Materials & Coatings

Access our comprehensive library of technical briefs on materials and coatings, from engineering experts at NASA and government, university, and commercial laboratories.

Briefs: Materials

A program of research and development is addressing the feasibility of using magnetoplasmadynamic (MPD) sources in the chemical vapor deposition (CVD) of synthetic diamond films. Because of...

Briefs: Materials
Oxygen Batteries Based on a Solid Polymer Electrolyte

Scientists have developed a derivative of the lithium-ion cell that could prove useful in spaceflight and commercial applications in which it is planned to use oxygen batteries based on solid polymer electrolytes. This derivative cell, which contains a solid polymer electrolyte and an oxygen...

Briefs: Materials

Polyimide-matrix/carbon-fiber composite materials with enhanced thermo-oxidative stability can be made from carbon fibers that have been coated with suitably formulated reactive...

Briefs: Materials
Enhanced Shield Against Meteoroids and Orbital Debris

NASA scientists, who are very concerned with the increasing hazard of impacts of orbital debris impact on spacecraft, have designed the "stuffed Whipple" shield — a lightweight, relatively inexpensive alternative to simple aluminum meteoroid/orbital-debris (M/OD) shield. The stuffed Whipple...

Briefs: Materials

Improved zinc anodes for silver/zinc and nickel/zinc rechargeable electrochemical cells have been invented. This invention will increase the usefulness and decrease cycle-life costs of...

Briefs: Materials
Tape-Spring Reinforcements for Inflatable Structural Tubes

Lightweight, inflatable tubular structural components containing tape-spring reinforcements are undergoing development. The basic (without tape-spring reinforcement) tubular components are made, variously, of aluminum laminates or composite materials and are under consideration for use...

Briefs: Materials
Update on a Progressive-Failure-Analysis Software System

A report presents additional information on the GENOA-PFA computer program, which was described in "Software for Simulating Progressive Fracture in Braided PMCs" (LEW-16845), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 24, No. 3 (March 2000), page 52. On the basis of material-property data, finite-element...

Briefs: Materials

Ceramics Analysis and Reliability Evaluation of Structures/Creep (CARES/CREEP) is a computer program that predicts the creep lives of ceramic structural components. [CARES/CREEP should not...

Briefs: Materials
Carbon Nanotubes as Anodes in Rechargeable Lithium-Ion Cells

Carbon nanotubes (also known as "bucky tubes") have shown promise for use as anode materials in rechargeable lithium-ion power cells. In comparison with graphite and other forms of carbon used under identical conditions, bucky tubes exhibit greater specific discharge capacity and...

Briefs: Materials

A number of matrix resins that contain thermosetting plasticizers have been developed for use in the resin-transfer molding (RTM) of composite-material (fiber/matrix) parts. These...

Briefs: Materials

Investigators at the Johnson Space Center White Sands Test Facility (WSTF) have developed specifications of the amounts of alloying elements needed to increase the specific strengths of nickel alloys...

Briefs: Materials
Aerogels With Gradients of Density

Aerogels with gradients in density have been produced in experiments, as part of an effort to develop materials that will be used in outer space to capture particles traveling at high speeds for the STARDUST mission.

Briefs: Materials
Improved Fabrication of YBa2Cu3O7 —x Superconductors

An improved method of manufacturing high-temperature superconductors of general composition YBa2Cu3O7— x and various grain structures has been devised. This method involves mixing, pressing, and heating of Y2O3, CuO, and...

Briefs: Materials

Several materials have shown promise for coating graphite susceptors used in epitaxial growth of 4H-SiC. The development of appropriate susceptor-coating materials is an essential part of...

Briefs: Materials
Priming Ceramic Materials for Better Waterproofing

An improved process for waterproofing ceramic materials — especially lightweight ceramic insulation materials in both rigid (tile) and flexible (blanket) form — has been invented. In this process, traditional waterproofing agents are used, but before the waterproofing agents are applied, the...

Briefs: Materials
Reaction-Forming Method for Joining SiC-Based Parts

Two reports present additional details about the method described in "Reaction-Forming Method for Joining SiC-Based Ceramic Parts" (LEW-16661), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 23, No. 3 (March 1999), page 50. To recapitulate: A carbonaceous mixture (typically a paste) is applied to a joint between...

Briefs: Materials

TRiangular Unstructured Mesh generator by Point insEr Tion (TRUMPET) is a computer program that generates meshes that are composed of triangular cells and are bounded by complex...

Briefs: Materials

A method of analyzing and designing laminated composite-material wraps for columns, arches, domes, and other large reinforced-concrete structures involves an extension of...

Briefs: Materials
Software for Predicting Life of Metal-Matrix Composites

LIPS (LIFE PREDICTION SOFTWARE) is a computer program for predicting the life of an object that is made of a unidirectional-fiber/metal-matrix composite (MMC) material and that is subjected to mechanical loading along the fiber direction. The program is derived from a theory formulated to...

Briefs: Materials
Molecular-Sieve Type 3Å

The term "Molecular-Sieve Type 3Å" denotes a clay-based, zeolite material that revolutionizes a fluid-purification process by removing trace water and iron from nitrogen tetroxide/nitric oxide (MON-3) mixtures used as oxidizer components of spacecraft propellants. Older processes of this type removed only water or iron...

Briefs: Materials
Composite Graphite Anodes Containing Cyclic Ether Additives

Scientists have developed a type of composite graphite anode that will benefit the U.S. space program and private industry by increasing the rechargeability of lithium-ion batteries. Rechargeable lithium-ion batteries, which are used on the space shuttle and Space Station, are also used...

Briefs: Materials
Polypyrrole and Polyaniline Doped With Lignosulfonic Acid

Experiments have shown that electrically conductive polymers with water-soluble fractions can be synthesized by polymerization of pyrrole or aniline in the presence of lignosulfonic acid, which is a polymeric acid that can be derived relatively easily from the spent sulfite liquor...

Briefs: Materials
Tribological Characterization of Solid Surfaces

Reports labeled as chapters 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, and 10 of a NASA technical memorandum that addresses topics in tribology have been compiled into a document that emphasizes those aspects of the subject matter that pertain to chemical-vapor-deposited (CVD) diamond and diamond-like films. The...

Briefs: Materials

An improved method of accelerated testing reduces the time needed to analyze the abilities of zinc-rich primers to protect steel substrates against corrosion in a seacoast...

Briefs: Materials
Protective Shells for Composite Overwrapped Pressure Vessels

White Sands Test Facility (WSTF) scientists have developed an energy-absorbing laminated shell that is a prototype of lightweight, inexpensive, and removable covers to shield and otherwise protect carbon-composite overwrapped pressure vessels (COPVs). Although COPVs are superior to...

Briefs: Materials
Nonevaporable Getters To Maintain Vacuum in Sealed MEMS

Nonevaporable getters have been proposed for use in maintaining vacuum inside hermetically sealed microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) that rely on vacuum for proper operation. A vibratory microgyroscope is an example of such a MEMS. The proposed getters could also be used in such vacuum...

Briefs: Materials
Update on Electrolytes for Low-Temperature Lithium Cells

A report presents results of research on carbonate-based electrolytes to improve the low-temperature-performances of lithium-ion rechargeable electrochemical cells. The loss of performance with decreasing temperature is attributable largely to a decrease of ionic conductivity and the...

Briefs: Materials

Improved polymer electrolyte membranes for direct methanol fuel cells can be made by impregnating the baseline membrane material with cross-linked polystyrene (a copolymer of styrene...

Briefs: Materials

A laminated composite-material plate has been developed for use as a lightweight heat sink and mechanical support for rigid printed-circuit boards (PCBs) that hold surface-mounted...

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