NASA SBIR 2010 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 10-1 X5.03-8613
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Manufacturing of Polymer Matrix Composite (PMC) Structures
PROPOSAL TITLE: Lightweight Inflatable Cryogenic Tank

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Technology Applications, Inc.
5710 Flatiron Parkway, Suite A
Boulder, CO 80301 - 5711
(303) 443-2262

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Stephen J Nieczkoski
5710 Flatiron Parkway, Suite A
Boulder, CO 80301 - 5700
(303) 443-2262 Extension :127

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 2
End: 3

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
This proposal describes the development of an inflatable and lightweight polymer-fabric structured pressure vessel designed for the containment of cryogenic fluids. Technology Applications, Inc. (TAI) in collaboration with the Thin Red Line Aerospace (TRLA) proposes to develop a cryogen tank design solution with fully determinate load paths that addresses the need for lightweight pressure containment at extremely low temperatures without the reliability issues that exist in composite tank structures. Ultra High Performance Vessel (UHPV) technology that has already been developed for many other applications will be extended for use into the cryogenic temperature operating range.

The Phase I feasibility study encompasses the design and critical support elements for creating a robust lightweight cryogenic tank structure that meets NASA mission specifications. The Phase II program will involve fabricating and demonstrating the performance of a prototype cryogen tank based upon the inflatable UVHP architecture.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
NASA is interested in lightweight cryotanks for significant weight savings over conventional metal tanks. The development of composite-structured tanks has not been fully realized because these material systems have suffered from significant reliability issues due to crazing or microcracking in the composite matrix. Lightweight tanks will be necessary for cryogenic propellant storage to support NASA's space exploration initiatives. Cryotank mass and thermal efficiency improvements will enable long-term cryogen storage for space-based propellant depots, cryogenic storage of propellants on an Earth Departure Stage, propellant tanks for heavy lift vehicles and descent or ascent vehicles. Lunar habitation outposts requiring the storage of large cryogenic fuel masses and liquid oxygen and nitrogen for human habitation would also benefit from this technology.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
By developing this technology and making it more cost effective, other government and non-government entities will benefit from a lighter-weight, deployable, and flexible cryogen tank to meet cooling and storage needs in industries such as medical, biotech, high-temperature superconductors, and telecommunications. The potential for application in the transport and storage of liquefied natural gas (LNG) would provide significant potential to a large and growing market.

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.)
Cryogenic/Fluid Systems
Pressure & Vacuum Systems

Form Generated on 09-03-10 12:12