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SBIR/STTR

Lightweight, Cost Effective LOX Compatible Aerogel Insulation Material for Cryogenic Fluid Transfer Applications, Phase I

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

Lightweight, Cost Effective LOX Compatible Aerogel Insulation Material for Cryogenic Fluid Transfer Applications, Phase I
Energy-efficient cryogenic insulation is an imperative requirement for the future of space travel. In order to advance the space program, NASA must find cost effective solutions to store and disperse propellants at cryogenic temperatures. The true cost for an insulation material depends upon the energy tradeoff between thermal efficiency and lifecycle maintenance for an insulation system. Durability is a critical factor for insulation systems because performance can degrade over time if appropriate attention is not given to environmental exposure and thermal cycling. Aspen Aerogels proposes to develop a cost effective, low density, aerogel insulation material that is liquid oxygen compatible for terrestrial LOX and LH2 pipes and feed lines applications. Besides its exceptional thermal insulation performance, these novel aerogels are super-hydrophobic and durable, affording a superior protective layer for the pipelines against environmental corrosion. During the Phase II Program, Aspen will further optimize the material and scale-up to production levels with a focus towards long-term applicability to replace conventional cryogenic insulation material in the pipelines and expand its use in other government and commercial applications. This novel insulation will reduce cryogenic storage costs by increasing the life expectancy of the system while decreasing the cost of installation and lifecycle maintenance. More »

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