Reactive Materials with Reduced Electrostatic Discharge Sensitivity
Advanced reactive materials with reduced electrostatic discharge (ESD) sensitivity are needed by the Army. Nanoscale thermite compositions are of interest because of their fast reaction rates and high flame temperatures. Unfortunately, in many cases, the materials are so reactive that they are impractical to work with. One route to improving ESD insensitivity is to embed the nanoparticles in a polymeric matrix, which insulates the particles from accidental discharge. However, significant challenges exist with traditional polymeric nanocomposite processing in achieving size similar particles with uniform dispersion and avoiding agglomeration, while making material in large enough quantity to be commercially useful. These challenges only increase with larger batch sizes, making production scale-up another significant challenge. In Phase I, Cornerstone Research Group Inc. (CRG) developed polymeric nanothermite composites using a novel, patented process called nanoinfusion yielding monodisperse nanoparticles of aluminum and iron oxide in an inert polymer binder. There is no route for particle agglomeration in this process, eliminating the most significant challenge associated with nanoparticle synthesis and mixing. In Phase II, CRG proposes to scale up processing to kilogram-level production batches, optimize particles for cost, purity, and yield, and establish safety protocols for manufacturing, storage, and transportation of nanoinfused energetic materials.
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Cornerstone Research Group, Inc.
2750 Indian Ripple Road Dayton, OH -
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