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Robust, Lightweight Wiring for Space Applications

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA9453-12-M-0063
Agency Tracking Number: F112-093-1414
Amount: $149,935.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: AF112-093
Solicitation Number: 2011.2
Solicitation Year: 2011
Award Year: 2012
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2012-02-10
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
1835 Energy Park Drive, Saint Paul, MN, -
DUNS: 023797335
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Tom Kukowski
 R&D Manager
 (651) 659-6763
Business Contact
 Tom Ashenbrenner
Title: Manager, Military Applications
Phone: (651) 659-6760
Research Institution
ABSTRACT: The military have been challenged to find ways of effectively shielding sensitive electronic equipment from electromagnetic interference (EMI) without adding a lot of weight to satellites (the more massive they are, the more fuel they need to achieve orbit). Copper wiring comprises one-third of the weight of a 15-ton satellite. Half of this wire weight is typically in the EMI shielding. However, that weight reductions must not come at the expense of EMI shielding effectiveness; wiring and connectors are particularly vulnerable to electromagnetic interference. As an alternative, carbon nanotubes (CNTs), when applied as thin-film composites, offer effective EMI shielding--they are lightweight, highly conductive, flexible and strong. This project will advance feasibility of using CNT-based wires for use space applications. This will project will develop the first CNT-based wire that meets the stringent electrical and mechanical requirements of ECSS-E-ST-50-12C (SpaceWire). Specifically our Phase I technical objectives are to: develop a requirements analysis for EMI shielding for Space Wires; develop prototype CNT shielded wires that is ECSS-E-ST-50-12C compliant; conduct validation testing of CNT shielded wires to make an initial assessment of robustness of cables; investigate termination strategies for the ECSS-E-ST-50-12C compliant CNT shielded wires. BENEFIT: The potential benefits of this innovation could include military development for future ground, air or space systems that have stringent weight requirements, including launch vehicles, UAVs, portable communications,small satellites,etc. Commercial Application: Any commercial development for electronic-heavy systems with stringent weight requirements, including jetliners, satellites, small computers, etc.

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

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