NASA STTR 2015 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 15-1 T4.02-9966
RESEARCH SUBTOPIC TITLE: Regolith Resource Robotic
PROPOSAL TITLE: A Robust Architecture for Sampling Small Bodies

NAME: Advanced Space, LLC NAME: The Regents of the University of Colorado
STREET: 4415 Laguna Place, Unit 207 STREET: 3100 Marine Street Rm 479
CITY: Boulder CITY: Boulder
STATE/ZIP: CO  80303 - 3783 STATE/ZIP: CO  80303 - 1058
PHONE: (607) 316-1273 PHONE: (303) 492-6221

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr. Jay McMahon
431 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309 - 5004
(303) 492-3944

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Bradley Cheetham
4415 Laguna Pl Unit 207
Boulder, CO 80303 - 3783
(607) 316-1273

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 1
End: 3

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Regolith Resource Robotic 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)
This proposal will develop an innovative architecture and concept of operations that permits reliable, safe, and repeated sampling of small bodies. The Lofted Regolith Sampling (LoRS) architecture is based on advanced astrodynamics and autonomy that is robust to target-body uncertainties and is adaptive during operations. The LoRS architecture is based on several key phases that ultimately lead to a thorough characterization of the target body and collection of multiple samples while avoiding complex and highly unpredictable landing requirements. The first phase of this characterization is the estimation of the body's gravitational field and remote sensing of the NEO surface. After sufficiently characterizing the body, the second phase of the proposed architecture is to disturb material on the surface of the small body such that it is lofted into orbit about the body. This disturbance can be initiated with a variety of chemical explosions, kinetic impactors, or other forces which will be evaluated during the proposed effort. The third phase is to remotely characterize the lofted material to identify key attributes such as size and composition. The fourth phase of operations is for the orbiting spacecraft to approach a specific portion of the debris field and collect physical samples from the NEO. Once samples have been collected in orbit, the vehicle can further evaluate the samples on-board, identifying key constituents etc., and return this information to terrestrial scientists.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The LoRS architecture will directly support infusion into NASA science and exploration programs that seek to characterize and obtain materials from asteroids and/or comets. These applications are strengthened by the LoRS architecture due to its increased flexibility and robustness. The LoRS architecture will also enable these types of missions in the near-term time horizon. Associated technologies in remote characterization and autonomy can be applicable to a large number of NASA related robotic endeavors.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Beyond NASA, the LoRS architecture has the potential to assist other governments to explore the solar system. The prospecting function of the LoRS architecture is also expected to be of interest to commercial companies that have publicly stated an interest in mining asteroids in the future. This architecture is advantageous to current prospecting architectures in terms of cost and timeline, and so is expected to be readily adopted by these non-NASA entities.

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.)
Algorithms/Control Software & Systems (see also Autonomous Systems)
Autonomous Control (see also Control & Monitoring)
Entry, Descent, & Landing (see also Astronautics)
Entry, Descent, & Landing (see also Planetary Navigation, Tracking, & Telemetry)
Navigation & Guidance
Relative Navigation (Interception, Docking, Formation Flying; see also Control & Monitoring; Planetary Navigation, Tracking, & Telemetry)
Sequencing & Scheduling
Spacecraft Design, Construction, Testing, & Performance (see also Engineering; Testing & Evaluation)
Spacecraft Instrumentation & Astrionics (see also Communications; Control & Monitoring; Information Systems)
Telemetry/Tracking (Cooperative/Noncooperative; see also Planetary Navigation, Tracking, & Telemetry)

Form Generated on 04-23-15 15:37