FCAPD Protective Coating for Space Tethers

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNM07AA45C
Agency Tracking Number: 066076
Amount: $100,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2007
Solicitation Year: 2006
Solicitation Topic Code: S7.04
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
626 Whitney Street, San Leandro, CA, 94577-1116
DUNS: 836439968
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Andrew Gerhan
 Principal Investigator
 (510) 483-4156
Business Contact
 Mahadevan Krishnan
Title: Business Official
Phone: (510) 483-4156
Email: krishnan@aasc.net
Research Institution
Alameda Applied Sciences Corporation (AASC) proposes to demonstrate extended service lifetime of space tethers in the Low Earth Orbit (LEO) environment by using Filtered Cathodic Arc Plasma Deposition (FCAPD) to deposit a high quality protective coating onto space tether material. Protective coatings deposited by FCAPD have low defect density, excellent adhesion to space tether material, low mass and thickness and have been shown in initial laboratory tests to protect against atomic oxygen (AO) erosion on Kapton as well as Zylon. Because of the low process temperature (<80 oC), FCAPD can minimize the thermal effects the process has on the tether material, which is believed to be a major disadvantage of current types of protective coatings such as Photosil , TOR-LM and POSS. These polymer coatings offer a level of protection against AO and UV damage, but at a significant cost to the tether's tensile strength .

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

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