Rifling of the Inner Diameter of Ceramic Tubes for Gun Barrel Applications
Department of Defense
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MATERIALS PROCESSING, INC.
6201 East Oltorf St., Suite 100, Austin, TX, 78741
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractSilicon nitride based materials have extremely attractive property combination and is ideally suited for gun barrel applications (increased life and reduced weight). In spite of the attractive properties, its use in gun barrels have been limited due to the inability of current processing techniques to introduce rifling on the inner diameter of a silicon nitride tube of moderate length (100 mm or more) in a cost effective manner. The current project proposes a novel processing scheme that combines the attributes of silicon nitride and the complex shape forming ability of powder injection molding (PIM) to offer a technology that will produce ceramic gun barrels with the desired uniform rifling twist on the inner surface of the silicon nitride tube. Future work will develop an affordable technique for the fabrication of these gun barrels. The success in Phase I will result in a generic technology that will allow the affordable fabrication of complex shaped parts from lightweight, high strength, high toughness, wear and abrasion resistant, and high temperature resistant silicon nitride that will have numerous applications in both defense and commercial sector. The success will provide DoD with the technology to finally realize the elusive goal of manufacturing ceramic gun barrels.
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