High-Pressure Composite Escape Hatch with Corrosion-Resistant, Novel Securement Methods

Period of Performance: 07/13/2010 - 01/13/2011


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Kazak Composites, Inc.
Woburn, MA 01801
Principal Investigator


KaZaK, working with a team of submarine system partners, will develop an innovative 25-inch diameter watertight hatch offering dual-sided sealment via a novel, composite-material mechanism requiring no lubricant. KaZaK will pursue this next generation system by focusing effort on three primary tasks: development of a flexible composite closure system that departs entirely from the current watertight hatch paradigm; design of a round composite hatch structure; and integration of an embedded hinge assembly for attachment to the submersible s hull. KaZaK will pursue this deep-water hatch system via application of advanced fiber-reinforced composites along with appropriate use of metal/composite hybridization. Composite materials offer enormous flexibility in constituency, allowing precise tailoring to mechanical, electrical, fire and chemical performance requirements. The design will be optimized to allow production of watertight hatches at competitively low acquisition as well as total ownership costs. KaZaK has considerable experience in novel quick-acting watertight composite closures and has previously demonstrated a prototype weight reduction of 67% over comparable Navy metal hatch design for DDG 51. This experience, combined with KaZaK s proven manufacturing and SBIR commercialization success, provides an opportunity to perform a minimum risk program leading to procurement of a superior submarine hatch system.