NASA Langley Research Center has developed a method to create Sequential/Simultaneous Multi-Metallized Nanocomposites (S2M2N) via supercritical fluid (SCF) sequential or simultaneous multi-metal infusion. The SCF infusion process provides deep impregnation of metal nanoparticles into a variety of materials, including those with challenging topographies and complex structures. The resulting multi-metallized nanocomposites can possess high electrical conductivity, permittivity, permeability, wear resistance/anti-penetrant, and radiation shielding along with high toughness.

The technology has many applications, including for use on solar sails.

Well-dispersed metal decorated nano-tube or nanowire polymer composites have rarely been reported because of the excessive weight contrast between the decorated tubes and the polymer matrix. However, various properties, such as those mentioned above, are desirable and can be achieved with S2M2N metallized nanocomposites. Further, it is desirable to have nanocomposites that exhibit improvement in more than one of these properties, and thus be capable of performing multiple functions. This invention provides a method to decorate pre-resided nano-tube (CNT, BNNT, GPs) or nanowire surfaces in a polymer matrix with metal nanoparticles via supercritical fluid (SCF) deposition.

NASA is actively seeking licensees to commercialize this technology. Please contact The Technology Gateway at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to initiate licensing discussions. Follow here  for more information.


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This article first appeared in the December, 2017 issue of Tech Briefs Magazine.

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