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High specific power and cost effective solar array for spacecraft, lighter than air vehicles, and UAVs

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA9453-14-M-0009
Agency Tracking Number: F13A-T06-0011
Amount: $149,580.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: AF13-AT06
Solicitation Number: 2013.A
Solicitation Year: 2013
Award Year: 2014
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2013-12-04
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2014-09-04
Small Business Information
18 Technology Suite 139
Irvine, CA -
United States
DUNS: 078638940
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Hugh Cook
 Partner and CTO
 (949) 679-3950
Business Contact
 Rob Sjostedt
Title: Partner and CEO
Phone: (949) 679-3950
Research Institution
 Colorado State Univ.
 Steven H Strauss
601 Howes Street Room 408
Ft. Collins, CO 80523-1301
United States

 (970) 491-5104
 Nonprofit college or university

ABSTRACT: Space solar power systems range in size from the International Space Station with 8 solar arrays producing 84,000 watts all the way down to body-mounted single wafers on individual cubesats. The current state-of-the-art relies on multi-junction gallium arsenide or inverted metamorphic cells affixed to rigid structural panels. The need for a low-mass, high energy output solar array for space applications is evident. Of the numerous technologies showing promise to reduce space solar power system cost and weight, thin film technologies show the most promise, specifically thin-film devices made from Organic Photovoltaic (OPV) materials. VectorSum and Colorado State University (CSU) have teamed up to investigate a large number of the latest candidate OPVs, substrates, and up-scaling methods. Along with a concept for a novel deployment system, the team will provide an OPV solar array capable of generating 200W at 12V in a pre-launch storage volume of less than 1U cubesat volume (6cm x 10cm x 10cm) and<0.5kg. The solar array design is a unique solution of deployable folding substrates, laser welding, proprietary pultruded carbon rods, all deployed using simple clock springs, and mounted on a gimbaled platform for solar tracking. BENEFIT: The significance of the Phase I results is that we will create a catalog of numerous organic material combinations, and characterized their susceptibility to the space radiation environment. Using this information, we will design a high fidelity ground test unit representative of a flight system for Phase II.

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

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