NASA SBIR 2015 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 15-1 S3.02-9325
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Propulsion Systems for Robotic Science Missions
PROPOSAL TITLE: Miniaturized Lightweight Monopropellant Feed System for Nano- and Micro-satellites

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Systima Technologies, Inc.
10809 120th Avenue Northeast
Kirkland, WA 98033 - 5024
(425) 487-4020

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Stephanie Sawhill
10809 120th ave NE
Kirkland, WA 98033 - 5024
(425) 487-4020

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Tom Prenzlow
10809 120th Ave NE
Kirkland, WA 98033 - 5024
(425) 487-4020

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 2
End: 3

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Propulsion Systems for Robotic Science Missions 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)
There is a need for viable and practical solutions for utilizing chemical thrusters operating with green monopropellants on small- and micro-satellites and cubesats (100 kg-500 kg and less than 100 kg). Conventional approaches scale down poorly, due to the size, mass, and power requirements of components needed for high pressure propellant storage and flow control. For small spacecraft already facing significant mass and volume constraints, these systems severely limit the amount of propellant storage capacity.
Systima proposes to develop a miniaturized low power propellant feed and flow control system for green monopropellant thrusters that enables use of very low-pressure propellant storage vessels and high efficiency packaging. The proposed system can provide full feed system and flow control functionality for 0.5 to 1N-scale green monopropellant thrusters while consuming less than 1 Watt. There are no limitations on the type monopropellant that can be used with Systima's miniaturized pump. This program will target development of the pump for use with propulsion systems operating with advanced green monopropellant AF-M315E. This monopropellant has low-toxicity making it easy to store, integrate into modular designs and launch without added costs associated with handling toxic propellants such as hydrazine. In the Phase I program Systima will demonstrate the technology through analysis, and fabrication and testing of critical components. Phase I testing will evaluate preliminary system operation parameters that will be used to develop an integrated pump concept design. In Phase II, Systima will design and fabricate an integrated prototype pump system to demonstrate system performance and capability to meet thruster feed system requirements. Optimization of the design to minimize the system size, weight and power requirements will be conducted for chemical propulsion system integration onto small spacecraft.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed feedsystem has applicability for all liquid-based propellant applications where low power and high packing density are critical design constraints. Specific application to green monopropellant thrusters addresses NASA's need for 1N-scale chemical propulsion for its small spacecraft and CubeSat development efforts, such as NASA Edison. Spacecraft micropropulsion systems with Systima's miniaturized pump can be used for orbit maintenance, fine attitude control, troubleshooting and maintenance, and potential needs for quick response at relatively high Isp. Green monopropellant micropropulsion systems offer safer handling, reduced system complexity, decreased launch processing times and increased performance compared to conventional hydrazine micropropulsion systems, and are well suited for a wide range of NASA spacecraft missions.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Green monopropellants offer advantages in performance and reduced handling infrastructure for commercial and military micro satellites, and allow for modular designs for low cost rapid access to space capabilities. Micropropulsion systems with Systima's miniaturized pump system can be used for orbital insertion or transfer, stationkeeping, and attitude control. There also continues to be interest in 'multi-mode' propulsion where a shared propellant such as AF-M315E can be utilized by both chemical and electric thrusters to provide high thrust/low Isp and low thrust/high Isp capability using a single propellant. Other potential customers include green propulsion system and satellite developers such as Aerojet Rocketdyne and Skybox Imaging that could use this technology to reduce propulsion system power demands and provide increased satellite payload capacity.

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.)
Maneuvering/Stationkeeping/Attitude Control Devices

Form Generated on 04-23-15 15:37