NASA SBIR 2009 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 09-2 S5.03-9737
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Surface and Subsurface Robotic Exploration
PROPOSAL TITLE: High Torque, Direct Drive Electric Motor

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Bear Technologies, LLC
2415 Two Turtles Road
Maidens, VA 23102 - 2238
(804) 556-0004

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Thomas Myrick
2415 Two Turtles Road
Maidens, VA 23102 - 2238
(804) 240-0814

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 4
End: 6

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Bear Engineering proposes to advance the development of an innovative high torque, low speed, direct drive motor in order to meet NASA's requirements for such devices. Fundamentally, all electric motors basically work on the same electromagnetic principle: a tangential electromagnetic force attracts the rotor to the stator. Just when the rotor field is closest to the stator field and the electromagnetic attraction is greatest, the power is interrupted and another set of magnetic poles repeats the cycle. Furthermore, the two magnetically attracted elements never make contact, which would otherwise offer the highest force of attraction.

The proposed novel motor design, successfully demonstrated at TRL 4 in Phase 1, operates and behaves entirely differently from all other known electric motor designs and is capable of producing incredibly high, direct drive torques at low rotational speeds. Its operational performance is similar to that of a stepper motor with a 1000:1 gearhead attached, but the similarity ends there. The motor is configured such that its length to diameter aspect ratio is opposite that of traditional motors as it has a relatively large diameter and short axial length; this offers all new packaging opportunities. The design also allows for a single, large diameter bearing pair to be used for the motor's output shaft which renders it stiff enough to directly mount the driven elements. The need for additional bearing supports and bearing mounting structure is thus eliminated. By the end of Phase 2, the system will be designed, developed and tested at TRL 6 with Mars environmental conditions.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
For NASA, the proposed innovation is an enabling technology for planetary exploratory missions and a number of possible applications are envisioned for the motor, some examples are: Robotic arm joints, Rover wheel steering and drive actuators, Core drill sample Break-off actuators, Antenna Mast and Solar array deployment and Launch locks.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed motor will have a number of commercial applications in areas where slow speed and high output torques or forces are needed. For example, the motor could be used in applications where pneumatic or hydraulic actuators are required for high output forces. More specifically, commercial applications for the motor are anticipated in: winches, lifts, positioning equipment, structural deployment, presses and door openers/ lifts.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING (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.)
In-situ Resource Utilization

Form Generated on 08-06-10 17:29