NASA SBIR 2006 Solicitation


SUBTOPIC TITLE:Radiation Shielding Materials and Structures
PROPOSAL TITLE:Multifunctional Polymers Incorporating High-Z Neutron-Capture Nanoparticles

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
International Scientific Technologies, Inc.
P O Box 757
Dublin, VA 24084-0757
(540) 633-1424

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Russell J. Churchill
P O Box 757
Dublin, VA  24084-0757
(540) 633-1424

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT ( Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
NASA has identified the need for the development of lightweight structures technologies to support Lunar Lander and Lunar Habitats programs and for the transfer of relevant technology to Crew Exploration Vehicle and Crew Launch Vehicle programs. NASA further calls for revolutionary advances in radiation shielding materials and structures technologies to protect humans from the hazards of space radiation during NASA missions. To address this need and in response to NASA Subtopic X6.01, International Scientific Technologies, Inc. in conjunction with the College of William and Mary, proposes the development of lightweight multifunctional polymeric materials with nanoparticle metallic additives that will provide radiation protection of humans engaged in long-duration space missions. The Phase I program Technical Objectives include selection and functionalization of metallic nanoparticles for incorporation into polymers, fabrication of nanocomposite films of space-compatible polymers, and measurement of radiation shielding effectiveness. The anticipated result of the Phase I and Phase II programs is the fabrication of polymeric materials incorporating metallic nanoparticles that will have multifunctional properties of radiation shielding against galactic cosmic radiation and neutrons and electromagnetic radiation, and structural integrity to permit use in flexible and rigid structures and habitats during deep-space missions.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS ( Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed multifunctional nanocomposites will find application in the Exploration Systems mission in protecting astronauts and sensitive optical, electronic, thermal and acoustic components from environmental hazards including radiation, dust and thermal transients while, at the same time, providing lightweight structural functions. It is expected that nanocomposite systems will provide a high-performance-to-weight radiation shield that can be used within human habitations, spacecraft and protective apparel. Other missions supported by NASA could also make use of the nanocomposite materials in low earth orbit or in other orbital paths traversing high radiation regions of space.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS ( Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Lightweight multifunctional radiation shielding will find application in the commercial (e.g., hospitals and nuclear power plants) and defense (e.g., nuclear-powered ships and surveillance satellites) sectors. The shields will provide protection for homeland security first responders employed by law enforcement agencies, fire departments and hospitals. It is also expected that the shielding can be fabricated into temporary shelters used by defense personnel and considered for use in the protection of individuals in case of a nuclear or radiological event. The radiation shielding material will be suitable for fabrication into protective clothing for healthcare professionals involved in X-ray and nuclear medicine.

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.

Launch and Flight Vehicle
Multifunctional/Smart Materials
Radiation Shielding Materials
Thermal Insulating Materials

Form Printed on 09-08-06 18:19