First S²MARTS Research Project Award Set to Bring BNNT Capabilities to Light

May 2, 2024

May 5, 2024 – S2MARTS Research, under the Department of the Navy (DoN), has announced the award of its inaugural project, Characterization and Improvement of Boron Nitride Nanotubes (BNNTs) and Their Composites. The awardee is Purdue University.

“This first use of Strategic and Spectrum Missions Advanced Resilient Trusted Systems (S²MARTS) Research authority will allow NSWC Crane to efficiently perform BNNT research with Purdue University to advance the understanding of the use of BNNT for DoD applications. This award allowed NSWC Crane to get non-traditional performers whose research will be key to this,” said Doug Crowe, S2MARTS Director.

Made possible by the OTA agreement under The Strategic & Spectrum Missions Advanced Resilient Trusted Systems S2MARTS, created by the Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC) Crane, S2MARTS Research was created to better establish the relationship between research and prototyping. The award of the first project under S2MARTS Research will open the door for new, non-traditional innovators with state-of-the-art research capabilities, like Purdue University, to take their place at the forefront of defense technology.

This project aims to enhance capabilities in designing, processing, characterizing and testing BNNT materials for research and development. BNNTs possess many unique properties that make them a promising material for defense technologies, such as directional thermal conductivity, high strength and electrical resistivity. As manufacturing techniques improve and these materials become more easily accessible, their optimization needs attention for continued development. BNNTs, along with their potential form factors and processing methods, must be characterized at a fundamental level in order to be implemented into U.S. defense strategies.

Ultimately, Purdue University’s mission is to enhance the performance of BNNTs and enable novel use cases, enabling the Navy to capitalize on the collective potential of multiple materials systems for innovation.

The unveiling of this project reinforces the Navy’s leading position in research and development, affirming its commitment to harnessing state-of-the-art materials for future defense applications. S2MARTS Research is poised to generate noteworthy breakthroughs in the field of material science. The announcement of its first awarded project is a significant leap towards more advanced U.S. defense capabilities.

Get Involved with S2MARTS Research 

The announcement of this project further positions the Navy at the forefront of research and development, ensuring its readiness to leverage cutting-edge materials for future defense applications. The project’s anticipated duration of 12 months, with the possibility of a 24-month extension, aims to yield significant advancements in material science.  

 S²MARTS Research was designed to open the door for new innovators who previously would not have been able to support projects in an academic or research-focused capacity. Under NSTXL’s open consortium model, current members already have immediate access to this opportunity. Innovators who wish to only operate under the S²MARTS Research program will be offered free membership. 

About S²MARTS Research  

S²MARTS Research is creating a more connected and streamlined Other Transaction Agreement (OTA) ecosystem, uniquely positioned to better establish the relationship between research and prototyping. Operating under the 10 U.S.C 4021 authority, the S²MARTS Research consortium can carry out research projects that meet the needs and requirements of the government at any stage, allowing for a natural transition from research to prototype development.  

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