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The Application of 3D Additive Machining to Enhance the Affordability of a Small Launcher Booster Stage

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX14CM44P
Agency Tracking Number: 140069
Amount: $124,978.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: T1.02
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: 2014
Award Year: 2014
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2014-06-20
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2014-12-19
Small Business Information
389 Haines Avenue
Long Beach, CA 90814-1841
United States
DUNS: 004957598
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Christopher Bostwick
 Chief Engineer
 (661) 547-9779
Business Contact
 John Garvey
Title: Business Official
Phone: (562) 498-2984
Research Institution
 University of California, San Diego
 Shelby Mayoral
9500 Gilman Drive, #0411
La Jolla, CA 92093-0411
United States

 (858) 534-3331
 Domestic Nonprofit Research Organization

The technical innovation proposed here expands upon early research into the viability of additive machining (AM) for liquid rocket engine components and other emerging capabilities to initiate TRL 6 flight test evaluations of candidate applications that could enhance the affordability of a small launch vehicle (SLV) booster stage.

University of California, San Diego (USCD) has achieved success in applying 3D AM to fabricate a 200 lbf-thrust LOX/kerosene engine. Concurrently, the Garvey Spacecraft Corporation (GSC) team continues to make progress in the development and flight testing of key elements for a future low-cost nanosat launch vehicle (NLV). These NASA-sponsored NLV designs, concept of operations (CONOPS) and cost metrics based on actual flight operations now serve as references for evaluating emerging technologies like UCSD's AM engine(s) to implement an SLV first stage that achieves the aggressive cost, performance and sizing goals specified in the T1.02 subtopic description. This is exactly the same approach that was followed under a previous NASA STTR that successfully demonstrated a TRL 6 for an advanced CMC-lined ablative engine chamber. Phase I flight testing features a subscale host vehicle, while Phase II then follows with an SLV-scale prototype booster.

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

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