NASA 1998 SBIR Phase I

PROPOSAL NUMBER: 98-1 08.02-9591

PROJECT TITLE: Avian Hatchling Habitat for Bioregenerative, Physiological, & Behavorial Studies


Advanced technology is needed to help better understand problems associated with sustaining humans in space. Animal life science research in space provides valuable insight into musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, neurological, and vestibular problems experienced by humans during space flight. The Avian Hatchling Habitat is an innovative, automated system for supporting investigations of biological responses of animals in space. The Habitat provides innovations for accommodating, observing, measuring, and manipulating adult quail or newborn chicks in microgravity. It builds on SHOT's prior flight hardware research, including the Avian Development Facility, which is being developed for the Space Station Biological Research Project. Phase I objectives are to confirm the technical feasibility and commercial viability of the Habitat, and complete designs of the modular cage, feed/water, and waste management systems. The Phase I effort will culminate in a detailed report, which will include research analysis, trade studies, and design details. The report will provide a final assessment of the suitability of the Habitat in meeting both NASA and commercial needs. Continuing Phase II support will allow development and evaluation of a high-fidelity Avian Hatchling Habitat prototype. Eventually, flight versions will offer enhancement of science return and reduction in cost of biological research on ISS.


An anaerobic digester developed for the waste management system of the Avian Hatchling Habitat incorporates a cost efficient technology, which eliminates a major source of polution and odor associated with the poultry industry. Furthermore, the digester converts poultry manure into a high grade of purely organic fertilizer. The development of this system will result in two commercial by-products with vast consumer market potential: anaerobic digester units that can be marketed to poultry producers, and a purely organic fertilizer, which the poultry producers can sell on the open market.Technology evolving from the Avian Hatchling Habitat will catalyze commercial space development by helping resolve problems associated with human space flight. Additionally, since the Habitat allows the life cycle to be completed (egg to egg), the avian holds great promise as a bioregenerative food source for long term flights, and eventually, space colonization on the Moon, Mars, and other planetary bodies. In turn, basic biological research with the Habitat could lead to new developments in the diagnosis and treatment of various musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, neurological, and vestibular abnormalities in humans.


Heidi Platt
Space Hardware Optimization Technology, Inc.
5605 Featherengill Road
Floyd Knobs , IN 47119


Space Hardware Optimization Technology
5605 Featherengill Road
Floyd Knobs , IN 47119