Shape Memory Bio-Suit

Award Information
Agency:
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Amount:
$100,000.00
Program:
STTR
Contract:
NNJ06JD82C
Solitcitation Year:
2005
Solicitation Number:
N/A
Branch:
N/A
Award Year:
2006
Phase:
Phase I
Agency Tracking Number:
050234
Solicitation Topic Code:
T5.01
Small Business Information
Mide Techology Corporation
200 Boston Avenue, Suite 1000, Medford, MA, 02155-4242
Hubzone Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Duns:
786127522
Principal Investigator
 Marthinus van Schoor
 Principal Investigator
 () -
 tienie@mide.com
Business Contact
 Petra Botha
Title: Business Official
Phone: (781) 306-0609
Email: pbotha@mide.com
Research Institution
 Massachusetts Institute of Technology
 Not J Available
 77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA, 02139
 (617) 253-3906
 Domestic nonprofit research organization
Abstract
Spacesuit systems for planetary EVAs must maximize human productivity and provide the astronaut with the capability to perform useful work tasks. Mide plans to work with MIT to develop mechanisms to augment astronaut productivity during advanced EVA missions. We propose to demonstrate the feasibility of using shape memory polymers (SMPs) to provide pressurizing life support in the Bio-Suit, an advanced EVA system based on mechanical counterpressure (MCP) that is being designed to provide a "second skin" biomechanically and cybernetically augmented human performance capacity for planetary exploration. SMPs are "smart" polymers whose pliability makes them comfortable to wear against the skin. However, their material properties and shape can also be controlled using external stimuli such as temperature, electricity or stress, making them particularly appropriate for use in a "second skin" spacesuit that adapts to the astronaut's shape changes during EVA movements. Our initiative would be the first-ever demonstration of the use of smart materials in an MCP spacesuit; as such, this innovation could potentially accelerate the development of space-rated MCP suits because it would provide both a means of increasing the pressure production and control whilst maintaining user comfort and usability ? competing requirements which have hindered development of previous MCP spacesuits.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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