NASA SBIR 2004 Solicitation


SUBTOPIC TITLE:Thermal Control for Instruments
PROPOSAL TITLE:Advanced Heat Transfer Fluids

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
nanoComposix, Inc.
4336 Proctor Pl.
San Diego ,CA 92116 - 1060
(619) 890 - 0704

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Steven   Oldenburg
4336 Proctor Pl.
San Diego, CA  92116 -1060
(619) 890 - 0704

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Future NASA instrumentation will require increasingly sophisticated thermal control technology. We propose a next-generation nanofluid that consists of precisely manufactured nanoparticles that are added to existing coolant liquids. Even at very low loading levels, the nanoparticles dramatically increase the thermal conductivity and the critical heat flux of the fluid. Due to their small size, settling, abrasion, and clogging issues are eliminated, enabling the nanofluid to be immediately incorporated into existing thermal cooling systems. Additionally, the antimicrobial activity of nanofluids will provide a safe, non-toxic solution for the elimination of biofouling and biocorrosion from coolant loops.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
High thermal conductivity nanofluids will be utilized to increase the efficiency, lower the weight, and reduce the complexity of NASA thermal control systems. The low toxicity, long lifetime, and antimicrobial properties of the coolant make it suitable for use in spacecraft such as the International Space Station. The enhancement of the thermal conductivity of low freezing point coolants will also improve performance of thermal control systems that are exposed to low temperature environments (e.g., extravehicular activity spacesuits). For instrumentation that requires precise temperature control, a highly conductive fluid will allow for more efficient and even heat transfer from the fluid to the instrument.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Additives that can increase the thermal conductivity of a wide variety of coolants will have a large commercial market. One application is to increase performance of automobiles, trucks, and airplanes. The higher thermal conductivity of the nanofluids will allow for smaller and lighter engines, pumps, and radiators. Also, the increasing density of electronics and computer chips is requiring novel cooling solutions. Liquid cooling with high thermal conductivity fluids will address future heat dissipation problems. For example, micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) generate large quantities of heat during operation and will require high performance coolants to mitigate the large heat flux.

Form Printed on 08-01-05 13:52