SBIR Phase II: A High Strength and Durable Composite NanoWrap for Repair and Rehabilitation of Piping and Other Civil Infrastructure Systems

Period of Performance: 01/01/2012 - 12/31/2012


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Pipe Wrap LLC
15832 West Hardy Road, Suite 600
Houston, TX 77060
Principal Investigator, Firm POC


This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II project will continue the development, validation, and full-scale testing of a new patent-pending nanoparticle-reinforced composite product for the repair and rehabilitation of piping and other civil infrastructure systems. The overarching goal of the research is to develop and demonstrate a composite system that can be used to repair pipes without requiring expensive, and sometimes dangerous, cutout and repair of pipe sections, while also meeting Department of Transportation (DOT) requirements to qualify it as a permanent rather than temporary repair. In order to meet these requirements, a composite wrap system is needed with fatigue properties that are much better than current systems. Test results obtained in Phase I demonstrate that the fatigue resistance of our new nanoparticle-reinforced composite repair system outperforms traditional pipeline repair composite materials currently on the market. The specific goals of Phase II will be: 1) validation of initial results from Phase I; 2) extension of property testing to prepare for full-scale testing under American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) PCC-2 requirements; 3) design of a manufacturing machine to produce the new composite product and 4) completion of full-scale testing to prove compliance with DOT regulations. The broader impact/commercial potential of this project will be to significantly improve the safety and reduce costs for repair of DOT-regulated and industrial pipelines through the development of a high-strength, fatigue- and corrosion-resistant pipe repair system with a design life over 50 years. There were 6,042 "significant incidents" related to pipeline damage from 1988 to 2008, resulting in 427 fatalities, 1,805 injuries and property damage totaling $3.8 billion. Composite repair products currently used to prevent pipeline failures are economical, easy to apply, and can be used to repair other civil infrastructures such as bridge columns and piers. However, current composite repair systems for pipelines qualify only as a temporary repair due to their susceptibility to fatigue, and therefore require eventual replacement via cut-out. Development of a composite wrap system that qualifies as a permanent repair would have a transformational impact on the pipeline industry, placing the commercial potential of this product at $50-100 million, even with a relatively small market share. In addition, with the availability of stronger and less expensive field repairs, pipeline companies are likely to become more proactive with their composite repair programs, resulting in an overall reduction in catastrophic failures and incidents.