NASA Tech Needs

Technology for Improved Performance of Release Agents in Die Casting

A materials company supplying specialty technical products to the foundry industry is seeking technology to allow a stepchange in performance of release agents/die lubricants for high-pressure die casting of non-ferrous (e.g. aluminium) components. Areas of interest include products that can be applied at a higher temperature to allow faster casting cycles, products that protect the die from damage caused by repeated heating and cooling cycles, and powder-based agents, and products that adhere quickly to steel.

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Email: nasatech@yet2.com
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In-Store Hair Analysis Tools

A company is seeking tools and devices that can be used instore to quickly classify hair types based on measured hair properties like hair thickness and/or damage level. Technologies include hair diagnostic devices/tools that can evaluate at least one of the following parameters: structure information; physical properties such as amount of curl, tensile strength, and stiffness; and cosmetic properties such as smoothness, friction, and resistance to frizz. Tools must be easy to use in-store, and results must be sensitive enough to differentiate between ranges of hair types.

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Email: nasatech@yet2.com
Phone: 781-972-0600

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Large Aperture Inflatable/Deployable Antennas and Their Role in NASA’s Vision for Space Exploration and Earth Science

As NASA evolves its vision for space exploration and Earth science, greater demands are placed on advanced communications and sensing systems to allow for higher data-rate communications from the Moon, Mars, and beyond, as well as for more precise Earth and planetary remote sensing activities. Taking into consideration the cost of launching hardware into space (about $20K per kg), as well as the fairings’ volume limitations, there is need for novel antenna technology concepts to circumvent these limitations, without jeopardizing the desired capabilities. To address this scenario, NASA is investigating the development of large aperture, inflatable/deployable antenna (IDA) technologies as a viable option to fulfill the aforementioned requirements. Attainment of these requirements demands overcoming a series of critical challenges as discussed below.

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Masking of Bitter Ingredients

A company seeks technology to mask ingredient bitterness in its oral delivery system. Specifically, it seeks materials and/or methods to increase the ability of their oral delivery mechanism to carry a given ingredient, while removing any associated bitterness. Possible solution areas include masking bitter components with sweet/sour/salty; coating bitter components to prevent tasting; temporary sensory blockers; and perception manipulation.

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Email: nasatech@yet2.com
Phone: 781-972-0600

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Alternative Approaches to Basis Weight Reduction in Paper

A company seeks technology to replace wood fiber in paper with a bulk filler material having less mass. The company seeks to make small, micron-scale, low-density particles. The filler material would have no negative impact on today’s lightweight paper specifications, including bulk (caliper), strength, stiffness, printability (ex. formation, porosity, showthrough), or brightness.

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Email: nasatech@yet2.com
Phone: 781-972-0600

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Energy Storage Technology to Power the Future in Space Exploration

By Carolyn Mercer, NASA Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, OH

NASA is focused on building a human outpost on the lunar surface. To reach this goal, there is a critical need to develop energy storage technologies to power the future lunar outpost. In particular, technology is required for outpost power generation for the lunar lander that will deliver outpost hardware, and for advanced extravehicular activity (EVA) suits. In every case, human-safe, reliable operation and low mass are critical to ensure the viability of extended stays on the lunar surface while minimizing the launch mass and the mass carried by astronauts and lunar rovers.

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Anti-Itch Non-Steroidal

A company is seeking technology (synthetic actives, natural actives, delivery systems) to eliminate itch for a variety of indications for over-the-counter applications; specifically, actives and/or delivery systems that will relieve itching. The technology should eliminate itching for a significant period of time (i.e. several hours, minimum). Alternatively, immediate relief (within 60 seconds) would be of interest. Any formulation is acceptable, but oral delivery or physical barrier approaches will not be considered.

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Email: nasatech@yet2.com
Phone: 781-972-0600

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Converting High-Molecular-Weight Polymer Emulsions Into Dry Form

A company that supplies chemicals, including inverse emulsions that consist of a very high- molecular-weight, water-soluble polymer dispersed in a continuous oil phase, is seeking technologies that can convert these emulsions to powdered form without losing any of the polymer properties. Known technologies include spray-drying and precipitation. Precipitation processes are based upon the water and oil being soluble in some polar solvents, while the high-molecular- weight polymer is insoluble in these solvents.

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Phone: 781-972-0600

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Centennial Challenges

The NASA Regolith Excavation Cha llenge was held on August 2 and 3 on the campus of the California Poly - technic State University in San Luis Obispo, CA. The competition required teams to build a roving excavator that could autonomously navigate, excavate, and transfer 150 kg of simulated lunar regolith (lunar soil) into a collector bin within 30 minutes. Excavating lunar regolith will be an important part of any construction projects or processing of natural resources on the Moon. NASA is looking for new ideas for excavation techniques that do not require excessively heavy machines or large amounts of power.

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Reducing Free Fatty Acids in Frying Oil

A food manufacturer is looking for a technology to extend the usability of its frying oils; specifically, technologies to reduce the formation of free fatty acids (FFA) during frying. The company seeks to change or control chemical reaction of hydrolysis without changing water content of the food itself. Taste, smell, color, and texture must not be affected. If the solution is an ingredient, the product must be natural and food-grade; synthesized compounds will not be evaluated.

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Phone: 781-972-0600

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