Catalytic Conversion Recycling Process for Composite Aircraft Components

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 32760
Amount: $749,969.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 1998
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
9621 Camino del Sol NE, Albuquerque, NM, 87111
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Ronald E. Allred
 (505) 298-8662
Business Contact
Phone: () -
Research Institution
Cured aircraft composite materials present a particularly difficult challenge for recycling technology. Those materials have mostly thermosetting epoxy matrices and occur in intimate association with metals, paints, and coatings. Current techniques for recycling thermoset composites, mostly for automotive sheet molding compounds (SMC), involve pulverizing the material for use as fillers. That approach does not reclaim the value from aircraft reinforcing fibers and may not be feasible for the skin-core constructions used in aircraft structures. The proposed Phase I program examines the applicability of a novel low- temperature, catalytic conversion recycling process for composite aircraft components. This process has been shown to work with complex mixtures such as tires and circuit boards. All polymeric materials (composite matrices, adhesives, paints, coatings) are converted to a valuable mixture of low molecular weight hydrocarbons and removed from the fibers, metals, and pigments that can then be reclaimed for reuse.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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