High Density Composite Small Arms Ammunition

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Army
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 28779
Amount: $68,401.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 1995
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
14 Menfi Way, Hopedale, MA, 01747
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Mark V. Parish, Ph.d.
 (508) 473-3200
Business Contact
Phone: () -
Research Institution
Lead-free, environmentally friendly ammunition will allow military training ranges to remain open. Lead was an ideal bullet material, due to its high density (11.3g/cm(3)) and formability (Tm = 327 degrees C), but is no longer acceptable due to health concerns. However, the development of high density, nontoxic ammunition rounds has been advanced by engineered polymeric resins. These resins have low densities, so fillers (powdered metals) have been incorporated into these polymeric binders. CeraNova proposes to mold ammunition using a ceramic carbide and other ceramics dispersed within polymeric resins. One ceramic carbide @ 15.7 g/cm(3), is more dense than lead (11.4g/cm(3)). A composite consisting of 63 vol% copper (8.29 g/cm(3)) and 37% polyetherimide (PEI) (1g/cm(3)) yielded a density of 6.0 g/cm(3). By replacing copper with carbides or other ceramics, at similar volume fractions, a density of 10.3g/cm(3) is possible. A 70% carbide/PEI composite will create a density of 11.3g/cm(3). Many ceramic carbides are hard, dense, inexpensive, and chemically inert. There are also many suitable polymer compositions. CeraNova will experiment upon a matrix of polymers and high density ceramics to develop low cost, high density, environmentally `green' ammunitions for .50 caliber, 7.62 mm rounds and nonmilitary applications.

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

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