SBIR Phase I: Vapor Generator for the Calibration of Explosive Trace Detectors

Award Information
Agency:
National Science Foundation
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$100,000.00
Award Year:
2006
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
0611204
Agency Tracking Number:
0611204
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
n/a
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
MicroFab Technologies Inc
1104 Summit Avenue, Plano, TX, 75074
Hubzone Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
n/a
Principal Investigator:
Donald Hayes
Dr
(972) 578-8076
dhayes@microfab.com
Business Contact:
Donald Hayes
Dr
(972) 578-8076
dhayes@microfab.com
Research Institution:
n/a
Abstract
This Small Business Innovation Research Phase I project aimes to design and build a digitally-controlled vapor generator that will enable field calibration of vapor trace detectors for explosives. The technology risk-elements concern precisely delivering, under digital control, a dilute explosive mixture to a heated surface, converting it to a vapor and then delivering the vapor plume to a trace explosive detector to be tested or calibrated. Other technology issues relate to vapor generator precision, repeatability, and instrument reliability. Engineering issues concern the design and fabrication of a handheld prototype based upon a disposable cartridge approach. The handheld vaporjet calibration instrument will include standard test protocols with a user-friendly computer interface. It is anticipated that, during Phase I, the handheld unit will be tested and characterized with existing trace detector systems. There are tens of thousands of vapor trace detector systems deployed in the field today. They are operated by military personnel in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere; they are operated by government agents in airports, sub-way system, ports, embassies, consulates and public facilities across the globe; they are operated by private industry to protect their customers, employees and facilities. All these systems must be calibrated and verified on a regular basis. This need requires standard testing protocols for trace and stand-off detection methods and vapor sampling calibration methods. Sales will come from the calibration of detectors in the field, on manufacturing lines, and sales to R&D institutions for sensor development. Ultimately, real-time vaporjet calibration units could be designed into next generation sensor systems to insure consistent accuracy. Societal benefits include improved trace detection of explosives and other chemical threats.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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