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SBIR Phase I: High Throughput Silver Nanowire Manufacturing

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 1248916
Agency Tracking Number: 1248916
Amount: $150,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: NM
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: 2012
Award Year: 2013
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2013-01-01
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2013-10-31
Small Business Information
3252 Holiday Court #115
La Jolla, CA 92037-1807
United States
DUNS: 969813278
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 David Schultz
 (858) 638-0315
Business Contact
 David Schultz
Phone: (858) 638-0315
Research Institution

This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project will develop a high throughput manufacturing process for the production of high aspect ratio silver nanowires. Electrically conductive nanowires have shown significant performance advantages in electronic devices. This is particularly evident for silver nanowires, which have been recognized as the most promising replacement for indium tin oxide in transparent conductor manufacture. Silver nanowires are also superior to silver flake filler used in conductive adhesives since continuous conducting networks can be formed at significantly lower fill volumes. A barrier to successful commercialization of silver nanowire technology for these applications is the capacity to manufacture the quantities needed for electronic markets. During the Phase I investigation, a scalable high throughput manufacturing process will be developed that can result in significant increase in production capacity. The ability to tightly control reaction conditions will result in high product quality and yield. The development of a high throughput process suitable for manufacturing silver nanowires will be revolutionary and allow for production of this material at the scale that will meet the expected requirements of the electronic industry and at an affordable price. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project is extremely large as silver nanowires represent a novel displacement technology for the manufacture of many different types of electronics devices. This nanomaterial has superior performance to other candidate materials being evaluated for indium tin oxide replacement in transparent conductors, providing a competitive advantage. The Department of Energy (DOE) listed indium as one the materials in most critical supply with regard to supply risk and importance to clean energy (Source: U.S. Department of Energy, Critical Materials Strategy, December 2010). Potential customers for silver nanowires include electronic device manufacturers for touch screen displays, flat panel or plasma displays, organic light-emitting diodes (OLED) and photovoltaic solar cells. Improved performing silver nanowire containing solar panels will enhance acceptance of this green energy alternative. Environmental concerns are also guiding the development and increased use of electrically conductive inks, pastes, paints and adhesives, which can be accomplished using silver nanowire technology, as alternatives to lead based solders. The ability to lower production costs due to high throughput manufacturing capacity and quality by the methods proposed will result in cost savings to manufacturers and distributors of silver-based conductive composites.

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

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