Ultra Sharp Fiber Architectures for Ceramic Composites

Period of Performance: 01/01/2014 - 12/31/2014


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Materials & Electrochemical Research
7960 South Kolb Road
Tucson, AZ 85756
Principal Investigator


Hypersonic vehicles are strategic weapon systems in the Navy arena. Hypersonic vehicles require erosion-free sharp leading edges with a 0.04 inch radius which must exhibit 30 minute operation at 4500?F (2482?C). It has not been demonstrated to 3D weave fibers into a sharp leading edge architecture of 0.04 inch radius, nor prevent erosion of a leading edge at hypersonic flight conditions for 30 minutes at 4500?F (2482?C). In a partnership with TEAM, Inc., a textile engineering and manufacturing organization who has a weaving approach that can achieve the 0.04 inch radius with graphite fibers which MER will apply a refractory metal carbide eutectic as a matrix and coating on the surface which has demonstrated oxidation and erosion resistance at 2600?C (4712?F). Net shape 3D woven sub-element leading edge sections with a 0.04 inch radius will be produced with the ceramic matrix and coating that has demonstrated 30 minute operation at 4500?F (2482?C) in previously produced test specimens. Samples and a sub-element will be delivered to the Navy that will transition into the Option and Phase II to produce larger wing shapes.