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Inspire - In-Mask Sensors for Physiological Investigation of Respiratory Exhalation

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Defense Health Agency
Contract: W81XWH-18-C-0310
Agency Tracking Number: H2-0283
Amount: $1,033,202.81
Phase: Phase II
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: DHP16C-002
Solicitation Number: 16.C
Solicitation Year: 2016
Award Year: 2021
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2021-06-30
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2023-06-30
Small Business Information
1585 Marauder St.
Chico, CA 95973-0000
United States
DUNS: 933302655
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Susana Carranza
 Senior Chemical Engineer
 (512) 589-0718
Business Contact
 Dr. Darby B. Makel
Phone: (530) 895-2771
Research Institution
 Sandia National Laboratories
 Anup K. Singh Anup K. Singh
1515 Eubank SE Array
Albuquerque, NM 87123-0000
United States

 (925) 294-1260
 Federally Funded R&D Center (FFRDC)

High concentrations of supplemental oxygen are used routinely by pilots and divers prior to and during missions to prevent and treat decompression sickness, avoid detection during covert operations, and to support oxygenation following pulmonary injury. Due to pulmonary oxygen toxicity (PO2T), exposure limits are imposed to prevent damage to pulmonary tissues. Current policy focuses on preventing PO2T in an operational environment by adhering to exposure limits that were developed based on empirical evidence of PO2T. However, individuals have variable tolerance and imposed generalized limits often lead to more stringent operational restrictions than required for a given individual, which in turn significantly impacts mission readiness. Breath analysis of VOCs provides a non-invasive monitoring and diagnose tool that helps identify the onset of diseases and physiological distress [1-4]. Analysis via gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) is the current gold standard. However, since GC-MS is not fieldable in typical operational environments, the current method relies on collecting samples by absorption in a tube with a binding matrix which is then sent to a laboratory for thermal desorption. The product being developed in this STTR program (with Sandia National Laboratories as the research institution partner) is an advanced multi-modal sensor system suitable for in-situ analysis of exhaled volatile organic compounds (VOCs) for pilots, divers, and field patients, along with relevant inorganic compounds. The In-Mask Sensors for Physiological Investigation of Respiratory Exhalation – INSPIRE combines a micro-preconcentrator (PC), a micro-gas chromatograph (GC) and miniature ion mobility spectrometer (IMS) based on low temperature cofired ceramic (LTCC) for detection of trace amounts of exhaled breath VOCs with miniature solid state sensors for inorganic compounds found in breath such as oxygen, carbon dioxide, and moisture. The battery operated, dive mask integrated sensor system will enable to monitor inorganics compounds and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in divers’ exhaled breath during deep diving.

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

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