Advance High Strength Low Weight Aluminum NanoFoam Alloys

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Contract: W31P4Q-09-C-0342
Agency Tracking Number: 08SB2-0168
Amount: $98,999.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2009
Solicitation Year: 2008
Solicitation Topic Code: SB082-007
Solicitation Number: 2008.2
Small Business Information
Powdermet Inc.
24112 Rockwell drive, Euclid, OH, 44117
DUNS: 175863463
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Brian Doud
 Engineering Manager
 (216) 404-0053
Business Contact
 Andrew Sherman
Title: President/CEO
Phone: (216) 404-0053
Research Institution
This Phase I SBIR program will demonstrate SiC nano-balloon-reinforced aluminum alloy composites which have strength-density ratios 20-50% greater than Al-Li alloys. The core innovation is the production of high strength SiC nanoballoons using electrospinning of Si modified polymer nanoballoons and pyrolysis, and then using these lightweight, high strength spheres as reinforcements in aluminum alloys to both reduce weight and thermal conductivity, while simultaneously increasing strength and stiffness. A second key innovation is to add up to 5% lithium solid solution to reduce the density of aluminum, which, when combined with the 0.3-0.5g/cc Sic microballoons, will create an alloy with a density less then 1.5g/cc and strengths approaching 100ksi. The production of lightweight nanosphere analogs to carbon nanotubes represents a breakthrough to the production of low density, low thermal conductivity metal products which can be economically fabricated using powder extrusion or powder forging techniques. A nano-SiC balloon will have lower density than Li with 3X the stiffness and strength, and can be added at loadings of 20-40V%. Lithium can be added at levels up to 5 wt% (15V%), meaning that through the combined addition of lithium and SiC microballoons, 50V% of the alloy can be replaced with low density (<0.5g/cc) materials.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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