Minnovate Awarded R&D Contract for Space Applications — Press Release

by: Matthew Potter
November 5, 2012

Category: Business Line, Companies, development program, Events, Press Releases, S&T, Satellites | RSS 2.0

St. Paul, Minnesota: 11/02/2012 – Minnesota Wire’s R&D division, Minnovate, was notified this week that it was awarded a research and development contract from the U.S. Air Force. The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II contract is for continued R&D work in the area of “Nanomaterials for Lightweight Spacecraft Power Distribution and Data Transmission.” The effort is focused on developing lightweight electrical interconnects for aerospace applications. The Minnovate team leads the industry in the use of lightweight carbon nanotube materials (CNT), and has several ongoing projects with government and corporate partners that are re-defining the nature of advanced electrical conductors and shields.

The Air Force Phase II SBIR will focus on using Minnovate’s unique expertise in fabricating novel data and power transmission concepts for replacement of conventional copper-based components in space vehicles. Key advantages of the resultant weight reduction are energy savings, enabling considerable reduction in launch costs, and opportunity for increased mission-critical payload. The 24 month contract award for $750,000 commences in early 2013, and will be coordinated with the Air Force Research Lab at Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico.

According to Minnesota Wire’s R&D Manager, Tom Kukowski: “The overall goal of this effort is to advance the technology to the point where CNT cables can be fielded regularly on any aerospace platform. We are honored that the Air Force and other agencies continue to value our work.”

The Minnovate Team at Minnesota Wire has a greater than 80% capture rate on federal R&D contract proposals (compared to a 10% national average), is the winner of the prestigious Tibbetts Award for SBIR excellence (2007) and received the Wire & Cable Technology International Technical Achievement Award for 2010.

Minnesota Wire is a vertically integrated, custom manufacturer for wire, cable and interconnect assemblies to the Medical, Defense and Industrial markets. The company is a market and R&D leader in: electrical signal integrity; low noise cable; radio-translucent wire; and innovative connections for wearable electronics, patient monitoring systems and leading-edge medical devices.

Photo courtesy of Minnovate

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