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Highly Reliable LOX Pump for Vehicle Loading Operations

Award Information

National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2004 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Barber-Nichols, Inc.
CO Arvada, CO 80002-2707
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 2
Fiscal Year: 2004
Title: Highly Reliable LOX Pump for Vehicle Loading Operations
Agency: NASA
Contract: NNK04OA01C
Award Amount: $599,530.00


The current Shuttle LOX loading pumps have several issues requiring high-maintenance and resulting in low reliability. The proposed pump system would mitigate NASA's concerns on reliability in this critical application by virtue of the seal arrangement tested in Phase 1 and the design of each pump to be able to meet the current fill rates in the event of one unit's failure. Phase I focussed on the reliability issues surrounding the primary sealing arrangement in the LOX pumps and demonstrated the feasibility of a non-contacting combination of a dynamic seal and a purged labyrinth seal set as a highly reliable sealing solution for the primary seal for Liquid Oxygen (LOX) transfer pumps. Additionally, Phase I efforts produced a unique concept for a new LOX pumping system for vehicle loading operations. In the proposed system, two pumps would work in parallel to provide an increase in LOX transfer rate of 50%. The scope of work in Phase 2 will include the design and manufacture of this complete pump system composed of 2 pumps, pump performance testing on water, and cryogenic testing at KSC's ATDC facility.

Principal Investigator:

Bill Batton
Principal Investigator

Business Contact:

Dan Thoren
Small Business Information at Submission:

Barber-Nichols, Inc.
6325 W. 55th Avenue Arvada, CO 80002

EIN/Tax ID: 840568519
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No