NASA SBIR 2016 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 16-1 H7.01-8143
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Ablative Thermal Protection Systems Technologies
PROPOSAL TITLE: Flexible Gap Filler for Ablative Thermal Protection Systems

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Luna Innovations, Inc.
301 1st Street Southwest, Suite 200
Roanoke, VA 24011 - 1921
(540) 769-8400

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr John B. Beck
3157 State Street
Blacksburg, VA 24060 - 6604
(540) 961-4506

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Ms. Shirley Evans
301 1st Street SW Suite 200
Roanoke, VA 24016 - 1921
(540) 961-6724

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

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Ablative Thermal Protection Systems Technologies 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)
NASA's Orion spacecraft will serve as the exploration vehicle that will carry a crew to space, provide emergency abort capability, sustain the crew during the space travel, and provide safe re-entry from deep space return velocities. Planetary aerocapture and entry requires that the crew vehicle be equipped with a Thermal Protection System (TPS) comprised of lightweight, high performance ablator materials. Materials current under development include felt or woven material precursors impregnated with polymers (i.e. PICA) and/or additives to improve ablation and insulative performance, along with the block form of Avcoat ablator. There is a need for advancements in polymers for use in bonding and/or gap fills for tiles of advanced TPS for extreme entry conditions. The ideal binder would be a flexible, low glass transition temperature polymer with a high decomposition temperature/char yield (comparable to phenolic) and a high (>1%) strain-to-failure that is compatible with cured epoxy, phenolic, and/or cyanate ester. Engineers at Luna have developed a novel copolymer elastomer that has a very low glass transition (< -100 degrees F) and a decomposition temperature on par with typical phenolic ablatives. This resin can be highly filled to tune ablative properties and is compatible with glass and carbon fabric substrates.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Luna's flexible, ablative gap filler will be enabling for the Thermal Protection System capability on current and future NASA reentry vehicles as well as carbon cloth phenolic ablative liners for nozzles on solid rocket boosters. Variations on Luna's formulation may also find use as robust flexible sealants for spacecraft exterior repair.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Ablative gap fillers will be useful in commercial space transport reentry vehicles and various ablative liners in both military and commercial rocketry. There is also potential use for this low Tg polymer in hydraulic seals that experience a wide temperature gradient.

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.)
Entry, Descent, & Landing (see also Planetary Navigation, Tracking, & Telemetry)

Form Generated on 04-26-16 15:14