NASA SBIR 2015 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 15-1 Z5.01-9370
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Payload Technologies for Assistive Free-Flyers
PROPOSAL TITLE: Low-Inertia STEM Arm (LISA) Manipulators for Assistive Free-Flyers

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Altius Space Machines, Inc.
3001 Industrial Lane, Unit #5
Broomfield, CO 80020 - 7153
(303) 438-7110

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Mr. Jonathan Goff
3001 Industrial Lane, Unit #5
Broomfield, CO 80020 - 7153
(801) 362-2310

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Mr. Jonathan Goff
3001 Industrial Lane, Unit #5
Broomfield, CO 80020 - 7153
(801) 362-2310

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

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Payload Technologies for Assistive Free-Flyers is a Technology Available (TAV) subtopic that includes NASA Intellectual Property (IP). Do you plan to use the NASA IP under the award?

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Altius Space Machines proposes the development of lightweight robotic manipulators, that utilize rollable composite STEM booms to provide a prismatic extension/retraction DOF, as robot arms for Assistive Free-Flyers (AFFs) on the International Space Station. These Low-Inertia STEM Arm (LISA) manipulators can provide comparable or better manipulation capabilities to AFFs than traditional robotic manipulators, but with less mass, lower inertial, better stowability, and the ability to reach into very hard-to-access locations.

In Phase I, Altius and its partners will gather potential use cases for manipulator-equipped AFFs, derive system requirements and develop a conceptual design for the LISA manipulators, and develop a proof-of-concept prototype of the small STEM boom deployers for the LISA manipulators. This will raise the system TRL from 2 to 3.

In Phase II, Altius and its partners will develop a prototype flight-set of LISA manipulators and interface hardware to connect them to the SPHERES testbeds on ISS, and will support the necessary ISS safety review meetings to get flight approval by the end of Phase II. Successful flight demonstration in a Phase II-E or II-X option would raise the system TRL to 8, at which point it could be smoothly integrated into operational AFFs such as the ones NASA STMD is currently developing.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The main near-term application for LISA manipulators is to infuse them into the design of the AFF that STMD is developing under the Human Exploration Telerobotics 2 (HET-2) project. STMD is developing these AFFs as an operational robotics system for performing menial tasks that are currently performed by ISS crew, such as inventory and environmental monitoring. LISA manipulators can provide many benefits to an operational AFF, by providing not only perching/anchoring and pulling/prodding, but also more complex manipulation tasks such as opening storage lockers, fetching items, and emplacing remote sensors, without the need for crew support.

In addition to the ISS application, LISA-equipped AFFs may also be useful for crew-tended deep space facilities, enabling routine maintenance, repairs, and crew-preparations to be performed robotically while no crew is present.

Lastly, a vacuum/space-compatible derivative of the LISA manipulators may be useful for external assistive free-flyers supporting and in some cases replacing EVAs for repairs, maintenance, and inspection outside NASA vehicles and facilities.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Three potential non-NASA applications for LISA manipulators are: (1) Commercial equivalents of the NASA-developed AFF, for crew assistance on future commercial space facilities, (2) Commercially-operated versions of the AFFs for providing commercial janatorial, maintenance, and support services onboard existing and future NASA facilities, and (3) for fixed-mounted arms for manipulation of experiments in enclosed facilities such as the ISS Microgravity Science Glovebox.

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.)
Actuators & Motors
Autonomous Control (see also Control & Monitoring)
Inventory Management/Warehousing
Machines/Mechanical Subsystems
Robotics (see also Control & Monitoring; Sensors)
Simulation & Modeling

Form Generated on 04-23-15 15:37