Design and Synthesis of Nanostructured Corrosion Resistance Coating for Ageing Aircraft

Period of Performance: 09/13/2001 - 09/13/2002


Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

Nanosonic, Inc.
158 Wheatland Drive Array
Pembroke, VA 24136
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Research Institution

Virginia Polytechnic Institute
Sponsored Programs 0170
Blacksburg, VA 24061
Institution POC


This STTR program would investigate the feasibility of ionic self-assembled monolayer (ISAM) synthesis techniques for the fabrication of flexible multilayer, multifunctional corrosion mitigating coatings for the protection of large area aluminum aircraft structural components. NanoSonic and our Virginia Tech STTR partner have already demonstrated that multiple properties and morphologies may be incorporated into such coatings by varying constituent nanoclusters and polymers through the thickness. Here, this would allow the combination of multiple desirable capabilities, including significant reduction in ion transport to the aluminum surface, an abrasion-resistant and water displacing topcoat, and controlled release-on-demand to permit periodic coating removal and recoating. This would build directly on related prior and current NanoSonic developments, including efforts involving the integration of multiple functionalities into nanocomposite ISAM coatings, and the conformal ISAM coating of large aircraft components. The PI and research team have directly related industrial experience in adhesive and coating development and upscaling. NanoSonic has exclusively licensed fundamental ISAM patents from Virginia Tech to enable protected technology transfer and commercialization. During Phase II, NanoSonic would work with a major U.S. aerospace contractor to demonstrate coating on large aircraft structures, and allow the direct transfer of the technology to established aircraft manufacturers and maintenance organizations.Effective molecularly self-assembled corrosion preventative coatings formed without environmentally unacceptable chromium-based inhibitors would have significant industrial use on military and commercial aircraft, marine structures, land-based vehicles, civilian infrastructure and consumer products.