NASA 1996 SBIR Phase I


PROPOSAL NUMBER : 96-1 04.07-1100

PROJECT TITLE : Miniaturized Fiber Optic Distributed Strain Sensor (DSS) System

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)

The next generation reusable launch vehicles (RLVs) will require a multi-sensor nodes for health monitoring of cryogenic tanks. These envisioned multi-sensor nodes will be in a Multi-Chip Module form factor and will feature real-time, in-situ monitoring of distributed strain, temperature and hydrogen. The distributed strain and hydrogen sensors (DSS and DHS) are currently being developed at NASA Langley and are based on fiber optic Bragg grating technology. These sensors are initially being implemented in VME form for the X-33 but have not been implemented into the proper MCM form factor for space based RLV usage. Systems & Processes Engineering Corporation (SPEC) proposes to design a MCM based fiber optic distributed strain sensor (DSS) system which will provide for a highly compact, radiation hardened, space flight qualified sensor system for use in the next generation RLVs. This design will be based on the NASA Langley DSS VME implementation design which is currently being developed for the X33 program. Building upon SPEC's current fiber optic distributed temperature sensor (DTS), ASIC and MCM technologies, SPEC is well qualified and capable of developing a miniaturized DSS MCM package for future NASA RLV health monitoring applications.
POTENTIAL COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS
The use of a compact, miniaturized distributed strain sensor system has both military and commercial applications providing monitoring of composite materials, bridge monitoring, civil structures, spacecraft fuel tanks, and engine health monitoring. SPEC has identified a wide range of applications in building health and safety monitoring, fiber optic chemical and biological sensors, pressure monitoring, process control and medical instrumentation.
NAME AND ADDRESS OF PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR
Name: Dr. Robert C. Chin
Organization and address is the same as Offeror.
NAME AND ADDRESS OF OFFEROR
Systems & Processes Engineering Corporation (SPEC)
Phone: (512) 306-1100
401 Camp Craft Road
Austin, TX 78746-6558