Versatile Structural Radiation Shielding (VSRS)

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA9453-12-M-0336
Agency Tracking Number: F121-062-0588
Amount: $149,941.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2012
Solicitation Year: 2012
Solicitation Topic Code: AF121-062
Solicitation Number: 2012.1
Small Business Information
Tethers Unlimited, Inc.
11711 N. Creek Pkwy S., Suite D113, Bothell, WA, -
DUNS: 877425330
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Jonathan Wrobel
 Space Systems Engineer
 (425) 486-0100
Business Contact
 Robert Hoyt
Title: CEO&Chief Scientist
Phone: (425) 486-0100
Research Institution
ABSTRACT: We propose to adapt additive manufacturing techniques to fabricate multifunctional"Versatile Structural Radiation Shielding"(VSRS) components that provide multi-layer radiation shielding, multi-layer thermal insulation, electro-magnetic interference (EMI) shielding, and structural strength. Our approach of using additive manufacturing techniques, such as Selective Laser Sintering and Fused Deposition Modeling, to create multi-material, multi-layer structures enables more affordable and customizable radiation shielding that can be printed quickly at flight-ready quality and in geometries that serve multiple purposes. This game-changing technology uses the design freedom offered by additive manufacturing to make full use of the mass-savings of multi-layer radiation shielding, by being able to fabricate such multi-layer shielding in arbitrary geometries. This alone facilitates up to a 60% mass savings over single-material approaches. Further mass and cost savings are achievable by being able to produce radiation shielding structures that can serve multi-purpose functionality: the shielding can be designed to concurrently serve as structure, multi-layer thermal insulation, and EMI shielding. This new approach is expected to reduce both lead times and schedule costs due to the ease of manufacturing intricate structures with additive manufacturing.In the Phase II effort, sample testing in radiation environments will be pursued to characterize the performance and to qualify the technology. BENEFIT: Versatile Structural Radiation Shielding technology is targeted at meeting the needs of the DoD, NASA, and commercial missions who seek to extend mission life and improve performance through cost-effective radiation shielding. This new radiation-shielding technology will be able to be used at several levels: as stand-alone casing/shielding for electronics, as both structure and shielding, or as multi-layer insulation that also serves as structure, radiation shielding, and EMI shielding. Since nearly all spacecraft use MLI and many use radiation shielding, there is a large potential market for the Versatile Radiation Shielding. With the degree of flexibility inherent in VRS, it is appropriate for use in large communication satellites down to the CubeSat scale or smaller. The cost to implement the VRS technology scales with the implementation, making it affordable at all scales. This includes academia, private, and government satellite programs.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

Agency Micro-sites

US Flag An Official Website of the United States Government