Skip Navigation
SBIR/STTR

Canfield Joint - Vibration Isolation System for High Precision Pointing, Phase II

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

During our Phase I STTR effort, Balcones Technologies, LLC (BT) and The University of Texas at Austin Center for Electromechanics (CEM) successfully achieved all Phase I objectives and developed concept designs for controlled Canfield Joint Systems (CJS) for numerous applications that currently employ two-axis gimbal systems, including flywheel energy storage systems, integrated flywheel energy storage and attitude control systems, controlled moment gyros (CMG), and pointing systems for satellite-to-earth and satellite-to-satellite space optical communications (SOC). While all applications offered advantages for CJS compared to gimbal alternatives, a major result from our Phase I commercialization study was that the highest payoff Phase II demonstration for NASA and other commercial applications would focus on a CJS simultaneously sized for two applications: small satellite CMG and small satellite optical communications. Since the SOC application is more demanding and this emerging application offers more terrestrial and space applications, this application will serve as our demonstration target for Phase II. Additionally, since the SOC application has demanding vibration isolation requirements (especially for deep space communications) and since the BT-CEM team has very advanced expertise in this area, our Phase II demonstration will include development and integration of a vibration isolation system (VIS). Some key CJS-SOC features include: More than 30% improvement in pointing accuracy and precision compared to 2 axis gimbal systems; Integrated vibration isolation system to meet deep space optical communication systems; Also sized for small CMG application; Wide field of regard; Scalable to large flywheel applications; Maximum use of COTS components; Exploits team core capabilities in vibration isolation systems and high precision, high accuracy point systems. More »

Anticipated Benefits

Primary U.S. Work Locations and Key Partners

Share this Project

Organizational Responsibility

Project Management

Project Duration

Technology Maturity (TRL)

Technology Areas

A final report document may be available for this project. If you would like to request it, please contact us.

^