NASA SBIR 2016 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 16-1 Z1.01-8032
SUBTOPIC TITLE: High Power/Voltage Electronics
PROPOSAL TITLE: Improving the Response of Silicon Carbide Devices to Cosmic Radiation

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
CoolCAD Electronics, LLC
7101 Poplar Avenue
Takoma Park, MD 20912 - 4671
(301) 405-3363

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr. Akin Akturk
akin.akturk@coolcadelectronics.com
7101 Poplar Avenue
Takoma Park, MD 20912 - 4671
(301) 405-3363

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Lisa Sachar
lisa.sachar@coolcadelectronics.com
7101 Poplar Avenue
Takoma Park, MD 20912 - 4671
(301) 529-9517

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 5
End: 8

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
High Power/Voltage Electronics is a Technology Available (TAV) subtopic that includes NASA Intellectual Property (IP). Do you plan to use the NASA IP under the award?
No

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
The ultimate goal of this proposal is to provide NASA space SEE and TID tolerant high voltage and low on-resistance silicon carbide power devices that meet the capability performance goals in the NASA technology roadmap. These objectives are important for the upcoming missions such as Io Observer, Saturn probe and Europa. Additionally, improving the single event / radiation hardness of silicon carbide devices would benefit the Orion spacecraft project in terms of power and advanced space power systems in terms of mass. Specifically mass savings are tremendous with the use of radiation hardened high voltage and power devices: A possible use of 300 V solar arrays instead of the 120 V option for solar electric propulsion would decrease the payload by as much as 2.5 tons with larger voltage operation resulting in further weight cuts. This is only practically achievable using radiation hardened silicon carbide devices as the silicon on-resistance versus radiation hardening penalty renders the silicon option not beneficial for conversion efficiencies.

To achieve space SEE and TID tolerant silicon carbide power devices, we will follow two parallel paths.
First, we are partnering with Cree (Wolfspeed) to determine heavy ion and TID susceptibility of their Gen2 1200 V power MOSFETs. We will also devise experiments to understand and identify failure mechanisms leading to the measured behavior. In Phase I, we will pursue these experiments, and start device modeling these Gen2 devices. In Phase II, we will build on this foundation to come up with possible rad-hard designs that will be newly fabricated and tested.

Second, CoolCAD also plans to design, lay out and fabricate JFET based silicon carbide high voltage / power devices. This provides an alternative to Cree's MOS based power device. In Phase I, we will fabricate a prototype JFET power device, and plan to also heavy ion test this device to determine its vulnerability to heavy ions and TID.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
An example immediate benefit of the space hardened high voltage parts with voltage ratings >300 V is that they would enable next generation high-power electric propulsion systems beyond their current limit of 5 kW. Use of a wide bandgap semiconductor such as silicon carbide would also increase their efficiency beyond that is currently achieved in these systems, which is >92%. Silicon carbide as being the most mature among the wide bandgap semiconductors in terms of fabrication and processing offers an enabling technology for meeting the NASA technology roadmap goals and milestones. The silicon on-resistance versus radiation hardening penalty renders the silicon option not beneficial for conversion efficiencies.

Of particular importance is to meet the capability performance goals in the NASA technology roadmap. Improving the radiation tolerance of SiC devices would benefit the Orion spacecraft project in terms of power, advanced space power systems in terms of mass, and high-temperature boost power processing units and the Venus Mobile Explorer in terms of extreme environment capabilities. Additionally, this would benefit missions such as Io Observer, Saturn probe and Europa, and Design Reference Missions (DRMs) 5 to 9. Specifically mass savings are tremendous: A possible use of 300 V solar arrays instead of the 120 V option for solar electric propulsion would decrease the payload by approximately 2.5 tons with larger voltage operation resulting in further weight cuts.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Government and Military: As in the case of NASA applications, the same weight reduction and efficiency gains hold for the government and military spacecrafts, and therefore we expect the outcomes of this proposal benefit the larger community in general.

Private Sector: As NASA is looking forward to contracting out some of the future space missions to companies such as SpaceX, these companies are looking forward to finding ways to reduce costs while maintaining reliability and safety. The proposed work would benefit these companies in terms of cost savings tremendously.

Production and Commercialization: The space radiation hard components industry is a few hundred million dollar market mostly dominated by companies such as International Rectifier (now part of Infineon). It is our aim not only to provide alternatives to these companies but also provide alternative semiconductor solutions such as silicon carbide based devices.

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.)
Characterization
Conversion
Destructive Testing
Distribution/Management
Models & Simulations (see also Testing & Evaluation)
Nondestructive Evaluation (NDE; NDT)
Photon Sails (Solar; Laser)

Form Generated on 04-26-16 15:14