Affordable Practical High-Efficiency Photovoltaic Concentrator Blanket Assembly for Ultra-Lightweight Solar Arrays

Period of Performance: 01/01/2012 - 12/31/2012


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Deployable Space Systems, Inc.
460 Ward Drive, Suite F
Santa Barbara, CA 93111
Principal Investigator, Firm POC


Deployable Space Systems, Inc. (DSS) will focus the proposed NASA Phase 2 effort on the development and TRL 5/6 maturation of our innovative Functional Advanced Concentrator Technology (FACT) for standard multi-junction and advanced IMM photovoltaics. FACT is a highly-affordable, practical, high-efficiency, ultra-lightweight photovoltaic concentrator blanket assembly that can be rolled or z-folded in a stowed configuration. FACT coupled to an ultra-lightweight solar array structural platform will provide game-changing performance metrics and unparalleled affordability. FACT will enable emerging SEP Space Science and Exploration missions through its ultra-affordability, ultra-lightweight, ultra-compact stowage volume, and practical/user-friendly off-pointing versus power characteristics. The FACT technology promises to provide NASA/industry a near-term and low-risk flexible blanket technology for advanced solar array systems. The FACT technology provides revolutionary performance in terms of: High specific power (>260W/kg BOL with ZTJ/XTJ and ~400W/kg BOL with IMM PV when coupled to ROSA-array); Affordability (>40% cost savings when coupled to ROSA-array); Flexible blanket compatibility / architecture flexibility (accommodates rolled or z-folded blankets); User-friendly off-pointing versus power characteristics; Compact stowage volume (>50kW/m3); High deployment reliability; High radiation tolerance and high voltage operation capability; Applicability/scalability to many missions (500W-1MW+ sizes); LILT/HIHT operation capability; and Adaptable to standard rigid honeycomb panel arrays.