A Miniaturized SERS Based Sensor Technology for Liquid Hypergolic Propulsion Systems

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Missile Defense Agency
Contract: HQ0147-12-C-7891
Agency Tracking Number: B112-023-0247
Amount: $99,996.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2012
Solicitation Year: 2011
Solicitation Topic Code: MDA11-023
Solicitation Number: 2011.2
Small Business Information
515 Courtney Way - Suite B, Lafayette, CO, -
DUNS: 128688111
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Kevin Harsh
 Senior Scientist
 (303) 516-9075
Business Contact
 Michael Usrey
Title: VP of Business Development
Phone: (303) 516-9075
Email: musrey@sporian.com
Research Institution
Hypergolic fuels such as monomethylhydrazine, and oxidizers such as nitrogen tetroxide are attractive for use in divert and attitude control systems (DACS) for variety of reasons. However, due to their toxicity, corrosivity, carcinogenicity, and flammability, hypergolic fuels and oxidizers are corrosive represent a significant safety hazard in the event of leaks. Given the potential need to transport and deploy systems containing hypergolic propellants there is a need for safety technologies to be incorporated to detect potential hypergolic fuel related hazards. An ideal such sensor should: detect MMH/NTO leaks inside canisters to the levels of less than 50 ppm, have a standalone lifetime>4 years, be small, light weight, and low power, operate without providing false positive readings, provide"smart"sensor functionality, and facilitate logistically advantageous data transfer. The objective of the proposed work is to develop such a sensing module, based on the combination of a miniaturized surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) spectroscopy concept, and existing low-power wireless sensor network hardware. This Phase I effort will include: working with OEMs to define requirements, conducting chemical kinetics/degradation analyses, the evaluation of the sensing module hardware/packaging design concepts, and the construction and proof of principle demonstration of first generation hardware.

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

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