NASA SBIR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-1 S1.08-9267
SUBTOPIC TITLE: in situ Airborne, Surface, and Submersible Instruments for Earth Science
PROPOSAL TITLE: Fast temperature sensor for use in atmospheric sciences

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Southwest Sciences, Inc.
1570 Pacheco Street, Suite E-11
Santa Fe, NM 87505 - 3993
(505) 984-1322

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Mark Zondlo
1570 Pacheco Street, Suite E-11
Santa Fe, NM 87505 - 3993
(505) 984-1322

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 6 to 7

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Southwest Sciences proposes a novel sensor to measure atmospheric temperature at high frequency (10 Hz) and with high precision and accuracy (0.1 degrees C). Existing temperature sensors are negatively impacted by high airflows on platforms such as aircraft or by the presence of cloud particles. Such inaccuracies prevent detailed understanding of cloud microphysics and energy fluxes that are critical for understanding global climate change. The proposed sensor uses a low power vertical cavity surface emitting laser with a novel optical cell to measure temperature in a minimally intrusive method that is unaffected by cloud particles or aircraft speed. The sensor will be sufficiently lightweight and compact for use on balloons, kites, and UAVs as well as more conventional research aircraft.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
A sensitive and fast temperature sensor can be used on balloons, unmanned aerial vehicles, tethered kites, and conventional suborbital platforms for Earth science field campaigns. Measurements of temperature within clouds and fine temperature fluctuations will yield a better understanding of cloud particle nucleation, formation, growth and dissipation. Information gained from such process studies will enable more accurate parameterizations of cloud processes that can be used in atmospheric models. In turn, more accurate predictions of how the Earth's climate is changing can be made.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
A fast temperature sensor is important for industrial process control of gases and other fluids, particularly in turbulent flow regimes. Research on internal combustion engines requires fast and sensitive sensors that do not impede the flow. The atmospheric science community also needs fast temperature measurements for understanding cloud formation and transport of energy between different layers of the atmosphere.

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.

Control Instrumentation
Fundamental Propulsion Physics
Optical & Photonic Materials
Pilot Support Systems
Semi-Conductors/Solid State Device Materials
Testing Facilities

Form Generated on 09-18-07 17:50