NASA SBIR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-2 X6.03-8797
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Advanced Radiation Shielding Materials
PROPOSAL TITLE: Long Duration Space Shelter Shielding

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Physical Sciences Inc.
20 New England Business Center
Andover, MA 01810 - 1077
(978) 689-0003

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
David Weatherby
20 New England Business Center
Andover, MA 01810 - 1077
(978) 689-0003

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 4 to 5

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Physical Sciences Inc. (PSI) has developed a ceramic composite material system that is more effective for shielding both GCR and SPE than aluminum. The composite technology enables a modular, multifunctional building system for lunar habitats that can keep equivalent doses received by astronauts below the 150 mSv exposure limit during a 90 day lunar mission. During Phase I, we achieved TRL 3 by demonstrating that our ceramic composite material is superior to aluminum in radiation shielding applications using HZETRN code calculations and radiation exposure experiments on material test samples.

The Phase II SBIR effort will advance our ceramic composite to TRL 5 by…..

1) Performing detailed shielding calculations using OLTARIS for a proposed shelter wall design
2) Demonstrating fabrication methods that produce material with consistent mechanical, electrical and thermal properties
3) Using radiation exposure experiments to verify shielding performance

We will design and analyze a lunar habitat wall system using our ceramic composite material as the primary structural member. We will fabricate and strength test our ceramic composite materials to demonstrate that the ceramic composite system is a viable structural material for lunar habitats. We will demonstrate that the ceramic composite system will provide at least 20% greater radiation shielding effectiveness against GCR and SPE than an aluminum structure of comparable mass.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Ceramic composites developed under this program will be used in long duration space habitats for lunar and Martian exploration as well as crew transport vehicles to these mission sites. Ceramic composites are ideal for this application because they can be used as both structural elements in vehicles/habitats. Advantages of ceramic composites include lighter weight and higher shielding efficiency against GCR, SPE and albedo neutrons compared to aluminum.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Commercial applications for ceramic composites include detector shielding enclosures for high energy physics and space experiments, radiation source containers, light weight nuclear waste transport containers and shielding enclosures for working near nuclear reactors. All of these applications will benefit from the high strength, low weight and neutron shielding capabilities of these materials.

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

Form Generated on 08-08-08 10:51