SPHERES/Universal ISS Battery Charging Station

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX12CA58C
Agency Tracking Number: 104349
Amount: $833,551.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2012
Solicitation Year: 2010
Solicitation Topic Code: O3.02
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
1 Broadway, 12th Floor, Cambridge, MA, 02142-1189
DUNS: 604717165
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 John Merk
 Principal Investigator
 (617) 500-4887
Business Contact
 Scott Hart
Title: Financial Analyst
Phone: (617) 500-4892
Email: shart@aurora.aero
Research Institution
With the retiring of the shuttle fleet, up-mass and down-mass to ISS are at a premium. The space station itself has a limited lifecycle as well, thus long-term and/or high-risk development programs pose issues for science 'return on investment', if the technology cannot be adequately matured before the station is decommissioned. Thus innovative systems and technologies that minimize impact on limiting resources such as up-mass, down-mass and crew time, and can do so in the near- to mid-term, are highly desirable. One such area includes the various rechargeable battery systems on ISS used extensively for cameras, camcorders, laptops, communication systems and other portable science and diagnostic equipment. A common (universal) battery charging system for ISS, with the flexibility to accommodate current and future rechargeable battery requirements for payloads and equipment, could reduce the cost of use of the ISS for payload developers. Such a system would not only simplify the safety and integration process for battery-operated ISS applications, but also reduce up-mass by making use of existing ISS resources. In its SBIR Phase I program, Aurora Flight Sciences laid the groundwork for such a system, based on the needs of current and planned ISS battery system requirements. The results of the study indicate that a universal rechargeable battery system is feasible and could significantly reduce up-mass and crew-time to support current and future ISS programs. Expanding on the feasibility study performed in Phase I, Aurora will deliver a protoflight charger system and supporting documentation at the conclusion of Phase II. The proposed system will be fully developed in compliance with NASA safety and integration criteria within the 2-year SBIR Phase II timeframe, facilitating procurement of flight and ground support hardware by NASA in a potential Phase III program.

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

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