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
Polyimide Aerogel Thin Films

Polyimide aerogels have been cross-linked through multifunctional amines. This invention builds on “Polyimide Aerogels With Three-Dimensional Cross-Linked Structure,” (LEW-18486-1), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 34, No. 8 (August 2010), page 38, and may be considered as a continuation of that invention, which results in...

Briefs: Materials
Composite Laminate With Coefficient of Thermal Expansion Matching D263 Glass

The International X-ray Observatory project seeks to make an X-ray telescope assembly with 14,000 flexible glass segments. The glass used is commercially available SCHOTT D263 glass. Thermal expansion causes the mirror to distort out of alignment. A housing material is...

Briefs: Materials
Asymmetric Supercapacitor for Long-Duration Power Storage

A document discusses a project in which a series of novel hybrid positive electrode materials was developed and tested in asymmetric capacitors with carbon negative electrodes. The electrochemical performance of the hybrid capacitors was characterized by cyclic voltammetry and a DC...

Briefs: Materials

Building on previous knowledge acquired through research on thin-film batteries, three-dimensional (3D) porous macroscopic...

Briefs: Materials
Enhanced-Adhesion Multiwalled Carbon Nanotubes on Titanium Substrates for Stray Light Control

Carbon nanotubes previously grown on silicon have extremely low reflectance, making them a good candidate for stray light suppression. Silicon, however, is not a good structural material for stray light components such as tubes, stops, and baffles....

Briefs: Materials
Detection of Carbon Monoxide Using Polymer-Composite Films With a Porphyrin-Functionalized Polypyrrole

Post-fire air constituents that are of interest to NASA include CO and some acid gases (HCl and HCN). CO is an important analyte to be able to sense in human habitats since it is a marker for both pre-fire detection and post-fire cleanup.

Briefs: Materials
Ultra-Lightweight Nanocomposite Foams and Sandwich Structures for Space Structure Applications

Microcellular nanocomposite foams and sandwich structures have been created to have excellent electrical conductivity and radiation-resistant properties using a new method that does not involve or release any toxicity. The nanocomposite structures have...

Briefs: Materials

Over the past 30 years, significant technology gains in polymer engineering have greatly expanded the applications suited to adhesive bonding with epoxy resins. Advanced bonding...

Briefs: Materials
Electrochemical Ultracapacitors Using Graphitic Nanostacks

Electrochemical ultracapacitors (ECs) have been developed using graphitic nanostacks as the electrode material. The advantages of this technology will be the reduction of device size due to superior power densities and relative powers compared to traditional activated carbon electrodes....

Briefs: Materials
Large-Strain Transparent Magnetoactive Polymer Nanocomposites

A document discusses polymer nanocomposite superparamagnetic actuators that were prepared by the addition of organically modified superparamagnetic nanoparticles to the polymer matrix. The nanocomposite films exhibited large deformations under a magnetostatic field with a low loading...

Briefs: Materials
High-Temperature Shape Memory Polymers

Shape memory materials undergo physical conformation changes when exposed to an external stimulus, such as a change in temperature. Such materials have a permanent shape, but can be reshaped above a critical temperature and fixed into a temporary shape when cooled under stress to below the critical...

Briefs: Materials
Non-Toxic, Low-Freezing, Drop-In Replacement Heat Transfer Fluids

A non-toxic, non-flammable, low-freezing heat transfer fluid is being developed for drop-in replacement within current and future heat transfer loops currently using water or alcohol-based coolants. Numerous water-soluble compounds were down-selected and screened for...

Briefs: Materials
Modular Flooring System

The modular flooring system (MFS) was developed to provide a portable, modular, durable carpeting solution for NASA’s Robotics Alliance Project’s (RAP) outreach efforts. It was also designed to improve and replace a modular flooring system that was too heavy for safe use and transportation. The MFS was developed for...

Briefs: Materials
Materials That Enhance Efficiency and Radiation Resistance of Solar Cells

A thin layer (≈10 microns) of a novel “transparent” fluorescent material is applied to existing solar cells or modules to effectively block and convert UV light, or other lower solar response waveband of solar radiation, to visible or IR light that can be more...

Briefs: Materials
Sealing Materials for Use in Vacuum at High Temperatures

Sealing materials that can be applied and left in place in vacuum over a wide range of temperatures (especially temperatures of a few thousand degrees Celsius) have been conceived and investigated for potential utility in repairing thermal-protection tiles on the space shuttles in orbit...

Briefs: Materials
Radiation Shielding System Using a Composite of Carbon Nanotubes Loaded With Electropolymers

Single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) coated with a hydrogen-rich, electrically conducting polymer such as polyethylene, receive and dissipate a portion of incoming radiation pulse energy to electrical signals that are transmitted along the CNT axes, and...

Briefs: Materials
Nano Sponges for Drug Delivery and Medicinal Applications

This invention is a means of delivering a drug, or payload, to cells using non-covalent associations of the payload with nanoengineered scaffolds; specifically, functionalized single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) and their derivatives where the payload is effectively sequestered by the...

Briefs: Materials
Molecular Technique to Understand Deep Microbial Diversity

Current sequencing-based and DNA microarray techniques to study microbial diversity are based on an initial PCR (polymerase chain reaction) amplification step. However, a number of factors are known to bias PCR amplification and jeopardize the true representation of bacterial diversity....

Briefs: Materials
Methods and Compositions Based on Culturing Microorganisms in Low Sedimental Fluid Shear Conditions

The benefits of applying a low sedimental fluid shear environment to manipulate microorganisms were examined. Microorganisms obtained from a low sedimental fluid shear culture, which exhibit modified phenotypic and molecular genetic...

Briefs: Materials
Three Dimensionally Interlinked, Dense, Solid Form of Single-Walled CNT Ropes

A 3D networked, dense form of single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNT) has been made through isotropic shrinking of a gel-like SWNT-water paste by very slow evaporation. Approximately 35 g of Raw HiPco nanotubes were cleaned by the method of soft baking (250 °C for 15...

Briefs: Materials
Flexible Plug Repair for Shuttle Wing Leading Edge

In response to the Columbia Accident Investigation Board report, a plug repair kit has been developed to enable astronauts to repair the space shuttle’s wing leading edge (WLE) during orbit. The plug repair kit consists of several 17.78-cm-diameter carbon/ silicon carbide (C/SiC) cover plates...

Briefs: Materials
Use of Functionalized Carbon Nanotubes for Covalent Attachment of Nanotubes to Silicon

The purpose of the invention is to covalently attach functionalized carbon nanotubes to silicon. This step allows for the introduction of carbon nanotubes onto all manner of silicon surfaces, and thereby introduction of carbon nanotubes covalently into...

Briefs: Materials
Highly Stable and Active Catalyst for Sabatier Reactions

Highly active Ru/TiO2 catalysts for Sabatier reaction have been developed. The catalysts have shown to be stable under repeated shutting down/startup conditions. When the Ru/TiO2 catalyst is coated on the engineered substrate FeCrAlY felt, activity enhancement is more...

Briefs: Materials

Polyoxyphenylene triazole sulfonic acid has been proposed as a basis for development of improved proton-conducting polymeric materials for solidelectrolyte membranes in hydrogen/air...

Briefs: Materials
Molecular Adsorber Coating

A document discusses a zeolite-based sprayable molecular adsorber coating that has been developed to alleviate the size and weight issues of current ceramic puck-based technology, while providing a configuration that more projects can use to protect against degradation from outgassed materials within a spacecraft,...

Briefs: Materials
Temperature-Sensitive Coating Sensor Based on Hematite

A temperature-sensitive coating, based on hematite (iron III oxide), has been developed to measure surface temperature using spectral techniques. The hematite powder is added to a binder that allows the mixture to be painted on the surface of a test specimen. The coating dynamically changes...

Briefs: Materials
Detection of Carbon Monoxide Using Polymer-Carbon Composite Films

A carbon monoxide (CO) sensor was developed that can be incorporated into an existing sensing array architecture. The CO sensor is a low-power chemiresistor that operates at room temperature, and the sensor fabrication techniques are compatible with ceramic substrates.

Briefs: Materials
Substituted Quaternary Ammonium Salts Improve Low-Temperature Performance of Double-Layer Capacitors

Double-layer capacitors are unique energy storage devices, capable of supporting large current pulses as well as a very high number of charging and discharging cycles. The performance of double-layer capacitors is highly dependent on the nature...

Briefs: Materials
Standardization of a Volumetric Displacement Measurement for Two-Body Abrasion Scratch Test Data Analysis

A limitation has been identified in the existing test standards used for making controlled, two-body abrasion scratch measurements based solely on the width of the resultant score on the surface of the material. A new, more robust method is...

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