STTR Phase II: Novel Nanocoated Ferromagnetic Materials

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 0422220
Agency Tracking Number: 0232515
Amount: $500,000.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: STTR
Awards Year: 2004
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
11711 Chase Court, Westminster,, CO, 80020
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Buechler Karen
 (720) 840-1610
Business Contact
 Karen Buechler
Phone: (720) 840-1610
Research Institution
 U of Colorado Boulder
 Alan Weimer
 3100 Marine Street, Room 481
Boulder, CO, 80309
 (303) 492-3759
 Nonprofit college or university
This Small Business Technology Transfer Phase II project will build on the great successes of the Phase I program by proving that the nanocoating of fine ferromagnetic particles is possible on the large scale and that such nanocomposite particles have commercial uses. The Phase I program proved that atomic layer deposition (ALD) of an alumina film can provide these properties.The objectives of the Phase II program are to prove the scalability of the process as well as to work with supporting companies to develop specific products for commercial markets. A pilot scale facility will be constructed to increase the scale of production to provide the kilogram quantities of material that most partners require for product development. This facility will be optimized to provide the best quality coatings at the lowest production cost. It is anticipated that at the close of the Phase II program, the company will have developed at least one market for full scale production with 2-4 markets still being developed. The ALD nanocoating of individual ultrafine particles to control individual ultrafine particle surface chemistry is enabling technology that is unparalleled compared to more conventional CVD, PVD, PE-CVD, or wet chemistry solution processing. The process allows for individual ultra-fine particles to be nanocoated, rather than coating aggregates of ultra-fine particles. It is independent of line of sight and provides for chemically bonded films to the substrate particle surface. It is easily scalable. It is a forgiving process where the nanocoating thickness is controlled by self-limiting surface reactions (not flux, temperature, or time of processing like CVD, etc.). Films are pin-hole free and conformal. Commercially, fine iron particles are used in a variety of applications such as metal injection molding, radar absorption, localized drug delivery carriers, electronic devices etc. Most of these applications would benefit from a smaller initial iron particle size and reduced oxidation sensitivity. Thus nanocoating of ultrafine particles provides many opportunities. It is now possible to produce ultrafine particles with designed electrical, magnetic, optical, mechanical, rheological, or other properties. Markets for such functionalized ultra-fine powders include microelectronics, defense, hardmetals, cosmetics, drug delivery, energetic materials, and polymer/ceramic nanocomposites, among others.

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

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