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Large Component, High-quality Composite Fabrication Using Nanocarbon Heating Films

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N68335-19-C-0079
Agency Tracking Number: N18B-031-0043
Amount: $124,998.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: N18B-T031
Solicitation Number: 18.B
Solicitation Year: 2018
Award Year: 2019
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2018-10-04
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2019-04-11
Small Business Information
301 1st Street SW Suite 200
Roanoke, VA 24011
United States
DUNS: 627132913
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Mr. Daniel Metrey Mr. Daniel Metrey
 Principal Investigator
 (540) 961-4509
Business Contact
 Michael Pruzan
Phone: (540) 769-8430
Research Institution
 North Carolina State University
 Sherrie Settle Sherrie Settle
Office of Sponsored Programs & Regulatory Compliance 2701 Sullivan Drive, Suite 240 (Campus Box 7514)
Raleigh, NC 27695
United States

 (919) 515-2444
 Nonprofit College or University

Autoclaves are typically used to fabricate high-quality composite components with acceptable thermal properties and low void volume. They provide elevated temperature processing cycles and external pressure required for adequate compaction to achieve these desired properties. However, autoclaves represent large capital and energy investment while limiting the size of fabricated parts and production flexibility. Advanced Out-of-Autoclave (OOA) methods are required to effectively apply heat and compact the resulting composites to meet stringent specifications of structural aerospace components. The use of heating films/blankets is an attractive option for OOA applications. A potential improvement to this process would be to use heating elements based on carbon nanotubes, such as those being developed by our partner at North Carolina State University (NCSU). As demonstrated during a previous joint Luna/NCSU Navy SBIR Phase I program, these systems have the potential to provide excellent temperature distribution across the composite while using less energy than conventional ovens/autoclave. Engineers at Luna Innovations have developed novel OOA technologies, which have demonstrated low-porosity composite fabrication using simple vacuum bag pressure for compaction. Luna will combine our OOA composite fabrication expertise along with scaled-up novel nanoheating systems at NCSU to develop efficient, OOA technology for the fabrication of large aerospace-quality composites.

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

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