NASA SBIR 2015 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 15-1 S1.07-9520
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Airborne Measurement Systems
PROPOSAL TITLE: eVADE: Volcanic Ash Detection Raman LIDAR

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Michigan Aerospace Corporation
1777 Highland Drive, Suite B
Ann Arbor, MI 48108 - 2285
(734) 975-8777

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr Dominique Fourguette
1777 Highland Drive, Suite B
Ann Arbor, MI 48108 - 2285
(734) 975-8777 Extension :114

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
John Dodds
1777 Highland Drive, Suite B
Ann Arbor, MI 48108 - 2285
(734) 975-8777 Extension :136

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 3
End: 4

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Airborne Measurement Systems is a Technology Available (TAV) subtopic that includes NASA Intellectual Property (IP). Do you plan to use the NASA IP under the award?

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Volcanic ash is a significant hazard to aircraft engine and electronics and has caused damage to unwary aircraft and disrupted air travel for thousands of travelers, costing millions of dollars. Michigan Aerospace Corporation (MAC) proposes to demonstrate the concept feasibility of a Raman Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) system to obtain real-time information from volcanic ash clouds and other aerosols, to be named eVADE (Volcanic Ash DEtection Raman LIDAR). The instrumentation will also be suitable for atmospheric dust transport measurements. Atmospheric dust plays a significant role in climate modeling; unlike volcanic ash that reflects the solar heating back into the upper atmosphere, dust absorbs the heat locally and causes heating of the troposphere. eVADE will be designed to operate from an airborne platform (manned or unmanned), and as such, will be compact and light weight.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
An airborne volcanic ash detection/characterization system, such as eVADE, will have wide applications in the study of the threat volcanic ash poses to aircraft and for other scientific study of volcanic plumes. Studies carried out with eVADE will allow NASA to refine their models of volcanic ash dispersion based on more data than is available at present. There is potential to combine such a system with MAC's optical air data system and icing and turbulence-detection systems into a unified system that would sense volcanic, turbulence and icing hazards ahead and report airspeed along with air temperature and density routinely.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
eVADE will have similar utility for non-NASA civil organizations (NOAA, FAA, etc.) and military services (US Air Force, etc.) in conducting scientific studies of volcanic ash characteristics and dispersal. A next generation of eVADE, more compact, would be mountable aboard UAVs to "scout" the airways during major eruptions in order to confirm that commercial and military aircraft cannot fly or give clearance for flights if the concentrations are not judged high enough to be a threat. With enough data, this will allow commercial and military aviation to continue safely during eruptions without widespread disruptions. Future systems could potentially be mounted aboard commercial and military aircraft as a warning system and/or as part of a unified system gathering data on ash concentrations from wherever the eVADE-equipped aircraft are flying, providing even more data for entry into models and for warning purposes. Combined with MAC's optical air data system along with its turbulence-detection and icing hazard warning technologies, a single sensor system may be devised that would detect these three hazards to aviation ahead and report airspeed along with air, temperature and density routinely, providing commercial aircraft with a valuable new optically-based multi-function warning/air data system. This would increase commercial aviation safety and enhance pilot awareness of the air situation ahead of the aircraft.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING (NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.)
Air Transportation & Safety
Interferometric (see also Analysis)
Lasers (Ladar/Lidar)
Optical/Photonic (see also Photonics)

Form Generated on 04-23-15 15:37