USA flag logo/image

An Official Website of the United States Government

Compact, Lightweight, High Voltage Propellant Isolators

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
Technology Assessment & Transfer, Inc.
133 Defense Highway, Suite 212 Annapolis, MD -
View profile »
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2004
Title: Compact, Lightweight, High Voltage Propellant Isolators
Agency: NASA
Contract: NNC04CA69C
Award Amount: $66,353.00


TA&T, Inc. proposes an enabling fabrication process for high voltage isolators required in high power solar electric and nuclear electric propulsion (SEP and NEP, respectively). State-of-the-art propellant voltage isolators have sufficient performance for existing ion and Hall thruster engines with voltages of a few kilovolts. However, future high thrust, high specific impulse (Isp) engines will have to support beam voltages >10kV to meet performance requirements. If existing isolator designs are simply scaled-up for higher voltages, then a significant mass penalty is incurred. The proposed fabrication approach, known as ceramic stereolithography(CSL), is an automated, layered manufacturing process that enables net shape, monolithic ceramics with complex geometry. The process is beneficial as a rapid, low cost fabrication approach that enables exploration of novel isolator designs with complex internal flow passages. The process is also beneficial for isolator production, because it is capable of making the complex structures as a single piece ceramic, eliminating the liability associated with multi-piece construction necessary using conventional ceramic fabrication methods. The Phase I project will involve process development, device design, prototype fabrication and testing in collaboration with Aerojet Corporation (Redmond, WA).

Principal Investigator:

Walter Zimbeck
Principal Investigator

Business Contact:

Sharon Fehrenbacher
Business Official
Small Business Information at Submission:

Technology Assessment & Transfer, Inc.
133 Defense Hwy, Suite 212 Annapolis, MD 21401

EIN/Tax ID: 521253097
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No