In response to NASA SBIR 2020 Phase I Solicitation Topic A1.07 “Electric Power Generation Via Thermionic Conversion for Hypersonic Applications”, Innoveering and the University of Michigan have teamed to submit a proposal to design and develop our novel MEMS Solid-state Semiconductor based Thermionic Converter (“mSSTiC”) system. The Ph I goal is to design the mSSTiC into a testable prototype capable of generating a few W/cm2 via its location at strategic locations within the hypersonic platform generating very high internal temperature gradients (DT): isolator exit, combustor, nozzle throat. The Innoveering team’s innovative mSSTiC system shall meet all of NASA’s requirements by providing efficient, reliable electrical power generation, utilizing an array of MEMS (MicroElectro-Mechanical Systems) based thermionic converter modules situated in an array configuration surrounding an internal component within the hypersonic platform.
Potential NASA application of our team’s mSSTiC technology could be to integrate it into the TPS or hot structure of a hypersonic platform, placed near and around the circumference, or perimeter, of the combustor or nozzle, allowing it to absorb maximum heat flux to optimize its power generation. The current NASA Hypersonic Technology Project may allow for an opportunity to assess mSSTiC integration. This technology can be used
Commercial and dual applications of this technology could include electrical power supplies for satellites, fuel cells and combustion engines. The 20-year market outlook for hypersonic technology is driven by NASA and the Nation’s needs for hypersonic vehicles and platforms. A simple, robust and operational power generating system offers a technological advantage for enhanced vehicle performance.