What is the Space Alliance Technology Outreach Program (SATOP)?
The Space Alliance Technology Outreach Program provides a unique and revolutionary service to Texas small businesses by providing them with FREE engineering support from some of the most highly qualified engineers in the world, rocket scientists. SATOP is administered by the Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership and has assembled a unique network of engineers and scientists from the NASA Johnson Space Center, local aerospace contractors, colleges and universities. SATOP is designed to help companies overcome technical hurdles that occur in the development process for new or existing products.

    Who is eligible to receive SATOPís assistance?
  • Small businesses (less than 500 employees) located in the state of Texas
  • Businesses must have a business license or Doing Business As
  • The request must have a distinct and identifiable technical problem
  • The technical problem must appear to be solvable in the 40-hour time allotment.
  • The requesting company must have a patent, provisional patent, prototype or specific drawings for the product to be worked on.
  • SATOP does not work on software or information technology related challenges.
  • SATOP does not perform testing, provide funding or do CAD drawings.

SATOPís Expertise at a Glance
Statistical Analysis

Success Stories
Here are a few examples of companies SATOP has assisted.

Tyrell Inc., a start up medical technology company needed an improved heating element for a newly developed product that treats individual acne blemishes. Through SATOP, Tyrell gained access to The Boeing Companyís engineering expertise that provided a heating element design that met their requirements for resistance to oil and acids, low power consumption and low cost to produce, at less than $1 per unit. Through the use of SATOPís recommendation, Tyrell was able to reduce their manufacturing cost by 40 percent. The product received FDA approval and is utilized in dermatologistís offices worldwide and is sold in Walgreens stores across the country. Tyrell went from $0 in sales before SATOPís assistance to over $3,000,000 a month. In 2005 ZENO was chosen by ďPopular Science MagazineĒ to receive the ďBest of Whatís NewĒ award.
Mission Technologies:
Mission Technologies, Inc. is a small business developing a compact unmanned aerial vehicle system for the U.S. Army. The company needed help in reducing the productís overall weight in order to meet the Armyís requirements. Engineers at NASA Johnson Space Center provided design modifications that reduced the weight of the launcher from 37 to less than10 pounds, thereby meeting the specified weight requirements. Because of SATOPís assistance Mission Technologies successfully delivered 36 UAVs to the Army.
Industrial Innovations:
James Carmouche of Industrial Innovations came to SATOP for help with a structural analysis of a revolutionary tool he developed for removing telephone poles from the ground. His new tool named the Master Extractor is able to remove telephone poles much more rapidly than traditional extraction methods. A SATOP engineer looked at Carmoucheís drawings and the materials it was made out of and provided him recommendations regarding where the tool would need to be further reinforced due to the extremely high loads being applied to it. Carmouche is now successfully marketing the tool to a wide array of customers.

For more information about how SATOP can help your business please contact:
Bob Payne, TX SATOP Director
Phone: 832-536-3255
Payne @ spacetechsolutions.com
Submit a Request for Technical assistance
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