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Woburn, MA, United States

Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Air Force | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 149.96K | Year: 2012

ABSTRACT: The Air Force requires an advanced corrosion resistant coating system which significantly mitigates the destructive effect of oxygen, for military aerospace and infrastructure preservation applications. The proposed program will develop an advanced multifunctional hybrid corrosion resistant coating system by uniformly embedding self-healing nanoparticles into a superhydrophobic perfluoroalkylated phthalocyanine (PPC) based fluorinated polymer system. The proposed new corrosion resistant coating system is expected to exhibit extremely low energy surface, surface self-cleaning feature by photo-generated singlet oxygen, no electron loss by encapsulated metal regulation, minimal oxidative destruction due to less hydrocarbon bonding, self-healing functionality by incorporation of corrosion inhibitor loaded nanocontainers, long-term active corrosion resistance by robust coating component, and high film durability by incorporated temperature stable polymer. This advanced coating system will also provide improved insulation film formability and enhanced thermal stability and processability due to the proven polyurethane polymer system. The key innovation in this approach is the unique design and synthesis of superhydrophobic main anticorrosion coating resin, which is fluorinated polymer prepared by covalently bonding of PPC groups to the backbone of fluorinated polyurethane polymer, and the incorporation of self-healing mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs). The proposed advanced corrosion resistant coating system can be economically scaled up for volume manufacture. BENEFIT: The proposed high performance multifunctional hybrid corrosion resistant coating system will provide significantly increased corrosion resistance property and the lifetime of military aircrafts, thereby significantly reducing corrosion related operation and maintenance costs. The proposed corrosion resistant coating system can be applied to other military helicopter and rotorcraft, aircraft carriers, warships, armored vehicles, other land vehicles, and engineered structures where similar performance is needed. Also, the ability to form superhydrophobic coatings surfaces will have a huge effect on commercial applications such as anti-corrosion, antifouling, commercial marine structures/vessels, and automotive, commercial aircraft and vehicles, civilian infrastructure, and other consumer applications.

Agency: Department of Homeland Security | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 149.98K | Year: 2011

Scintillators have been used in radiation detection applications including medical imaging, oil well drilling, and high energy physics experiments. The new security need for scintillators has changed the market dynamics from specialty niche to volume production. In this program, Nanotrons proposes a manufacturing method that potentially produces scintillator of very large size and high crystal quality at unprecedentedly low cost to meet the new demand. Our process is a novel simple process that grows large-size single crystal ingots by continuous solidification from a seed crystal without any moving parts. Due to the simplicity, the proposed process has salient advantages of large size and low cost. Without movements, the new process also prevents secondary nucleation and ensuring very low strain in the grown crystal. Phase I will demonstrate the feasibility.

Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 599.93K | Year: 2011

In order to meet NASA's vision to develop sustainable and affordable solar system exploration strategies, NASA seeks advanced high-strength and high-toughness composite materials with the microcrack resistance at cryogenic temperatures. These materials must be suitable for use in fuel containment of liquid oxygen, hydrogen, and methane. The objective of this SBIR project is to develop advanced high microcrack-resistant composite cryotanks. In Phase I we successfully demonstrated the synthesis of functionalized graphene sheet (FGS) nanofillers in large scale, which exhibited significantly increased resin strength and toughness at both room and low temperatures, and reduced coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE). The further investigation of nanocomposite formulation and composite processing can result in FGS-polymer nanocomposite based carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) composites with significantly enhanced microcrack resistance at cryogenic temperatures in ways it has never done before. The new nanocomposite based CFRP composite materials also provide additional advantages in forming an impermeable barrier to gas and liquid molecules ideal for fuel tanks. Nanotrons' proposed new multifunctional nanocomposite based CFRP composite cryotanks will replace the currently used aluminum-lithium cryotanks providing significant weight savings and can be economically manufactured.

Agency: National Science Foundation | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 149.95K | Year: 2010

This Small Business Innovation Research Phase I project will develop a new category of high energy density nanocomposite dielectric materials for use in high pulse power capacitors. The approach is to bring together 3 nanostructures in a polypropylene matrix to form a novel nanocomposite material with high effective dielectric constant, high breakdown voltage, and low dissipation factor. These high-performance nanocomposite dielectric materials may be used in many commercial high-power pulse, fast pulse, and high-energy density capacitors, resulting in reduced size, reduced weight, and improved circuit design. The commercial opportunities include high density electronic devices and packaging for medical, communication, transportation, and power distribution systems, in products such as defibrillators, medical and commercial lasers, pulse forming networks, A.C. motors, ultrasonic transducer exciter, strobe lighting, and acceleration and energy recovery systems of automobiles.

Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 999.96K | Year: 2010

The need for pure water is a global challenge that encompasses manufacturing, home consumption and desalination. Current filtration technologies that are used to purify water are too energy intensive.Nanotrons proposes an innovative carbon nanotube based water filtration membrane technology that will drastically outperform all the conventional filtration membranes. This new category of carbon nanotubeenabled filtration membrane provides drastically increased purification flux output, resulting in substantial reduction in filter size and operation energy consumption. In Phase I, we have successfully demonstrated the feasibility of our solution-based fabrication technology for producing the carbon nanotube based filtration membranes. The success achieved during Phase I has paved the way for practical fabrication of this breakthrough water filtration membrane.In Phase II, we will test a feasible roll-to-roll mass production methodology for the filtration membranes, work with leading water filter producers such as Pall and Millipore to develop a prototype filtration cartridge, and evaluate its performance. At the end of the project, a prototype filtration cartridge with excellent performance will be demonstrated. The success of this Phase II will lay the foundation for the Phase III commercialization. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: Success of this Phase II effort will pave the road for mass production and commercialization of these high performance carbon nanotube based filtration membranes through a roll-to-roll manufacture line. The adoption of this novel ultra-high flux carbon nanotube based filtration membrane will have profound impact on dozens of multi-billion industries, including water purification, medical, chemical, pharmaceuticals, food processing, and environmental remediation. Rapid growth of emerging opportunities will also result from successful development, such as miniaturized portable filtration/desalination devices for use by ships, aircraft and spacecraft crews and passengers, soldiers, recreational hikers and explorers.

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