NASA SBIR 2004 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 04 B2.01-7689
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Understanding and Utilizing Gravitational Effects on Plants and Animals
PROPOSAL TITLE: High Performance Fiber-Optic Sensor for Environmental Monitoring

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Los Gatos Research
67 East Evelyn Avenue, Suite 3
Mountain View, CA 94041-1518
(650)965-7772

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
An-Dien Nguyen
a.d.nguyen@lgrinc.com
67 East Evelyn Avenue, Suite 3
Mountain View, CA 94041-1518
(650)965-3459

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)
Los Gatos Research (LGR) proposes to develop a low-cost, compact, lightweight, rugged and easy-to-use environmental monitoring optical fiber sensor device based on the principle of cavity-enhanced absorption technique. This novel instrument will record concentration measurements of multiple gases including CO and CO2 with ultrahigh sensitivity, stability, and accuracy in real time with low power consumption and without external calibration. By increasing the measurement sensitivity of CO and CO2, the proposed device will allow reliable, gravity-independent monitoring of ecological stability in environments at arbitrary gravity range. In Phase I, LGR will develop and test the prototype fiber-optic-based ICOS device and algorithm that can simultaneously measure CO and CO2 with state of the art accuracy, specificity, repeatability, and sensitivity. The compact sensor device will measure both CO and CO2 concentrations in air with an uncertainty of less than 1 part in 1000 in less than 30 seconds, and require no calibration or reference gas. In Phase II LGR will construct a field deployable device optimized for this application. We will demonstrate the unit's inherent stability, ruggedness and performance in the field at a facility to be specified.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 100 WORDS)
Optical fiber sensor technology offers significant advantages for advanced aerospace platforms because they are low cost, lightweight, compact, environmently rugged, insensitive to harsh environment, and consumes low power. Combined with a cavity enhanced absorption technique, the fiber sensor offers ultrahigh sensitivity for chemical detection applications such as environmental monitoring in air, liquid, or solids systems.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 100 WORDS)
The proposed fiber-based ICOS sensors may be applied to a wide range of chemical, biochemical, biological, and environmental monitoring applications such as industrial real-time monitoring, medical diagnostics, industrial process control, and atmospheric research.