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Robust, Low Permeability, Water-Filled Microcapsules

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N68335-19-C-0748
Agency Tracking Number: N19B-030-0071
Amount: $139,625.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: N19B-T030
Solicitation Number: 19.B
Solicitation Year: 2019
Award Year: 2019
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2019-08-26
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2020-02-28
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
 Tyler Farnsworth
 Principal Investigator
 (540) 557-5895
Business Contact
 Michael Pruzan
Phone: (540) 769-8430
Research Institution
 The Southwest Research Institute (SwRI)
 Mr. W. Troy Nagy Mr. W. Troy Nagy
6220 Culebra Road
San Antonio, TX 78238
United States

 (210) 522-2230
 Domestic Nonprofit Research Organization

The Navy is actively developing a self-sealing, water-activated fuel bladder to mitigate fuel leaks upon mechanical shock (e.g. penetration by a .50 caliber bullet). To circumvent the requirement of an external water source to activate the self-sealing, this system will require water-filled microcapsules that can be incorporated directly into the polymeric matrix of the fuel bladder. Upon mechanical shock, the capsules will rupture and release water to initiate the self-sealing mechanism; however, currently available water-filled microcapsules can contain water only for days to weeks before the water permeates the microcapsule shell. There is a need to develop robust water-filled microcapsules that exhibit low to zero water permeability for 20 years, thermal stability from -40°F to 135°F, and mechanical robustness to prevent premature rupture of the capsules during processing in viscous pre-polymer liquids. Scientists at Luna Innovations, in partnership with the Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), have developed an encapsulation approach that will provide excellent water barrier properties, mechanical durability, and monodisperse size control. This technology will enable the development of robust, thermally stable, and water-impermeable microcapsules that meet the stringent requirements of the Navy.

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

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