NASA SBIR 2005 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER:05 X10.02-8601
SUBTOPIC TITLE:Critical Technologies for In-Space Application of Nuclear Thermal Propulsion
PROPOSAL TITLE:Real-Time Micro-Miniature Dosimeter

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Luna Innovations Incorporated
2851 Commerce Street
Blacksburg ,VA 24060 - 6657
(540) 552 - 5128

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Robert   Fielder
submissions@lunainnovations.com
2851 Commerce Street
Blacksburg, VA  24060 -6657
(540) 552 - 5128

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)
The new Presidential directive to place humans on Mars and establish bases on the moon will require advances in nuclear thermal propulsion and power generation. Nuclear thermal propulsion has a combined advantage in power density, ISP and low fuel/mass ratio over other propulsion means for these missions. To meet the needs of reactor safety, health monitoring and performance, light-weight, real-time, in-core neutron and gamma monitoring sensors need to be developed. Luna is proposing to develop a real-time miniature gamma and neutron dosimeter. This hybrid sensor will measure gamma and neutron dose independently, as well as temperature, along a single optical fiber at the same location. The transducer will be less than 5mm long and 1mg in mass. This dosimeter will enable real-time determination of reactor power level, health and remaining fuel as well as shielding effectiveness. The design will be based on EFPI measurement techniques developed by Luna and demonstrated in high-radiation and temperature environments. During the Phase I, Luna will demonstrate feasibility of the proposed dosimeter in a nuclear reactor. Phase II will optimize the sensors and demodulation system for performance and cost, considering space hardening constraints, and demonstrate the system in high radiation and high temperature environments.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
While the sensor development will be focused on nuclear thermal propulsion needs, the sensor can also be directly utilized for monitoring nuclear power reactors as well, both terrestrial and extraterrestrial.
Potential NASA applications include:
1. Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) for Mars manned missions
2. NTP for deep space probes
3. Lunar surface power reactors
4. Future long duration deep space probe power reactors
5. Future Spacestation power reactors
6. Mars surface power reactors

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
1. Terrestrial nuclear power generation reactor monitoring for improved performance, safety and reliability.
2. Nuclear turbo generator monitoring
3. Spent fuel and storage facility monitoring
4. Real-time facility radiation exposure monitoring

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
Autonomous Control and Monitoring
Data Acquisition and End-to-End-Management
High-Energy
Nuclear (Adv Fission, Fusion, Anti-Matter, Exotic Nuclear)
Nuclear Conversion
On-Board Computing and Data Management
Particle and Fields
Pilot Support Systems
Propellant Storage
Radiation Shielding Materials
Radiation-Hard/Resistant Electronics
Suits
Thermodynamic Conversion


Form Printed on 09-19-05 13:12