Nanotube Composite Materials For Balloons and Aerobots
Innovative materials are key to buoyant vehicles for terrestrial and extraterrestrial applications in NASA's Space and Earth Science Enterprises. Thin film membranes which have resistance to UV degradation, temperature operation up to 750¿K, low helium permeability with good handling and folding characteristics at an areal density <40g/m2 and down to <12g/m2 are required. Metallized composites of nanotube reinforcement in a carbon matrix are an innovative material that has the potential to meet these material requirements. Nanotube reinforced carbon matrix composites will be developed and metallization processing demonstrated to produce ultra-lightweight membranes to fabricate vehicles for both terrestrial and extraterrestrial applications. Hybrid composite membrane materials will be delivered to NASA.
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