4D Rheo-SANS Sample Environment for Soft Matter, Biology and Materials Processing

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-SC0019595
Agency Tracking Number: 242317
Amount: $149,791.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: 17a
Solicitation Number: DE-FOA-0001940
Timeline
Solicitation Year: 2019
Award Year: 2019
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2019-02-15
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2019-11-18
Small Business Information
18 Shea Way, Suite 101, Newark, DE, 19713-3448
DUNS: 078845304
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Norman Wagner
 (302) 831-8079
 wagnernj@udel.edu
Business Contact
 Richard Dombrowski
Phone: (716) 799-5935
Email: rddombrowski@stf-technologies.com
Research Institution
 University of Delaware
 150 Academy St
Newark, DE, 19716-3196
 Nonprofit college or university
Abstract
The US scientific and industrial research communities in the broad areas of soft matter (i.e., polymers, complex fluids, nano and colloidal solutions, coatings and inks) and biological materials (i.e., drug delivery, hydrogels, tissue engineering) need, but lack, the ability to effectively study these important materials under flow conditions. Shear fields are widely used as much to process and control material nano and microstructure as well as a method to characterize such structures. The proposed 4D Rheo-SANS Sample Environment will greatly increase the US scientific measurement capability from its current level of multiple 2D measurements to being able to measure the full 3D structure with enhanced time resolution (+1D). This new instrumentation will greatly enhance the measurement capabilities at DOE funded facilities such as the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) and the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR) as well as other leading US scientific research facilities, such as the NIST Center for Neutron Research. We will address this need by developing a true Rheo-SANS instrument based on a world- leading stress controlled rheometer that meets both rheological and neutron scattering metrology requirements. The specific objective of Phase I is to develop and evaluate two minimum viable prototypes (MVPs), one based on adapting a commercial mechanical worm- gear drive and one based on a patented, but not commercially available magnetic worm gear drive that if successful, should offer enhanced capabilities. These MVPs will be evaluated for their rheological accuracy, precision, and suitability for use in a neutron scattering environment. Consultation with a leading rheology manufacturer and prior commercialization partner, TA Instruments, as well as sample environment engineers and scientists and leading US neutron scattering facilities will enable this development. Initial customers will be US neutron scattering facilities. Phase II partnership with commercialization partner TA Instruments will provide world-wide marketing, sales and support to international research facilities, greatly expanding the market. Installation of this sample environment at the two leading US neutron scattering user facilities (SNS/HFIR and NCNR) will greatly expand the US scientific measurement capability as identified as a critical need by both user facilities. Future proposed developments in Phase III and beyond to adapt the instrument to rheo-SALS will open much larger scientific instrument markets.

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

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