Thermally Initiated Self Healing Polymer Nanocomposites

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8651-06-M-0182
Agency Tracking Number: F061-138-2235
Amount: $99,995.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2006
Solicitation Year: 2006
Solicitation Topic Code: AF06-138
Solicitation Number: 2006.1
Small Business Information
NEI CORPORATION
400 E Apgar Drive, Somerset, NJ, 08873
DUNS: 042939277
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Stein Schreiber Lee
 Senior Scientist
 (732) 868-3141
 slee@neicorporation.com
Business Contact
 Ganesh Skandan
Title: Chief Executive Officer
Phone: (732) 868-3141
Email: gskandan@neicorporation.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
To successfully achieve and maintain Air Theater Superiority over the modern battlefield the Air Force requires high performance polymer/fiber composite materials. These lightweight high strength materials have greatly advanced the capabilities of jet aircrafts, munitions, space vehicles, as well as ground support vehicles. Damage caused by small impacts during transport and handing of munitions can create unseen micro-damage within the resin matrix and at the fiber/matrix interface. These micro-cracks reduce the actual performance of the composite below the expected level for which the component was designed. Detecting micro-cracks in materials is very difficult, and accessing them to repair them is also non-trivial. Therefore, imparting the capability for composites to self-repair these micro-cracks will reduce the frequency of full part replacement, maintain the designed high performance characteristics, and eliminate the expansion of micro-cracks that can result in further weakening of the composite over time leading to catastrophic failure and loss of life. The proposed technology is based on thermally initiated self-healing. Unlike previous approaches to self-healing, the polymer nanocomposite will actively close and seal cracks and is designed as a matrix replacement in fiber reinforced polymer composites.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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