Durable Dust Repellent Coating for Metals
The Durable Dust Repellent Coating (DDRC) consists of nano-phase silica, titania, or other oxide coatings to repel dust in a vacuum environment over a wide range of temperatures. The coatings are engineered with dielectric properties to strongly repel particles from surfaces. Durability is attained by application methods such as sol-gel coating or physical vapor deposition onto stationary and rotating surfaces of EVA equipment, hatches and seals, lunar modules, ISRU hardware, and habitats prior to assembly. The application of the coating is followed by annealing at elevated temperatures. Initial development is planned for stainless steel, followed later by other metals and plastics. In addition to dust repellency, the DDRC provides abrasion resistance to lunar hardware. Some of the DDRC coatings also impart UV resistance to the substrate. Unlike convential dust removal methods such as brushing or blowing that may result in deep infiltration of particles, dust can be readily removed from DDRC surfaces by tilting or mild vibration.
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