NASA SBIR 2022-I Solicitation

Proposal Summary

Proposal Information

Proposal Number:
22-1- Z13.02-1178
Subtopic Title:
Mechanisms for Extreme Environments
Proposal Title:
Flexible Dust-Excluding Fiber Seals

Small Business Concern

   
Firm:
          
Off Planet Research, LLC
          
   
Address:
          
1130 Marine View Drive Suite A-2, Everett, WA 98201
          
   
Phone:
          
(253) 391-0293                                                                                                                                                                                
          

Principal Investigator:

   
Name:
          
Vincent Roux
          
   
E-mail:
          
vince@offplanetresearch.com
          
   
Address:
          
1130 W Marine View Drive, WA 98201 - 1500
          
   
Phone:
          
(125) 339-1029                                                                                                                                                                                
          

Business Official:

   
Name:
          
Melissa Roth
          
   
E-mail:
          
melissa@offplanetresearch.com
          
   
Address:
          
1130 Marine View Drive Suite A-2, WA 98201 - 1500
          
   
Phone:
          
(425) 931-7165                                                                                                                                                                                
          

Summary Details:

   
Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) :                                                                                                                                                          
Begin: 3
End: 4
          
          
     
Technical Abstract (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words):

A multi-application solution for excluding dust in planetary regolith must be developed if landed technology is going to operate for an acceptable amount of time.  A range of dust management & mitigation innovations must be used for operations on dusty planetary surfaces.  This is especially true in dynamic regolith environments like rovers, ISRU plants, excavation, & EVAs where multiple layers of dust protection & exclusion are needed.

 

We will develop a flexible dust-excluding seal to provide multiple technologies with the protection they need to fulfill their missions.  The dust seals will be adaptable for use in static joints, covers, hatches, linear actuators, bearings, rotary joints, hinges, & linkages, & increase system life to provide a greater return on investment.  The nature of these dust seals allows for their rapid development for space environment testing.  Due to the materials used, producing the dust seals using in-situ resources can be explored for future missions.

 

The dust seal will not rely on elastomers or polymers that fail due to intense temperatures or volatile depletion in the vacuum of space.  The materials are resistant to many chemicals & oxidizers.  They will be capable of operating for 10s to 100s of months with little to no maintenance as part of a complete dust strategy.

 

The dust seals will be made with fine stainless steel and/or basalt fibers that align & interlock when compressed, conforming to the joint surfaces to seal out dust.  The fibers have a naturally low friction coefficient on smooth, hard surfaces which makes them ideal for use in dynamic & static applications.  The dust seals do not require a solid film or lubrication.  The dust seals retain a degree of flexibility & compressibility so they can be re-used.  The fibers can also be coated with other materials to impart additional useful properties such as shedding dust.

          
          
     
Potential NASA Applications (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words):

The dust-excluding seals in this proposal will be usable on any NASA landed mission on the Moon, Mars, and other worlds. The seal features can be adapted for use in a wide range of static joints, covers, hatches, linear actuators, bearings, rotary joints, hinges, and linkages. We anticipate further testing, research, and conversations with potential end users will indicate other uses of these dust seals.

          
          
     
Potential Non-NASA Applications (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words):

These dust-excluding seals will be usable on any NASA landed mission on the Moon, Mars, and other worlds. The seal features can be adapted for use in a wide range of static joints, covers, hatches, linear actuators, bearings, rotary joints, hinges, and linkages. We anticipate further testing, research, and conversations with potential end users will indicate other uses of these dust seals.

          
          
     
Duration:     6
          
          

Form Generated on 05/25/2022 15:34:18