SBIR Phase I: Improved Catalysis for Carbon Fiber Production
Small Business Information
P. O. Box 579, Cedarville, OH, 45314
AbstractThis Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project seeks make high performance vapor-grown carbon fiber (VGCF) into a commercially viable product by using improved catalysis to increase the growth yield by an order of magnitude. This material has been used to create composites with record setting thermal properties in a variety of matrix materials, while reducing weight. However, the cost of this material is high and the quantities that can be produced are far too low to allow its widespread commercial exploitation. The production rate is limited by a very low efficiency of the catalyst that nucleates fiber growth. Work under this program will improve the method of catalyst dispersion, thereby optimizing the size distribution of catalyst particles, and leading to an increased nucleation rate. Improved catalyst efficiency will result in proportionate increases in production rates and decreases in costs. Markets for VGCF reinforced composites include fields that need improved, lighter weight, thermal management systems, such as space and aviation, high power electronics, consumer electronics, and power generation. For many applications, the thermal performance of VGCF reinforced composites will be enabling. For others, it will allow passive cooling to replace active systems, thereby reducing cost and increasing reliability.
* information listed above is at the time of submission.