NASA SBIR 02-1 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER:02- A8.02-7852 (For NASA Use Only - Chron: 024147 )
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Revolutionary Flight Concepts
PROPOSAL TITLE: UV Rigid Inflatable Wing

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Adherent Technologies, Inc.
9621 Camino del Sol NE
Albuquerque , NM   87111 - 1522
(505 ) 346 - 1685

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr. Ronald E. Allred
adherenttech@comcast.net
9621 Camino del Sol NE
Albuquerque , NM   87111 - 1522
(505 ) 346 - 1685

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)
As the unmanned exploration of Mars and Venus becomes more of a focus area at NASA, inflatable, rigidizable wings will become an enabling technology. The successful development of this type of wing will also have significant military applications. The utility of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for the military has been dramatically demonstrated in the conflict in Afghanistan. Rigidization of inflatable wings provides several potential advantages, including reducing the vulnerability to punctures, increasing stiffness and load carrying capability, allowing a higher aspect ratio for high altitude efficiency and longer missions, and reducing weight by eliminating the make up pressurization supply. An Ultraviolet (UV) curing epoxy resin system is proposed for development for rigidizing inflatable aero-structures in the Phase I program. This technology builds on current developments for rigidization of space inflatable booms and struts using the Rigidization on Command (ROC) system. The Phase I program will address structural and manufacturing requirements for inflatable aero-structures and explore the chemistry of an UV light-curing matrix system for rigidization. Matrix chemistry will be formulated to be compatible with long storage times and cure in the space environment using photocurable cationic epoxies. A demonstration half-span wing will be deployed and rigidized at the end of the Phase I program.

POTENTIAL COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
The eventual markets for inflatable spacecraft are extremely large for communications antennas and radars. In the commercial sector, over 200 satellites are expected to be launched in the next 10 years to meet consumer demand for cellular phones and other communication devices. A large number of military satellites are also expected to be launched in that timeframe. Military UAVs represent another potentially large market for UV rigidized inflatable aero-structures. The unique features of the ROC technology bring a distinct competitive advantage to the marketplace for inflatables compared to competing technologies.

POTENTIAL NASA APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
The proposed work will result in a new materials technology for rigidizable inflatable aero-structures. It is expected that the ROC technology will be adopted by the inflatables community for use by NASA and its contractors for a variety of space missions involving large antennas, mirrors, radars, and Gossamer structures such as solar sails. Rigidization of inflatable wings provides several potential advantages for planetary exploration, including reducing the vulnerability to punctures, increasing stiffness and load carrying capability, allowing a higher aspect ratio for high altitude efficiency and longer missions, and reducing weight by eliminating the make up pressurization supply.


Form Printed on 09-05-02 10:10