Heliospace Corp. proposes to develop a process and build a machine to fabricate helical booms that will allow a length increase of 85% over what is currently available at reduced cost, to greatly increase the speed of optimization and iteration of such boom designs, and to allow much more rapid manufacturing. Such a machine is already under construction, and work under Phase I of this proposal will complete it and develop the process to the point of producing single coils with the necessary properties. Phase II will add systems needed to produce complete booms and to allow the production of flight-clean booms and the addition of the coatings required for some applications.
Application to particle and fields suites where increasing the distance between sensors directly improves the science.
Longer helical booms allow higher resolution electric fields measurements without having to resort to more expensive and bulky solutions such as coilable masts.
Instruments such as the Langmuir probes flown on the MAVEN mission would benefit from longer booms.
Optimization of other properties such as push force as well as increased length will allow new uses of helical booms as actuators for space structures/antennas/mechanisms.
Military spacecraft would benefit from these longer booms as well. A proposed application using a helical boom to extend a radar reflector as far from a target vehicle as possible would benefit from longer booms.
Actuators for military and commercial space structures/antennas/mechanisms. Optimization for length and push force will improve the use for these deployables.