NASA SBIR 2016 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 16-1 S3.05-7455
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Guidance, Navigation and Control
PROPOSAL TITLE: Arcsecond Pointing Stability on a CubeSat Platform

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems, Inc.
15265 Alton Parkway, Suite 200
Irvine, CA 92618 - 2606
(480) 227-1113

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Mr. Solomon Westerman
15265 Alton Parkway, Suite 200
Irvine, CA 92618 - 2606
(310) 951-9068

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Austin Williams
15265 Alton Parkway, Suite 200
Irvine, CA 92618 - 2606
(480) 227-1113

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 1
End: 4

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Guidance, Navigation and Control 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)
In this proposal, Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems LLC (Tyvak) will improve the state-of-the-art in low-jitter CubeSat platforms to one arc-second pointing stability. This platform will address the increasing attitude control performance requirements of CubeSats to enable commercial and scientific missions previously restricted to larger and more expensive satellite platforms.

Reducing jitter in attitude determination and control systems (ADCS) CubeSat platforms has typically been an after-thought. Miniaturizing large satellite ADCS to CubeSat size has resulted in relatively poor attitude stability due to inexpensive reaction wheels and high noise IMU?s.

In the past five years, the CubeSat industry has seen a huge increase in customers with miniaturized payloads seeking high capability platforms. Arcsecond attitude stability is an enabling technology for many optical missions, including optical communication, space based optical inspection, and exoplanet imaging.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The interest in CubeSats has grown exponentially over the last decade. From scientists to the U.S. war fighter, the aerospace community has seen the tangible benefits of using CubeSats to satisfy key roles in their experiments and operational missions. NASA has played a significant role in fostering the growth of the CubeSat community.

Exoplanet imaging is an application that requires extremely good pointing stability. NASA?s Kepler mission, launched in March 2009, is currently surveying a large section space in search of exoplanets. Follow-up measurements on specific targets identified by Kepler would be a great fit for CubeSat exoplanet imagers, as very long measurements could be taken at relatively low cost. The number of CubeSat exoplanet imagers would easily scale, allowing follow-up measurements of hundreds of potential exoplanets.

Beyond imaging applications, the NASA Ames LADEE mission utilized laser communication to provide a high bandwidth long distance communication link. Laser communication was demonstrated from the moon with a beamwidth of 3 arc-seconds, requiring tight pointing stability from the ADCS. The technology developed in this SBIR could allow high bandwidth laser communication links without a separate pointing control stage, freeing up limited CubeSat payload space.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Arcsecond level jitter performance is important for low-light optical imaging applications, particularly satellite inspection missions. These missions have traditionally been restricted to government agencies, though commercial satellite inspection in the GEO belt would be useful for satellite operators to diagnose failures at a safe distance. Although most Earth imaging occurs at very short exposure windows (<1ms), increased attitude stability in a standard platform would improve the ground resolution/price ratio for these missions.

There is likely commercial interest in a star tracker that can operate as a rate sensor. The rate sensor can be used as a backup to an IMU in control systems, or even as the primary sensor for precision pointing. Since the rate sensor will be relatively high bandwidth, the rate sensor technology could increase the control loop bandwidth, providing better pointing accuracy and stability at low altitudes or in the presence of other disturbance torques.

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.)
Attitude Determination & Control
Image Processing
Positioning (Attitude Determination, Location X-Y-Z)

Form Generated on 04-26-16 15:14