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Advanced Materials Development at Rdecom-Ardec

Paul Redner1, Deepak Kapoor1, Rajen Patel2, Chris Haines1, Darold Martin1, and Moon Chung1. (1) Energetics and Warheads Division, US Army ARDEC, Bldg 3022, AMSRD-AAR-MEE-W, Picatinny, NJ 07806, (2) Energetics and Warheads Division, US Army, ARDEC, Bldg 3028, AMSRD-AAR-MEE-W, Picatinny Arsenal, NJ 07806-5000

A number of approaches are being explored in order to fabricate materials that take advantage of the fundamental change in a material's attributes at the nanoscale. Nanomaterials and nanostructured materials exhibit superior strength-to-weight ratios, improved conductivity, improved reactivity and, most importantly, tunability of all of these attributes at the nanoscale. Materials are being developed using both “top-down” and “bottom-up” approaches to meet various technology gaps that have been identified by the Warfighter.

ARDEC has established a Nanomaterials Technology Center to directly address the need for both a consistent source of various nanomaterials – such as metals, metal oxides, non-oxide ceramics, and composites – as well as a central location to both characterize and fabricate these materials into useful parts for end item applications. The NTC provides the DoD with the ability to identify, evaluate, and develop new technologies to meet current and future technology gaps and directly address single-point failures.

ARDEC's internal capabilities are enhanced by teaming with outside organizations that bring their own technologies to the table. Through these partnerships, ARDEC has been applying new technologies with its own expertise to tackle Advanced Materials needs for the Army.

The potential of advanced materials, such as nanomaterials and nanostructured materials, is great. Research will continue with the goal of increasing the speed at which these materials are processed, evaluated, and incorporated. This will be accomplished by expanding on current prototyping capabilities and by evaluating each material through a multidisciplinary approach.