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Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Tech Transfer

An Ultralow Power Fast-Response Nano-TCD CH4 sensor for UAV Airborne Measurements, Phase I

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

In this project, KWJ proposes to develop a low power, fast response, lightweight miniature CH4 measurement system based on KWJ nano-TCD sensor for airborne measurement operation. KWJ has developed patented sub-µm dimension TCDs, with ultra low power consumption (<10µW), <1µsec response time, very high stability (>10^9 measurements without re-calibration), and coupling with simple electronic circuits and algorithms. In Phase I, KWJ will fabricate nano-TCD CH4 sensor, improve the sensitivity such that 5ppm accuracy will be obtained, and characterize the sensor on a bench-top testing system to demonstrate CH4 detection with all target specifications. In Phase II, the prototype sensing system (1cmx1cm, 10g package) will be built and integrated with NASA UAVs for field testing. The proposed sensor will be ideal for airborne gas surveys. This sensor is part of a broader effort to develop smaller, faster, lower power and more cost effective alternative sensors for a wide range of applications. This platform will advance not only the research fields of atmospheric research, climate change, global change biology, and ecology, but for NASA's future spacecraft programs as well as KWJ's own terrestrial-industrial applications. This work has synergy within NASA and can collaborate with ongoing NASA SiC sensor developments in Phase II. More »

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