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Ultra High Surface Area Aluminum Nanocomposite Powder for Solid Fuel Propellants

Award Information

Department of Defense
Missile Defense Agency
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
1997 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
10960 N Stallard Place Tucson, AZ 85737-9527
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 2
Fiscal Year: 1997
Title: Ultra High Surface Area Aluminum Nanocomposite Powder for Solid Fuel Propellants
Agency / Branch: DOD / MDA
Contract: N/A
Award Amount: $600,000.00


Advanced fuels and oxidizers, based on innovative nanotechnology prod cts and techniques are expected to supplant traditional solid and hybrid fuels, including aluminized fuels, commonly used in rocket propellant formulations. The aluminum metal is a stable low cost fuel that increases specific impulse and burn stability, but also introduces several undesirable effects primarily attributable to molten particle agglomeration and the formation of the reaction limiting Al2O3 on the particle surface. These effects limit the oxidation reaction rate and utilization efficiency of the aluminum powder. In this work an innovative nanocomposite aluminum powder with ultra-high surface area will be developed that has the potential for extremely high reaction rates, full utilization of the aluminum material and the future potential for an integrated fuel/oxidizer system. A patented ultra high speed nanotechnology vacuum process will be used to produce a material that is composed of thousands of aluminum nanolayers separated by polymer nanolayers. A nanocomposite aluminum particle can have hundreds of very thin aluminum layers, resulting in a very high surface to volume ratio; expected to increase reaction rate, powder oxidation efficiency, reduce nozzle erosion, and produce an environmentally cleaner exhaust. In Phase I, a few select nanocomposites will be produced and thermochemically characterized.

Principal Investigator:

Angelo Yializis

Business Contact:

Small Business Information at Submission:

Sigma Laboratories, Inc.
10960 N. Stallard Place Tucson, AZ 85737

EIN/Tax ID: 860700419
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No