NASA SBIR 2005 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER:05 S5.01-9321
SUBTOPIC TITLE:Low Thrust and Propellantless Propulsion Technologies
PROPOSAL TITLE:High Performance Methane Thrust Chamber (HPMTC)

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Orbital Technologies Corp
Space Center, 1212 Fourier Drive
Madison ,WI 53717 - 1961
(608) 827 - 5000

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Martin J Chiaverini
cramerj@orbitec.com
1212 Fourier Drive
Madison, WI  53717 -1961
(608) 827 - 5000

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)
ORBITEC proposes to develop a High-Performance Methane Thrust Chamber (HPMRE) to meet the demands of advanced chemical propulsion systems for deep-space mission applications. The HPMTC utilizes a unique propellant injector to generate a coaxial vortex flow field in the combustion chamber. Propellant mixing and burning are confined to the core vortex, while the cool outer vortex provides convective cooling to counter the effects of thermal radiation. The HPMTC will utilize an optimized combustion chamber geometry and propellant injectors to maximize performance and minimize wall heating. Avoiding severe thermal cycling of the chamber will provide very long engine lifetime and allow for simple, lightweight chamber designs. The coaxial vortices also provide an extended flow path longer than the geometric length of the chamber. The enhanced shear mixing can produce high combustion efficiencies. Phase I tasks include propulsion system analysis, thrust chamber fabrication, hot-fire testing with methane using both GOX and LOX, data analysis, scaling effects analysis, and development of plans for Phase II activities.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
Propulsion systems using the HPMTC chambers will exhibit lower initial cost, longer service life, and lower life cycle cost than any existing known or projected competing technologies for the same thrust level. In addition to deep space chemical propulsion applications, which demand very high reliability and long life, NASA applications include the current propulsion systems for ELV's, service life extension versions for the SSME, and application to CEV system development programs. The HPMTC is well-suited to RCS, OMS, and upper stage needs. Throttling technologies can be applied to mature versions of the HPMTC.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
The HPMTC chambers are ideal for commercial applications where economics are more stringent in justifying pursuit of TC technology. For such cases, the low initial cost of the HPMTC main chamber, and the low cost of qualifying such hardware in a new size can be key. New commercial users seeking to develop reusable launch systems will be prime candidates to seek this new, higher-performance low cost approach to reliable, long life, low cost liquid rocket engines. We have been approached by several such private venture firms seeking this technology. A ready market in the private sector is known to exist.

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
Chemical
Cooling


Form Printed on 09-19-05 13:12