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A Grid-Sphere Electrode for Tether Current Collection

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNM04AA11C
Agency Tracking Number: 022754
Amount: $599,992.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: N/A
Award Year: 2004
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): N/A
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
1800 Quail Street, Suite 101
Newport Beach, CA 92660
United States
DUNS: 066183039
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Nobie Stone
 Principal Investigator
 (256) 971-7029
Business Contact
 Carte Bryant
Title: Director, Program Control
Phone: (256) 971-7812
Research Institution

The Grid-Sphere is a passive electrode contactor that relies on a very large area to allow the collection of large currents from the ionosphere. Dynamic drag is minimized by using a grid construction. This Grid-Sphere can provide electrodynamic tethers with the ability to passively collect arbitrarily large currents at the positive pole?requiring only low bias voltages. This makes current collection independent of tether length and eliminates hazardous high-voltage operations. The Phase-1 results include the development of grid-film materials with the required characteristics and the derivation of a linearized model of the current collection process?and clearly show the Grid-Sphere to be feasible and to collect current with virtually the same efficiency as a solid-surface spherical electrode of the same radius.

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

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