NASA SBIR 2017 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 171 H7.02-9710
SUBTOPIC TITLE: In-Space Manufacturing of Precision Parts
PROPOSAL TITLE: Metal Advanced Manufacturing Bot-Assisted Assembly (MAMBA) Process

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Tethers Unlimited, Inc.
11711 North Creek Parkway South, Suite D113
Bothell, WA 98011 - 8808
(425) 486-0100

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr. Rachel Muhlbauer
muhlbauer@tethers.com
11711 N. Creek Pkwy S., D113
Bothell, WA 98011 - 8808
(425) 486-0100

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr. Robert Hoyt
hoyt@tethers.com
11711 North Creek Parkway South, Suite D113
Bothell, WA 98011 - 8808
(425) 486-0100

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 2
End: 3

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
In-Space Manufacturing of Precision Parts 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)
Tethers Unlimited, Inc. (TUI) proposes to develop the Metal Advanced Manufacturing Bot-Assisted Assembly (MAMBA) Process, a robotically managed metal press and milling system used to create precision parts on orbit. This manufacturing process provides an alternative to 3D printing metals in space, which is difficult due to space environment or print quality issues. Instead, the MAMBA-Process relies on an ingot forming technology to create a metal ingot. This ingot can then be milled and machined to form a precision part using a standard CNC milling technique. In order to minimize astronaut time and exposure to the process, the MAMBA-Process will be outfitted with a robotic assistant, using robotic assistance to remove the ingot from the press, to place the ingot in the mill, and to perform tool changes on the mill. The MAMBA effort will also develop a novel process for management and recycling of metal chips in a microgravity environment. Testing of the process technologies will lead to a lab demonstration of ingot formation and milling in the Phase I effort, maturing the MAMBA Process to TRL-3. In the Phase II effort, a full scale engineering unit will be built and tested to begin validating this technology for flight.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The MAMBA-Process will support long-duration manned missions such as Manned Mars Missions and the ISS by enabling manufacture of precision metal parts on-orbit as needed. Rather than fly a storage room of potential spare parts, the MAMBA-Process can be used to make these components when a need arises, limiting the initial launch volume. In addition, the acceptance of used parts into the Positrusion-Press sub-technology allows for the recycling of used or failed parts, minimizes stored waste, and enables a closed loop ecosystem for metal fabrication. The ability to re-use mass taken on mission, dependent on the mission stage, will greatly increase capability per budgeted mass. In addition, the MAMBA-Process will enable the flexibility to replace critical components when resupply is impossible or improbable.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
he MAMBA-Process technologies can support commercial spaceflight companies with a focus on manned space travel by enabling in-space manufacture of precision metal parts. Its technologies will be critical to TUI's OrbWeaver project to enable in-space manufacturing of large phased array antennas. Additionally, the MAMBA process will have utility aboard submarines and other remote facilities where resupply is limited.

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.)
In Situ Manufacturing
Metallics

Form Generated on 04-19-17 12:59