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Lightweight, Reliable Cryogenic Screen Channel Acquisition Devices with High Expulsion Efficiency

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: 80NSSC19C0198
Agency Tracking Number: 181251
Amount: $749,999.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: Z10
Solicitation Number: SBIR_18_P2
Solicitation Year: 2018
Award Year: 2019
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2019-07-01
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2021-06-30
Small Business Information
16 Great Hollow Road
Hanover, NH 03755-3116
United States
DUNS: 072021041
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Thomas Conboy
 (603) 643-3800
Business Contact
 Betsy Williams
Phone: (603) 643-3800
Research Institution

Refueling spacecraft in space offers tremendous benefits for increased spacecraft payload capacity and reduced launch cost. However, in a microgravity environment, acquiring vapor-free cryogenic liquid propellants from supply tanks and then transferring them to receiving tanks is very challenging. To address this challenge, Creare developed a robust, lightweight hybrid Liquid Acquisition Device (LAD) with screened channels for cryogenic propellants. The hybrid LAD has a novel configuration enabled by Crearersquo;s unique fabrication processes. Crearersquo;s LAD employs a hybrid capillary structure to position the residual liquid in a tank to optimum locations to maintain liquid supply for the LAD screen surfaces, and thus enhance the expulsion efficiency. Crearersquo;s innovative fabrication process reliably maintains the pore structure of the screen near bonding joints with its support frames. The lightweight support frames provide mechanical support for the screen to withstand launch vibrations. In Phase I, we successfully demonstrated the feasibility and performance benefits of our approach through designing, fabricating, and testing a proof-of-concept screened channel. In Phase II, we will build and demonstrate a laboratory-scale hybrid LAD and deliver it to NASA for further evaluation.

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

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