NASA SBIR 2008 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 08-1 S5.04-8635
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Technologies for Low Mass Mars Ascent Vehicles (PAV)
PROPOSAL TITLE: Ceramic Matrix Composite Combustion Chamber for HAN-Based Monopropellants

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
12173 Montague Street
Pacoima, CA 91331 - 2210
(818) 899-0236

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Arthur J. Fortini,
Pacoima, CA 91331 - 2210
(818) 899-0236

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

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Ultramet will design and fabricate a lightweight, high temperature 5-lbf combustion chamber. The system will be designed for use with the AF-315 family of monopropellants, which have specific impulse values well in excess of 240 sec, and the combustion chamber material will be based on Ultramet's proven [Zr,Si]C ceramic matrix composite (CMC) technology. This material system allows the zirconium carbide to silicon carbide ratio in the matrix to be adjusted, thus enabling the material to be optimized for different combustion environments. To date, hot-fire testing has been done on Ultramet CMC chambers with both O2/H2 and AF-315e propellants. Ultramet will work closely with a leading supplier of spacecraft propulsion systems that will provide the chamber design and perform the hot-fire testing. The fabrication process and the survivability of the material system will be demonstrated in Phase I. Phase II would include long-duration life testing of the Phase I chamber as well as the design, fabrication, and testing of a chamber in the 100- to 500-lbf thrust class suitable for a payload ascent vehicle.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
For engines in the 100- to 500-lbf thrust class, potential NASA applications include main engines for payload ascent vehicles from either the moon or Mars as well as main engines for interplanetary spacecraft and spacecraft being placed into geosynchronous orbit. In addition to spacecraft applications, the technology can also be applied to launch vehicles for pitch and roll control. Smaller versions of the same engine can be used for attitude control system applications on any of these vehicles.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Commercial applications include apogee topping motors for commercial satellites as well as pitch and roll control motors for launch vehicles. Military applications include both primary propulsion and divert and attitude control system functions for missiles.

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.


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