Metal Rubber Nanostructured Materials

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-FG02-04ER84019
Agency Tracking Number: 75245S04-I
Amount: $750,000.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2005
Solicitation Year: 2004
Solicitation Topic Code: 33 d
Solicitation Number: DOE/SC-0072
Small Business Information
Nanosonic, Inc.
P.O. Box 618, Christiansburg, VA, 24068
DUNS: N/A
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Jennifer Lalli
 Dr.
 (540) 953-1785
 jlalli@nanosonic.com
Business Contact
 Linda Duncan
Title: Mrs.
Phone: (540) 953-1785
Email: lmduncan@nanosonic.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
75245S This project will develop a ¿metal rubber¿ product ¿ a highly electrically-conductive, elastomeric, and transparent nanocomposite ¿ that maintains electrical conductivity or provides EMI shielding while under mechanical, thermal, and environmental stress. The materieal can be used as lightning strike and EMI shielding protective coatings for commercial and advanced aircraft, and in state-of-the-art flexible microelectronics and sensors. During Phase I, several nanocomposites were modeled and prepared layer-by-layer by the self-assembly of metal nanoparticles and elastomeric polymers. The relationship between sheet resistance, transmission, and mechanical properties were investigated. A bulk resistivity of 10-5 O¿cm was demonstrated (recall that the resistivity of bulk gold is 10-6 O¿cm), which is important because a smaller amount of metal would be needed for manufacturing, thereby reducing costs. The tradeoff in material properties was controlled through chemical processing based on (1) the choice and volume fraction of metal nanoparticles and (2) the choice and crosslink density of the organic polymer component. In Phase II, the properties of the material will be optimized for commerical applications, especially as high performance coatings for aircraft and microelectronics packaging. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits as described by the awardee: The new ¿metal-rubber¿ material should find application as: (1) advanced window coating materials for next-generation commercial airplanes, (2) similar coatings for military aircraft transparencies, and (3) flexible conducting electrodes and mechanical sensors in the electronics market. In addition, the technology should expand the use of nanotechnology as a practical manufacturing technique.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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