Technology developed during this SBIR program will be directly applied to any NASA telescope program involved with exoplanet discovery and characterization that needs an external occulter, or Starshade. More broadly, technology will be developed that will allow high coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) structures to be simply and cost effectively joined to low CTE structures with low interface forces and minimal impact on structural precision.
During this SBIR, technology will be developed that will allow two structures with different expansion rates to be simply and cost effectively joined with low interface forces and minimal impact on structural precision. These interfaces are quite common on typical satellite assemblies. Some examples include radiator panels to carbon/epoxy support frame, solar array panels or blankets to external support frame or even at a more micro level can be between an integrated solar cell and a supporting substrate.