NASA SBIR 2016 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 16-2 S1.06-7136
SUBTOPIC TITLE: In Situ Sensors and Sensor Systems for Lunar and Planetary Science
PROPOSAL TITLE: A Compact Fluorescence Lifetime Excitation-Emission Spectrometer (FLEXEMS) for Detecting Trace Organics

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Leiden Measurement Technology, LLC
1240 Mountain View-Alviso Road, Suite E
Sunnyvale, CA 94089 - 2239
(650) 605-3046

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Nathan Bramall
1240 Mountain View-Alviso Rd. Ste E
Sunnyvale, CA 94089 - 2919
(650) 605-3046

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Nathan Bramall
Sunnyvale, CA 94089 - 2919
(650) 605-3046

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 3
End: 5

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
In Situ Sensors and Sensor Systems for Lunar and Planetary Science 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)
In this Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) effort, Leiden Measurement Technology (LMT) proposes to design and build the Fluorescence Lifetime Excitation Emission Spectrometer (FLEXEMS), a stand-off fluorescence spectrometer that uses multiple light-emitting diodes to excite fluorescence in samples from the deep-ultraviolet through the visible and employs time-correlated single-photon counting (TCSPC) and steady-state photon-counting techniques to quantify the fluorescence properties of the target in order to detect and identify trace levels of organics in-situ. The addition of fluorescence lifetime measurements distinguishes it from other compact, field-portable instruments available. For typical use, the instrument will require no reagents or consumables and by simply placing the instrument on a sample of rock, soil, or ice, or other material it will be able to detect a wide range of organics (at or below the 10-100 ppb-level) including free aromatic amino acids; biomarkers including F420 (specific to methanogens), NADH, and proteins; PAHs; and porphyrins (e.g. chlorophyll). It will be designed with flight in mind so that mass, volume, and power-usage will be minimized as much as possible.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
A flight version of FLEXEMS could be used on nearly any NASA mission that has Life Detection or the more general detection and identification of organics as one of its goals. Because FLEXEMS is inherently a stand-off instrument requiring no consumables, it requires no complicated sample-handling under most situations and can take a variety of different form-factors to suit the mission architecture: flow-through measurements of extraterrestrial water or melted ices implemented in microfluidic packaging; surface measurements of ices or minerals; integrated into optical microscopes; etc. Because FLEXEMS requires no consumables, it could be used indefinitely making it especially well-suited for long-duration missions where it could serve as both a primary instrument or a triage instrument for other instruments that may have a limited number of uses. Target extraterrestrial bodies FLEXEMS would be ideal to explore include Europa, Enceladus, comets and asteroids, Mars, and the permanently-shadowed craters of Moon. Additionally, its miniature size makes it suitable for Small- Sat missions to study organics such as O/OREOS. For terrestrial use, it will allow researchers in NASA's Space Science and Astrobiology Division to quantify the presence of different minerals and organics during analog field research and laboratory research and can integrate well into the NASA Ames Astrochemistry Facility.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
FLEXEMS has many uses outside of NASA. Due to its sensitivity, specificity, and portability, it would be very useful for (1) environmental research of terrestrial and marine waters (e.g., DOM, humic and fulvic acid studies, aromatic pollutants), (2) process control and monitoring of closed and recycled water systems (e.g., Naval or cruise shipboard water monitoring, water treatment, municipal water recycling plants), (3) pollution monitoring of water, soils and sediments (e.g., BTEX, PAHs, pesticides, and fuels), (5) the detection of biological weapons (e.g., Anthrax). Considering only (1) and (2), it is anticipated that total 5- year revenue may be as high as $20M.

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.)
Analytical Instruments (Solid, Liquid, Gas, Plasma, Energy; see also Sensors)
Analytical Methods
Biological Signature (i.e., Signs Of Life)
Chemical/Environmental (see also Biological Health/Life Support)

Form Generated on 03-07-17 15:43