SBIR Phase I: Advanced Polymer Matrix Composites Based on Nanofiber Fused Microfiber Architecture

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 0740583
Agency Tracking Number: 0740583
Amount: $99,995.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2008
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: AM
Solicitation Number: NSF 07-551
Small Business Information
91 Westpark Road, Centerville, OH, 45459
DUNS: 119128051
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Jason Lincoln
 (937) 298-3713
Business Contact
 Jason Lincoln
Title: PhD
Phone: (937) 298-3713
Research Institution
The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project will develop and characterize a novel class of polymer matrix composite materials using the continuous NanoFiber Fused- Microfiber (Nf2-M) reinforcement technology developed by the company. In this patent pending process, carbon nanofibers are grown in a continuous process directly from the surface of continuous filaments (introduced in tow form) in a continuous, scaleable process. Unlike traditional approaches which involve difficult mixing operations to introduce carbon nanofibers into the matrix resin at very low loading levels and with questionable dispersion, the above approach produces continuous three-dimensional reinforcements which are easily incorporated into composites using standard fabrication techniques, including filament winding and prepreg wet lay-up processes. No additional or modified composite fabrication steps are needed. For initial demonstration of the advanced composite microstructure methodology, Nf2-M reinforcing fibers will be used to fabricate aerospace grade epoxy composites and physical, mechanical, electrical, and thermal properties will be measured. The scientific, economic, and societal impacts of the proposed research are threefold: (i) providing a foundation for a new technology in materials science research; (ii) utilizing these fundamental findings to develop and engineer enabling materials to meet growing needs in industry for current and future applications; and (iii) providing a low cost, commercially available, high performance carbon fiber reinforcement technology that has the potential to change the face of the composite materials industry. Global market forecast for reinforcing carbon fibers is ~$12.2 billion annually by 2011, and the novel approach proposed in this research can take advantage of the multitude of existing markets. Sporting goods, electronics, consumer products, aerospace, and automotive industries are all target markets of the proposed materials technology.

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

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