Aromatic Thermosetting Copolyesters for Ablative TPS

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX10RA54P
Agency Tracking Number: 094125
Amount: $100,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2010
Solicitation Year: 2009
Solicitation Topic Code: X9.01
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
2100 South Oak Street, Suite 206, Champaign, IL, 61820-0910
DUNS: 041929402
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Chris Mangun
 Principal Investigator
 (217) 333-8279
 cmangun@cuaerospace.com
Business Contact
 David Carroll
Title: Vice President and COO
Phone: (217) 333-8274
Email: carroll@cuaerospace.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
Better performing ablative thermal protection systems than currently available are needed to satisfy requirements of the most severe crew exploration vehicles, such as the Mars Sample Return with 12-15 km/s Earth entry. The primary objective of CU Aerospace's Phase I work will be to fabricate and test aromatic thermosetting copolyesters (ATSP) composites for use as ablatives in next generation spacecraft missions. The synthetic development of novel aromatic thermosetting copolyesters was a major innovation in the field of polymer science. Previous testing of their capabilities showed excellent performance as adhesives, rigid foams, matrices for composites, and dielectrics for microelectronics. Only recently has this material been considered as a viable ablative due to its high temperature stability and excellent composite mechanical properties especially due to the liquid crystalline nature of the polymer, which allows a matching of CTE between fiber and matrix. Our team partner the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will assist CU Aerospace to perform basic research and provide technical support to accelerate the transition of ATSP polymers into ablative composites. If successful CU Aerospace envisions the ATSP to be utilized in a wide variety of applications in both civilian and military spacecraft, either as a retrofit or as a next-generation design.

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

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