Conductive Polymers/Elastomers as Gap Treatment Material for Aircraft

Period of Performance: 09/20/2003 - 09/20/2004


Phase 1 STTR

Recipient Firm

Physical Sciences, Inc.
Principal Investigator
Firm POC

Research Institution

University of Florida
339 Weil Hall
Gainsville, FL 32611
Institution POC


Physical Sciences, Inc. (PSI) and their research partners, Prof. John Reynolds, and the Signatures Management group at Lockheed Martin, propose to develop an advanced gap treatment material by forming conductive solid-state interpenetrating networks (SS-IPN) in a polythioether matrix using a high aspect ratio filler. The high aspect ratio filler will be composed of chopped polymer fibers with a thin metal coating. A unique, self-assembled, conductive organic coating, designed by the Reynolds group, will be applied to the fibers'''''''''''''''' metal surface to reduce contact resistance and facilitate percolation. The formation and properties of the SS-IPN in the elastomer matrix will be optimized to meet or exceed the properties outlined in the Requirements Document. PSI will work closely in the Phase II effort with the Signatures Management group at Lockheed Martin to scale-up and perform advanced testing of the SS-IPN material. There are abundant commercial applications for a low cost, highly conductive filler with high aspect ratio and elastomeric properties. Military and commercial applications include materials for static charge dissipation, electromagnetic interference shielding, and conductive adhesives all represent large markets for conductive fillers.