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Cubic Boron Nitride Claddings for Friction Stir Tooling

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N68335-18-C-0377
Agency Tracking Number: N18A-026-0254
Amount: $124,999.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: N18A-T026
Solicitation Number: 2018.0
Solicitation Year: 2018
Award Year: 2018
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2018-06-04
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2018-12-04
Small Business Information
4914 Moores Mill Road
Huntsville, AL 35811
United States
DUNS: 799114574
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Daniel Butts
 (256) 851-7653
Business Contact
 Timothy McKechnie
Phone: (256) 851-7653
Research Institution
 The University of Alabama
Box 870104
Tuscoloosa, AL 35487
United States

 () -
 Nonprofit College or University

Friction stir welding (FSW) is an attractive joining method where high strength low porosity welds can be attained. However, the high temperatures and forces required for welding high strength materials like steel require the use of exotic tools. Cubic boron nitride (cBN)-based tools offer attractive tool wear characteristics in steels, but are very costly. Conversely, refractory metal alloys are moderately less expensive, but offer poorer wear properties. A potential economical solution is to apply cBN-based onto affordable metallics tools. Claddings containing cBN+binders deposited by plasma spray onto the wear surface of tools have the opportunity to reduce cBN volume thereby reducing tool cost while maintaining the wear rate of monolithic cBN-based tools. The proposed Phase I STTR will investigate plasma spray deposition of cBN-based materials. Liquid forming phases will be incorporated with cBN to avoid cBN sublimation. Thermodynamic computations by STTR partner, University of Alabama, will guide selection of these liquid forming phases. Promising deposits will be exposed to typical FSW temperatures. The University of Alabama will characterize claddings pre- and post-thermal exposures to identify phase stability. Follow-on efforts will encompass deposition trials onto a FSW tool and welding trials at the University of Alabama.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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