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Reduced Shielding, Rugged, Scalable-Electrical Power Converter for Fission-Power Systems

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: 80NSSC18P2162
Agency Tracking Number: 189812
Amount: $124,978.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: Z1
Solicitation Number: SBIR_18_P1
Solicitation Year: 2018
Award Year: 2018
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2018-07-27
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2019-02-15
Small Business Information
1965 Lycoming Creek Road, Suite 205
Williamsport, PA 17701-1251
United States
DUNS: 028856420
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Ross Bird
 (570) 322-2700
Business Contact
 Cathy Bower
Phone: (570) 322-2700
Research Institution

NASA Fission Surface Power Generation systems are weight challenged based mostly on the very conservative radiation tolerance specification of COTS components and in terms of lander limitations for surface operational uses. The proposed programs will drastically reduce both the mass of the shielding and the amount of shielding necessary to protect power and control electronics.  Moreover, it enables flexibility of adding additional fission power sources in a manner that maximizes overall conversion of power generator outputs to maximum usable power, even if one unit degrades or fails.  The new solution approach leverages two decades of previous work for the US Navy in extremely high specific power controllers and power systems and recent efforts for the Army in extremely high efficiency power conversion.  In addition, QorTek will use and expand its catalog of COTS component radiation ratings through continued testing and documentation throughout the program.  Integration of state-of-the-art technologies such as SiC and GaN MOSFETs, micro-channel oscillating heat pipes, and digital control systems will enable an unparalleled level of system control while providing a solution focused on extreme environmental conditions required for long duration surface power missions. Combining state of the art power and control solutions with verified radhard test data, QorTek will provide NASA missions the ability to have mass effective PMAD system hardware with minimal protection through shielding.  This novel system will be developed through to brassboard hardware demonstration in the Phase I and exhaustive testing in Phase II.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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