NASA SBIR 2004 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 04 X6.03-9444
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Atmospheric Maneuver and Precision Landing
PROPOSAL TITLE: Spacecraft Thermal Protection Systems (TPS) based on polybenzoxazole (PBO) with unique UV, Atomic-O and Solar Wind Protective Coatings

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Ashwin-Ushas Corp Inc
206 Ticonderoga Blvd
Freehold, NJ 07728-3028
(732)462-1270

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Prasanna Chandrasekhar
chandra.p@ashwin-ushas.com
206 Ticonderoga Blvd
Freehold, NJ 07728-3028
(732)462-1270

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)
Poly(benzoxazole) (PBO) is a new polymeric material extremely promising for external spacecraft structural applications, including, e.g., debris and micrometeoroid shields and crew suits. One of its drawbacks is its reduced resistance to the far-UV and atomic-O. If a well-adhering, protective coating for PBO fibers and sheets could be found, a plethora of space applications would be opened up. In ongoing work with very thin, flexible, Variable Emittance panels for spacecraft thermal control applications, this firm has developed new unique, proprietary, very thin (< 0.4 micron), very light weight coatings which are applied on the top conducting polymer (CP) layer of these devices (the layer which faces the space environment). These coatings provide protection against UV/VUV, atomic-O, Solar Wind and electrostatic discharge in space, and have very high flexibility and very good adhesion. In further work, these coatings were deposited on PBO, and shown to have excellent adhesion and impart good UV protection. The present work seeks to further develop this technology by testing and refining a large number of these coatings on a variety of PBO substrate types. Extensive mechanical, UV and space vacuum testing, and at least one atomic-O and one Solar Wind test, are planned.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 100 WORDS)
All external spacecraft and crew system structures where Kevlar-type, highly durable, high thermal stability, flame-proof polymers could be used, including micrometeoroid and debris shields and personnel space suits.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 100 WORDS)
Besides space applications, space-proof PBO can be used in aircraft systems, and in law enforcement. Additionally, if successfully demonstrated for PBO, the UV/VUV/atomic-O-protective technology can be applied to a variety of polymeric and non-polymeric (including metallized) spacecraft surfaces.