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Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Tech Transfer

In Situ Biological Reduction of Martian Sample Collection Devices, Phase I

Completed Technology Project

Project Description

In Situ Biological Reduction of Martian Sample Collection Devices, Phase I
Mars is a planet where life forms or their remnants may be found, all lander or probe missions to Mars must be cleaned and sterilized to the Category IV planetary protection requirements. Cross-contamination during sampling for in situ life-detection missions and sample turn missions remains a problem. It is desirable to develop a simple, portable sterilization device which would enable in situ cleaning and sterilization of collection devices when sampling on Mars. PlasmaSol Corporation (PlasmaSol) is a company dedicated to developing and commercializing atmospheric pressure plasma applications. The company consists of experienced physicists, chemists and engineers (see attached CVs) with an extensive expertise in plasma and plasma chemistry. We have recently developed a non-thermal atmospheric-plasma technology for cleaning and sterilizing spacecraft surfaces for NASA. We propose to configure our plasma technology for use in a Martian CO2 atmosphere. This will require: (1) the redesign and optimization of the plasma unit, (2) confirming the cleaning and kill efficiency of the unit in a Martian atmosphere. If successful, this SBIR will develop a portable, effective solution to cross contamination. More »

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This is a historic project that was completed before the creation of TechPort on October 1, 2012. Available data has been included. This record may contain less data than currently active projects.