Melt Extrudable Nanocomposite Liquid Crystal Polymer Films

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Army
Contract: W911QY-11-P-0166
Agency Tracking Number: A103-162-0008
Amount: $69,993.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2011
Solicitation Year: 2010
Solicitation Topic Code: A10-162
Solicitation Number: 2010.3
Small Business Information
1300 West Koenig Lane, Suite 230, Austin, TX, -
DUNS: 033171534
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 David Irvin
 Principal Chemist
 (512) 757-5441
Business Contact
 Alan Bray
Title: Principal Scientist
Phone: (512) 535-7791
Research Institution
Systems and Materials Research Company"s (SMRC"s) liquid crystalline polymer (LCP)-aluminosilicate nanocomposite films are the proposed replacement for the pin-holing and stress cracking foil layer in the Army"s Meals Ready-to-Eat. To replace the foil lined pouches, LCPs need two things: lower cost processing and better barrier properties. By processing the LCPs as nanocomposites, both are obtainable. Nanocomposites using natural aluminosilicate clays are used to increase the barrier and tensile properties in a variety of systems. The nanoclay plates act as non-melting smectic regions that are aligned with shear. These nanomaterials have also been found to increase the rate of crystallization of LCP by acting as nucleation sites. We will use the improved processing of LCP/ clay nanocomposites (LCP/NC) to produce uniaxial and biaxial thermally extruded sheet to produce single layer barrier films. Laminates of uniaxial films will be produced to emulate co-rotating die extrusion. Additional laminates will be produced to aid in heat sealing. We will produce 1-5 layer pouches that can be heat sealed using current commercial food packaging equipment. All films and laminates will be externally tested for oxygen and water permeation by MOCON.

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

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