Rapid Higher Pressure Combustion Driven Compaction for Near Net Shape Manufacturing of Higher Temperature Propulsion Components

Period of Performance: 05/22/2013 - 05/27/2015


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Utron Kinetics, LLC
9441 Innovation Drive
Manassas, VA -
Principal Investigator


Based on the successful Phase I results, The major objectives of the Phase II SBIR effort will be focused on further continuation and development of CDC compaction of W-25Re and other composite materials, processing optimization, fabricating test coupons and small scale throat/prototype large scale parts for the MDA/prime contractor part needs (Aerojet, Raytheon) and scientifically characterizing the materials behavior including high temperature properties and select hot-fire testing in coordination with MDA sponsors and establish cost-effective manufacturing for transition to MDA sub-systems such as SM3-BlockIIA, Block IIB applications. Proposed materials include W-25Re alloys and select composites with small % of alloying additions such as Hf, HfC, TaC, HfN in select geometrical shapes (mechanical test coupons, small scale disks and small scale throat/large scale prototype part using UTRON s innovative, cost-effective and compact Combustion Driven Powder Compaction (CDC) at high pressures (e.g., up to 150 tsi). The samples will be fabricated using commercially available fine powders as raw materials and geometries to be fabricated include 3.5 inch long tensile dogbones, disks (1-1.5 inch diameter) as well as small scale throat/large scale prototypes for potential hot-fire testing. We will develop the key CDC process optimization for various proposed materials, suitable thermal processing/sintering, geometrical and physical property (density) changes, geometry/surface/part quality, select mechanical tensile properties at room and elevated temperatures (e.g., RT to 3750-4100-4500 degF or higher in consultation with MDA sponsor and subcontractorsAerojet/SORI), microstructures and microchemistry. Based on the optimum process conditions, representative small scale hollow throat liner and other large thrust throat components will also be fabricated using a special die/punch assembly and scaling up in Phase II. Further process optimization on the most promising W-25Re alloys or the alloy composites and rapid manufacturing strategies will be established and continued in Phase II and Phase III.