NASA SBIR 2016 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 16-1 H3.01-7755
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Environmental Monitoring
PROPOSAL TITLE: Compact Chemical Monitor for Spacecraft Water Recovery Systems

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Intelligent Optical Systems, Inc.
2520 West 237th Street
Torrance, CA 90505 - 5217
(424) 263-6300

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr. Jesus Delgado Alonso
2520 West 237th Street
Torrance, CA 90505 - 5217
(424) 263-6321

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr. Reuben Sandler
2520 W. 237th Street
Torrance, CA 90505 - 5217
(424) 263-6305

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 3
End: 4

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Environmental Monitoring 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)
The International Space Station (ISS) requires lightweight, low-power, easy-to-use, accurate, and stable sensor technology for monitoring wastewater content to ensure proper functioning of the ISS Environmental Control and Life Support System (ECLSS). In particular, continuous and unattended pH, Ca2+, and conductivity monitoring in the Urine Processor Assembly (UPA) in use in the ISS Water Recovery System is required. At present, no such sensor technology exists that can satisfy the demanding operational requirements of the ISS and future exploration missions. Intelligent Optical Systems (IOS) proposes to develop a luminescence-based optical sensor probe to monitor calcium, conductivity, and pH levels directly in ISS wastewater in real time. Optical sensors are superior to electrochemical ones in terms of robustness, reliability, and maintenance. These advantages are most notable in corrosive aqueous environments. Our monitor will incorporate robust sensor elements, interrogated via a compact, low-power optoelectronic unit. The proposed sensors will be remotely connected to the electronic circuitry by an electromagnetic interference (EMI)-proof optical fiber cable. For space systems control, miniature fiber optic sensors connected to the electronic circuitry by an optical fiber cable allow greater flexibility in placing the sensor system in the ISS, where space is highly valuable. Our flow-through monitor will include optical sensors for calcium and pH sensing based on previous sensor technologies developed at IOS. IOS will also incorporate a miniature conductivity sensor into the sensor probe system. In Phase II we will produce prototypes for integration in a Urine Processor Assembly and conduct extensive testing under simulated environmental conditions, culminating in delivery to NASA of a monitoring system, bringing the monitor to TRL 7.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Recycling spacecraft wastewater is essential for the success and sustainability of manned space missions. The proposed multisensory probe responds directly to a NASA need for monitoring calcium, pH, and conductivity in the ECLSS aboard the ISS, specifically in the Urine Processor Assembly (UPA). Successful development of a compact, low power, fully automated multisensor probe for multi-agent analysis will give NASA a powerful tool for wastewater monitoring. Real-time knowledge of wastewater chemistry will allow optimal recycling of wastewater aboard the ISS as well as for other manned space missions. This device will also have application as a monitor for water quality in all water streams aboard the ISS. Sensors capable of monitoring organic, inorganic, and trace contaminants in water, operational in microgravity, could make use of the same sensing technology and optoelectronic unit.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
There is significant market potential for a low cost, compact, durable, accurate, and automated sensor to monitor water composition. State-of-the-art instrumentation for monitoring water quality includes instrumentation that is bulky and that requires trained personnel for operation. With its luminescent optical probe, our device will not only accurately perform in-line detection of calcium, pH, and conductivity, but will also be adaptable to monitor several other analytes important and/or relevant to water quality analysis. With the rising demand for smart water solutions in the water industry, a low cost, compact, and easy to use sensor technology will have significant market value. Additionally, there are a large number of potential commercial applications for a multisensor probe for calcium and pH, as well as for the individual sensors themselves, outside of the water quality and wastewater markets. The biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries, which require real time monitors for accurately tracking calcium, pH, and/or other biomarkers for R&D purposes will be target markets. Biomedical monitoring may also be an attractive business opportunity; miniature probes for measuring and monitoring extracellular calcium have potential applications for monitoring the pathogenesis of osteoporosis, cancer, and cardiovascular diseases.[1]

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.)
Analytical Instruments (Solid, Liquid, Gas, Plasma, Energy; see also Sensors)
Chemical/Environmental (see also Biological Health/Life Support)
Essential Life Resources (Oxygen, Water, Nutrients)
Waste Storage/Treatment

Form Generated on 04-26-16 15:14