Automated High-Volume Manufacturing of Modular Photovoltaic Panel Assemblies for Space Solar Arrays

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX13CC46P
Agency Tracking Number: 125220
Amount: $124,801.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2013
Solicitation Year: 2012
Solicitation Topic Code: H8.04
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
Deployable Space Systems, Inc.
CA, Goleta, CA, 93117-3108
DUNS: 825308732
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Brian Spence
 Principal Investigator
 (805) 722-8090
Business Contact
 Brian Spence
Title: Business Official
Phone: (805) 722-8090
Research Institution
Deployable Space Systems, Inc. (DSS) will focus the proposed SBIR program on the creation and development of an automated robotic manufacturing infrastructure designed to mass-produce DSS's Integrated Modular Blanket Assembly (IMBA) common photovoltaic Standard Power Modules (SPM's). The proposed development will implement automated manufacturing processes for CIC-ing, glassing, stringing, laydown, and acceptance testing of interconnected photovoltaic devices onto an ultra-lightweight IMBA/SPM modular flexible blanket assembly through simple and commercially available pick-and-place robotic manufacturing techniques / infrastructure. Automated manufacturing of IMBA/SPM photovoltaic panel assemblies will provide an industry paradigm shift for affordability / cost-savings when compared to current labor intensive manufacturing processes. Unlike the current industry approach which is only focused on increasing the device area that only minimally reduces panel assembly costs, the proposed automated manufacturing will attack the highest cost and most labor intensive components of manufacturing a panel assembly, namely; CICing, glassing, stringing, panel laydown, and acceptance testing. By incorporating automated manufacturing the proposed IMBA/SPM photovoltaic flexible blanket assembly promises to provide ultra-affordable high-performance and repeatable high-quality modules for future NASA Space Science and Exploration missions, and particularly for ultra-high-power SEP missions.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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