RF Material Property Characterization

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Missile Defense Agency
Contract: HQ0147-13-C-7376
Agency Tracking Number: B122-011-0373
Amount: $99,998.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2013
Solicitation Year: 2012
Solicitation Topic Code: MDA12-011
Solicitation Number: 2012.2
Small Business Information
9063 Bee Caves Road, Austin, TX, -
DUNS: 625120902
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Russell Austin
 Principal Investigator
 (512) 263-2101
 raustin@tri-austin.com
Business Contact
 Monte Fellingham
Title: Contracts Administrator
Phone: (512) 263-2101
Email: mfellingham@tri-austin.com
Research Institution
 Stub
Abstract
The research team proposes to expand the capabilities of an existing microwave nondestructive evaluation (NDE) system that measures thickness, quantifies dielectric properties (e.g. loss tangent, phase shift, dielectric constant, conductivity), and detects flaws in composite materials. The prototype system has been successfully used on military aircraft sandwich and single layer composite structures in the field. Proposed improvements will allow it to measure thickness and dielectric properties of each individual layer of material while maintaining its ability to detect very small (0.25"diameter, 0.008"thick) flaws. The existing system provides this level of flaw detection, but provides thickness and dielectric properties of the bulk composite. Preliminary results using the new approach show successful measurement of dielectric properties and thicknesses of each individual layer in stacks up to 7 layers. The system requires only inputs of measured NDE data. No base dielectric properties nor target thicknesses need be entered before calculating the answers. The existing equipment is portable (<5 lbs), low power, and allows data mapping and storage. Phase I will use multilayer samples up to 1"thick to demonstrate accurate, quantitative dielectric property and thickness measurement of every individual layer in a composite stack while also detecting small defects.

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

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