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Grave to Cradle: Establishing a Domestic Capability to Recover, Reclaim, and Convert Critical Metals from Defense & Industrial Scrap

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Defense Logistics Agency
Contract: SP4701-20-C-0031
Agency Tracking Number: L2-0272
Amount: $1,479,308.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: DLA183-013
Solicitation Number: 18.3
Solicitation Year: 2018
Award Year: 2020
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2020-05-14
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2022-12-14
Small Business Information
25 Commerce Way Suite 1
North Andover, MA 01845
United States
DUNS: 080991660
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Sunil Badwe
 Chief Metallurgist
 (978) 258-1645
Business Contact
 Judy Lee
Phone: (978) 258-1645
Research Institution

There is limited domestic production of nickel superalloys, used in propulsion, turbines, heat exchangers, exposing the military to risk of overdependence on foreign sources. End-of-life parts and shop scrap represent an untapped source of superalloys that can serve as a domestic supply, provided they can be converted into material with properties meeting specs for original parts manufacturing. The program objective is to establish a secure domestic source of strategic metals for the military. Phase I demonstrated conversion of scrap into feedstock and that UniMelt™, a microwave-coupled-plasma process, successfully produces “virgin” quality superalloy powders - as compared to the industry “gold standard” – with performance confirmed by testing of 3D printed coupons. Phase II will expand scrap-for-feedstock sourcing and preparation followed by UniMelt processing into aerospace-grade powders. 3D printing of discrete prototype parts will be demonstrated and optimized to meet application requirements with DoD qualified vendors, accompanied by initial plans for qualification and commercialization. Phase II will confirm the efficacy of producing powder from domestic scrap sources, for aerospace use, with a path to program insertion. Significant end-system cost reduction will be a major benefit along with abundant secure supplies of strategic metals for use by the military and commercial aerospace  

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

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