NASA SBIR 2016 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 16-1 S1.06-8099
SUBTOPIC TITLE: In Situ Sensors and Sensor Systems for Lunar and Planetary Science
PROPOSAL TITLE: Radiation Tolerant Temperature-Invariant Scintillation Modules

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Radiation Monitoring Devices, Inc.
44 Hunt Street
Watertown, MA 02472 - 4699
(617) 668-6801

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr. Erik Johnson
44 Hunt Street
Watertown, MA 02472 - 4699
(617) 668-6801

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Ms. Mary Abud
44 Hunt Street
Watertown, MA 02472 - 4699
(617) 668-6809

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

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
In Situ Sensors and Sensor Systems for Lunar and Planetary Science 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)
Radiation detectors are an invaluable tool for space applications that span planetary science, astrophysics, heliophysics, space weather, and dosimetry for human exploration, to name a few. A common technology used for radiation detection is scintillators, where the scintillation material generates a light flash with an intensity that is proportional to the energy deposited from the incident radiation. For exploration missions to hostile environments, such as those around Jupiter, Venus or Mercury, the dose to the scintillation material can become high, rendering them useless in a short time frame. A common practice to mitigate these effects is to anneal the scintillation materials, yet for the most advanced materials (hermetically packaged) that have unique properties that can be exploited (such as particle species discrimination based on the transient light response), there is no practical method or process to anneal them. For various experiments, the largest scintillation crystal possible may be ideal, yet when attempting to build an instrument inside a small spacecraft, such as a 3-6U cubesat, SiPMs are the only option to optically readout the crystal. Unless the energy spectrum can be compromised, a large crystal will require a large SiPM array, and to obtain the best performance from the detector, the array would need to be cooled. In both of these cases, the temperature of the scintillator and SiPM are modified for a specific purpose. The overall goal of this project is to develop a scintillator detector module for gamma ray and neutron detection that will provide mitigation strategies for reducing radiation and temperature effects.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The development of this technology will serve instruments for planetary science missions. In the latest planetary science Decadal Survey (DS), gamma-ray and neutron spectrometers are explicitly mentioned for a potential New Frontier mission ? Trojan Tour and Rendezvous. Among missioned identified, these detectors could be used to examine the surface of a comet for sample return (Comet Surface Sample Return), the surface of the moon for sample return (Lunar South Pole-Aitken Basin Sample Return), lateral variations in the structure and composition of the lunar crust (Lunar Geophysical Network), and the surface of Venus in-situ (Venus In Situ Explorer). These potential missions could be proposed later in 2016 and onward.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The robust testing required for space flight leads to high-quality terrestrial instrument that will have uses for military and homeland security applications. Scintillation detectors are used in security applications where the temperature conditions fluctuate and handling is done without care, which is also valid for oil-well logging. For other applications, such as radiation monitors at nuclear reactors, the radiation tolerance must be high as the instruments can be exposed to low-doses for multiple years. Our technology will be an excellent fit for personal Radiation Detectors (PRD), Spectroscopic Radiation Detectors (SPRD), in Radioisotope Identification Devices (RIIDs), Area Monitors, and in Stand-off detectors.

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.)
Ionizing Radiation
X-rays/Gamma Rays

Form Generated on 04-26-16 15:14