USA flag logo/image

An Official Website of the United States Government

Ultra Lightweight Metal RubberT Flight Control Sensors and Arrays

Award Information

Department of Defense
Air Force
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2008 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Nanosonic, Inc.
VA Pembroke, VA 24136-3645
View profile »
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: Yes
Phase 2
Fiscal Year: 2008
Title: Ultra Lightweight Metal RubberT Flight Control Sensors and Arrays
Agency / Branch: DOD / USAF
Contract: FA8650-08-C-3825
Award Amount: $750,000.00


ABSTRACT: This Air Force Phase II SBIR program would apply thin film Metal RubberT sensor skin arrays to the quantitative measurement of distributed flow on Micro Air Vehicle (MAV) control surface test articles. During the Phase I program, NanoSonic designed and synthesized electrically conductive, low areal mass density, and low modulus thin film transducer materials, and demonstrated their use for the calibrated measurement of skin friction through both water flow and wind tunnel tests. Metal RubberT is a self-assembled nanocomposite material containing alternate layers of specialized polymers and functionalized metal nanoclusters. Phase I research further demonstrated the ability to form two-dimensional sensor skin arrays of such materials, and to acquire, multiplex and store data from the array elements in near real-time. During the Phase II program, the mechanical and electrical transduction properties of the sensor materials would be optimized, improved data acquisition electronics would be implemented, the transduction response of modified sensor materials would be calibrated, and sensor elements and arrays would be used to analyze MAV components through water and air flow testing in industry, university and government research laboratory facilities. The Phase II program has the support of a primary manufacturer of advanced unmanned and manned air vehicle platforms. BENEFIT: Conformal, low areal mass density, and low modulus Metal RubberT skin friction sensors and sensor arrays have applications in the measurement of flow-induced shear stress on advanced wind tunnel models, and in the flight control instrumentation of MAVs and NAVs where weight and frequency response are of critical importance. Related applications include use as similar air data sensors on larger unmanned and manned aircraft and lighter-than-air vehicles, and on the control surfaces of small hydrocraft. Metal RubberT itself has applications in flexible electronics, as low weight flexible electrical interconnects for deployable RF and PV arrays, as EMI shielding for defense platforms and commercial electronic systems, and as an environmentally-friendly replacement for conventional lead-based eutectic solders."

Principal Investigator:

A. Hill
Director of Program Devel

Business Contact:

Lisa B. Lawson
Contracts Administrator
Small Business Information at Submission:

P.O. Box 618 Christiansburg, VA 24068

EIN/Tax ID: 541877635
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No