Lightweight innovative radiation shielding materials are needed to safeguard humans in next generation exploration. Furthermore, the energetic particles encountered in space can destroy or cause malfunctions in spacecraft electronics. The targeted application for the proposed materials that will be developed during this SBIR work is radiation shielding to shield humans in aerospace transport vehicles, large space structures such as space stations, orbiters, landers, rovers, habitats, and spacesuits. The material is expected to be multi-functional by also providing structural support while still maintaining weight requirements. The materials will also provide radiation shielding to the electronic components on board the space vehicle.
The proposed materials have potential military applications as well as commercial applications such as in the medical industry and for the nuclear energy industry. Along with NASA, potential customers include DoD and DOE as well as first responders, nuclear energy providers and medical personnel.