EDWARDS AFB, Calif. – Two proposals submitted by NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center are among 18 Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) advanced concept flight research proposals selected by NASA for Phase 2 contract negotiations.
Barron Associates, paired with the University of Virginia, both located in Charlottesville, Va., was selected for their research proposal entitled "Active Flow Control with Adaptive Design Techniques for Improved Aircraft Safety."
Migma Systems, Inc. of Walpole, Mass., paired with Louisiana State University's Department of Mechanical Engineering, Baton Rouge, La., was selected for funding of their research proposal relating to an "On-line Real-time Tribology Failure Detection System."
Barron Associates' STTR proposal seeks to develop synthetic jet actuator technology, said Mike Allen, contracting officer's technical representative for Barron's proposal at NASA Dryden.
"Synthetic jets pulse air through small openings in an aircraft's skin to cause changes in airflow around the wing or tail without having to move a control surface," Allen explained. "Barron will look specifically at the use of synthetic jets and adaptive control to allow a transport aircraft to retain control through a wider range of flight conditions and angle of attack."
Migma Systems proposed further development and testing of a ball bearing fault detection and health monitoring system for spacecraft mechanical parts developed under their Phase I STTR project. The system would not only enhance the reliability of precision machinery used in tracking systems, telescopes and other space instruments, but could also be used in a wide range of commercial industries such as refining, metals, food processing, power and pharmaceutical manufacturing.
Ross Hathaway, contracting officer's technical representative at NASA Dryden for Migma's proposal, said the firm's technique to identify multiple fault modes related to friction within the bearing contact may be applicable to the Integrated Vehicle Health Management project under NASA's Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate.
"However, this could have so much commercial payoff that it is a worthwhile innovation to pursue," he added.
The STTR program is designed to stimulate technological innovation, increase the use of small businesses in meeting federal research and development needs, and increase private sector commercialization of innovations derived from federally funded research. The program requires a collaborative research effort between a small business concern and a research institution.
Phase 2 continues development of the most promising Phase 1 projects begun under NASA's 2005 STTR program. Selection criteria include technical merit and innovation, Phase 1 results, value to NASA, commercial potential and company capabilities. Phase 2 contracts receive up to $600,000 for a performance period up to two years.
The 18 STTR projects selected by NASA for contract negotiations and funding have a total value of approximately $11 million, and involve 17 small, high technology firms in 10 states. The selected firms will collaborate with 15 research institutions in 13 states.
Additional information about the NASA technology transfer program and a complete listing of the selected companies is available at: http://sbir.nasa.gov
For more on NASA technology transfer, visit www.nasa.gov/vision/earth/technologies/spinoffs_index.htmll
For more information about NASA Dryden Flight Research Center and its research projects, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/centers/dryden.
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