NASA SBIR 2005 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER:05 A2.06-8830
SUBTOPIC TITLE:Smart, Adaptive Aerospace Vehicles With Intelligence
PROPOSAL TITLE:Lightweight Metal RubberTM Sensors and Interconnects

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Nanosonic Inc
1485 South Main Street
Blacksburg ,VA 24060 - 5556
(540) 953 - 1785

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Andrea   Hill
ahill@nanosonic.com
1485 South Main Street
Blacksburg, VA  24060 -5556
(540) 953 - 1785

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)
The objective of the proposed program is to develop lightweight and highly elastic electrically conducting interconnects and strain sensor arrays for next generation adaptive aerospace vehicles and structures. The systems-level problem this would solve is the inability of currently available materials to undergo the large strains and displacements associated with shape changes of morphing structures. NanoSonic will demonstrate the feasibility of the Metal RubberTM family of freestanding nanocomposite materials to serve as 1) electrically conductive, low modulus electrodes for large displacement mechanical actuators required to affect large shape changes, and 2) an integrated network of strain sensors to allow mapping of strain and determination of shape in adaptive structural components. Metal RubberTM is fabricated via layer-by-layer, molecular self-assembly, which enables thickness and placement control over multiple molecular constituents for true nanostructured multifunctionality. As an electrode material, new, ultra-low modulus Metal RubberTM can be strained to 1000% elongation while remaining electrically conductive; it returns to its original shape and nominal conductivity when released. As a strain sensor, strains up to 1000% have been measured in very highly flexible structures. During Phase I the feasibility of using such electrodes and strain sensors would be demonstrated in cooperation with a large aerospace company.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
NASA applications for materials developed on this program include 1) highly flexible electrical interconnects for mechanical actuators, flex circuits, robotics, prostheses and flexible displays, 2) strain sensors capable of measuring very large strains, 3) low-weight replacements for metal electromagnetic interference shielding materials and electrostatic discharge materials, 4) low-weight RF antenna and waveguide components, and 5) low mass density replacements for metal wiring and cabling on spacecraft and exploration vehicles.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
Metal RubberTM can be used as replacements for conventional tin-lead solder for the mechanical, electrical and thermal interconnection of electronic and mechanical components. Similar materials may also be used in high performance, highly flexible and mechanically robust electronic flex circuits, flexible displays and smart electronic fabrics.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING
Airframe
Ceramics
Composites
Controls-Structures Interaction (CSI)
Metallics
Multifunctional/Smart Materials
Perception/Sensing
Power Management and Distribution
Sensor Webs/Distributed Sensors


Form Printed on 09-19-05 13:12