Opterus granted NASA agreement to create big retracting blanket solar array

Sep 30, 2020 02:25 PM ET
  • The National Aeronautics as well as Space Administration (NASA) granted Opterus Research and also Development, Inc. a groundbreaking project that will certainly lead the way for very large lunar surface area solar arrays.
Opterus granted NASA agreement to create big retracting blanket solar array
Image: solardaily.com

Technologies created in the program will certainly additionally act as pathfinders for NASA's enthusiastic Moon to Mars program, which puts a premium on the requirement for reputable, multiple-use, retracting devices that can be packaged and released several times.

The six-month agreement, which was awarded via NASA's Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Technology Transfer (SBIR/STTR) program, will certainly begin development of a patent pending large-diameter Collapsible Tubular Mast (CTM).

The pole will make use of High Strain Composite (HSC) materials that decrease mechanical system part count by an order of size. The CTM Opterus is establishing will certainly take care of much better fastening, torsional, as well as flexing lots than any type of existing HSC deployable mast created to day.

" This approach is a fundamental shift far from open cross section HSC slit-tubes generally taken into consideration for usage in large selection applications," stated Thomas Murphey, CEO of Opterus.

" We're building a retractable pole that meets tightness as well as toughness needs of heritage express trusses at a fraction of the price. It will certainly sustain blanket ranges in space as large as numerous hundred meters across. What we're doing will blow away the dominating understandings of HSC toughness as well as efficiency."

This brand-new Phase I program is to be completed by March of 2021, as well as it leverages two additional Phase II SBIR programs Opterus has with NASA for covering and release mechanism advancement.

" This mix of SBIR programs sustains our long-lasting vision to productize as well as provide R-ROMA, a high performance Retractable-Rollable Mast Array," Murphey stated. "This is specifically what NASA's SBIR/STTR program looks for to accomplish with small companies such as Opterus."

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