Lightweight Carbon Nanomaterial Sheetgood for Electromagnetic Shielding in Structural Composites

Period of Performance: 08/15/2013 - 08/15/2015

$750K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Applied Sciences, Inc.
141 W. Xenia Ave. Array
Cedarville, OH 45314
Principal Investigator

Abstract

ABSTRACT: Applied Sciences, Inc. (ASI) will develop lightweight, isotropic, continuous carbon nanofiber sheetgood (CNF Mat) featuring tailored-Z materials. This will allow military aerospace assets to survive comprehensive natural and hostile threats, including flash x-rays, nuclear electromagnetic pulse (EMP) system-generated electromagnetic pulse neutrons and other threats that face high altitude aircraft. Since virtually all military systems place a premium on low mass solutions, shielding is provided in a multi-functional material that addresses structural, process-ability and survivability requirements of the component or subsystem. Through selection of CNF type(s) and modifications of properties such as resistivity, magnetic permeability, and charge carrier mobility, ASI will produce mechanically robust, low weight, high shielding CNF Mat. CNF Mat will be incorporated into CFRP composites with existing composite fabrication methods, fully characterized, and will demonstrate high hardness per MIL-STD-2169B for crucial military needs, including for electromagnetic shielding effectiveness, EMP and flash X-Rays, neutron activation, etc. Prototypes will be fabricated. The ASI CNF Mat has attracted interest from Prime Contractors due to its low-cost and ease of processing using existing manufacturing methods/equipment. ASI will leverage this support in Phase II collaborations and through commercialization activities in concert with military contractors as well as civilian consumers of carbon nanofiber composites. BENEFIT: Carbon nanofiber mat is an emerging continuous nanomaterial product form that is attracting interest from numerous DoD Prime Contractors and in private industry for its low weight, multi-functional properties. Upon completion of the Phase I effort, a new functionality will have been developed and demonstrated in CNF Mat, enabling more applications. Current uses under investigation for CNF mat include: Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) mitigation, windmill blades, fan cases, fan blades, structural composites for aerospace applications, advanced energy, and sporting goods.