NASA announced on Wednesday the list of companies that will negotiate final terms for a 2010 Phase I SBIR. We’re proud to announce that one of our submissions – a “Terrestrial Plume Impingement Testbed” made the cut!
A while back we realized the potential of our rockets as what we then jokingly termed a “supersonic post hole digger” when we dug through some not quite cured concrete on a hover test before a Lunar Lander Challenge flight. It turns out there’s actually a lot of benefit to having a vertical lander land on or near samples of lunar regolith simulant / martian soil simulant. After talking to some industry experts, we decided to write a response to an SBIR to see if NASA would fund some work in that area.
We’ll write more on our work in this area as we get more work under our belts, but it’s safe to say that there is a future for Masten’s vehicles as refined “supersonic post hole diggers” in Plume Impingement research! We’re excited to get moving on the SBIR as we move forward towards flight testing Xaero!