NASA SBIR 2011 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 11-2 O3.02-9621
PROPOSAL TITLE: Remotely Controlled Mixers for LMM Colloid Samples

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Techshot, Inc.
7200 Highway 150
Greenville, IN 47124 - 9515
(812) 923-9591

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Michael A Kurk
7200 Highway 150
Greenville, IN 47124 - 9515
(812) 923-9591 Extension :224

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

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
The U.S. portion of the International Space Station (ISS), which has been designated by Congress as a National Laboratory, holds great potential for a broad spectrum of researchers who are eager to take advantage of its unique scientific research facilities. The Light Microscopy Module (LMM), which was developed and is being managed by the NASA Glenn Research Center (GRC), is one such facility currently operating and producing fascinating results on ISS. LMM will yield even more astonishing results with the addition of enhancing subsystems. Techshot is currently developing one such subsystem, the LMM-Dynamic Stage (LMM-DS), which will satisfy a host of new experiments proposed for LMM. However, GRC has many more researchers awaiting the ultimate enhancing subsystems for conducting colloid science experiments in the LMM that could lead to new advanced materials with significant commercial potential. Capitalizing on Techshot's rapid progress with the LMM-DS, the company's vast array of mixing and separations technologies, and its extensive experience with microfluidic systems, a series of Colloid SPEcialty Cell Systems (C-SPECS) will be developed by Techshot for use in the LMM-DS. These innovative low-volume mixing devices will enable uniform particle density and remotely controlled repetition of LMM colloids experiments. In addition C-SPECS will minimize crew time, as well as avert the need for multiple, costly colloid samples that are expended after only one examination. C-SPECS are vital analytical microgravity research technologies that will greatly enhance the capability of the LMM, thereby enabling ISS to become even more effective as a national laboratory.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed C-SPECS devices offer important new technologies needed for on-orbit analysis, as well as the chance to leverage existing ISS facilities for new scientific payloads. This is expected to lead to many new potential NASA commercial applications and opportunities. In particular, Techshot expects to commercialize C-SPECS by incorporating them into the company's spaceflight service program that it offers to NASA mission programs, as well as to other government agencies. By further automating the experiment process, C-SPECS allows more colloid samples to be processed more quickly, while minimizing the need for crew time. This high-throughput capability afforded by C-SPECS can lead to far more efficient and productive use of the LMM, which will help NASA more fully realize its vision for the ISS as a national laboratory.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Techshot serves as an Implementation Partner to NASA and CASIS for enabling space flight experimentation on ISS. Building on its heritage of developing and integrating space flight hardware, as well as conducting scientific research in space, Techshot offers flight experiment services to non-NASA customers, such as researchers from universities and the private sector. Techshot's successful experience with microgravity processing facilities such as the Avian Development Facility and the ADvanced Space Experiment Processor positions the company as a leader in offering these unique services. Soon, the LMM-DS when coupled with the innovative capabilities of C-SPECS is expected to give Techshot an even greater competitive advantage in attracting commercial research customers. Furthermore, with the ability of commercial launch vehicles (e.g. SpaceX, Orbital, Boeing) to get more experiment samples into orbit, once these vehicles begin routine visits to the ISS, the economics of transporting and processing materials in microgravity should become far more compelling. Eventually, given sufficient economical commercial launch vehicle transporting capacity, when coupled with Techshot's cadre of space processing equipment, C-SPECS could become an important element for processing larger quantities of high-value materials for non-NASA commercial customers in the unique environment of space.

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.)
Adaptive Optics
Analytical Methods
Autonomous Control (see also Control & Monitoring)
Biophysical Utilization
Machines/Mechanical Subsystems
Process Monitoring & Control

Form Generated on 11-06-12 18:12