Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning, ASA(ALT), Direct to Phase II

AI-Driven Production of Coarse- and Nano-Nitramines

Release Date: 06/11/2024
Solicitation: 24.4
Open Date: 06/26/2024
Topic Number: A244-035
Application Due Date: 07/30/2024
Duration: Up to 24 months
Close Date: 07/30/2024
Amount Up To: $2 million

Objective

This Army SBIR solicitation is for artificial intelligence and machine learning-driven methodologies that can  control the production processes for Nano-Nitramines. The Army seeks to produce the most efficient, effective formulations currently known in an agile and flexible manner. AI/ML-driven manufacturing and formulation science can apply “cradle to grave” for Nano-Nitramines, and can enable their widespread adoption by making research and production automated.

Description

The Army currently produces coarse nitramines (HMX, RDX, and CL-20) in enormous quantities and Nano-Nitramine in experimental batches. Significant delays occurred in transitioning Nano-Nitramine because manufacturing is especially time consuming. Furthermore, once produced, they are difficult to process. This is partly caused by the difficulty in producing and manipulating Nano-Nitramines and the low supply of CL-20 of any particle size.

We believe that AI/ML technologies will improve processes to produce coarse and nano-nitramines. The Army currently uses techniques to measure several critical parameters for the manufacturing of energetic materials. However, it cannot use the data effectively. We believe that AI/ML-controlled crystallization and manufacturing of nitramines will provide the following improvements:

  • The determination of methodologies that will produce the desired Nano-Nitramines.
  • Elucidation of the critical parameters of the crystallization and dissolution processes which can tailor to directly produce Nano-Nitramines.
  • Improvement of post crystallization processes such as mechanical attrition, which are currently limited to the industrial ~1-2 μm scale to directly produce nanomaterials.
  • Determination of the ideal particle size and packing ratios to use for various industrial processes involving consolidation when mixing and working with nanomaterials.
  • Reduction in rejection/reworking, higher throughput and lower costs for coarse nitramines (Class 1, V, and FEM).

Phase I

This topic will only accept Direct to Phase II proposals for contracts worth up to $2,000,000 over a 24-month performance period. https://www.armysbir.army.mil/phase/

Proposers interested in submitting a DP2 proposal must provide documentation to substantiate that the technology meets the scientific, technical merit and feasibility equivalent to a Phase I project. Documentation can include data, reports, specific measurements and the success criteria of a prototype.

Phase II

Firms will demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed techniques to monitor and control coarse nanomaterials during manufacturing. Vendors must implement the probes during the manufacturing process and collect data, and should then use the data with machine learning algorithms.

Phase III

  • Academic and corporate research focuses on the efficacy of leveraging AI/ML and modeling & simulation software in a diverse range of commercial use cases, namely healthcare.
  • On the defense side, Congress and the DoD have signaled their continued interest in critical chemical development in legislation and Department of Defense awards.
  • Of note, the DoD has leveraged the Defense Production Act Investments to award $192 million in contracts to increase supply of chemicals by 2028.
  • However, current companies are generic chemical suppliers who do not purport to use novel technologies to increase chemical production efficiency.
  • Potential dual use cases include:
    • Medicine manufacturing leveraging an AI-based estimator.
    • Chemical engineering, specifically regarding process optimization, material synthesis and quality control.
    • Agriculture chemical production and efficacy.
    • Electric vehicle battery chemistry development and discovery.
    • Chemical discovery in the research, development and academic research phases.

Submission Information

All eligible businesses must submit proposals by noon, ET.

To view the full solicitation details, click here.

For more information, and to submit your full proposal package, visit the DSIP Portal.

Applied SBIR Help Desk: usarmy.pentagon.hqda-asa-alt.mbx.army-applied-sbir-program@army.mil

Objective

This Army SBIR solicitation is for artificial intelligence and machine learning-driven methodologies that can  control the production processes for Nano-Nitramines. The Army seeks to produce the most efficient, effective formulations currently known in an agile and flexible manner. AI/ML-driven manufacturing and formulation science can apply “cradle to grave” for Nano-Nitramines, and can enable their widespread adoption by making research and production automated.

Description

The Army currently produces coarse nitramines (HMX, RDX, and CL-20) in enormous quantities and Nano-Nitramine in experimental batches. Significant delays occurred in transitioning Nano-Nitramine because manufacturing is especially time consuming. Furthermore, once produced, they are difficult to process. This is partly caused by the difficulty in producing and manipulating Nano-Nitramines and the low supply of CL-20 of any particle size.

We believe that AI/ML technologies will improve processes to produce coarse and nano-nitramines. The Army currently uses techniques to measure several critical parameters for the manufacturing of energetic materials. However, it cannot use the data effectively. We believe that AI/ML-controlled crystallization and manufacturing of nitramines will provide the following improvements:

  • The determination of methodologies that will produce the desired Nano-Nitramines.
  • Elucidation of the critical parameters of the crystallization and dissolution processes which can tailor to directly produce Nano-Nitramines.
  • Improvement of post crystallization processes such as mechanical attrition, which are currently limited to the industrial ~1-2 μm scale to directly produce nanomaterials.
  • Determination of the ideal particle size and packing ratios to use for various industrial processes involving consolidation when mixing and working with nanomaterials.
  • Reduction in rejection/reworking, higher throughput and lower costs for coarse nitramines (Class 1, V, and FEM).

Phase I

This topic will only accept Direct to Phase II proposals for contracts worth up to $2,000,000 over a 24-month performance period. https://www.armysbir.army.mil/phase/

Proposers interested in submitting a DP2 proposal must provide documentation to substantiate that the technology meets the scientific, technical merit and feasibility equivalent to a Phase I project. Documentation can include data, reports, specific measurements and the success criteria of a prototype.

Phase II

Firms will demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed techniques to monitor and control coarse nanomaterials during manufacturing. Vendors must implement the probes during the manufacturing process and collect data, and should then use the data with machine learning algorithms.

Phase III

  • Academic and corporate research focuses on the efficacy of leveraging AI/ML and modeling & simulation software in a diverse range of commercial use cases, namely healthcare.
  • On the defense side, Congress and the DoD have signaled their continued interest in critical chemical development in legislation and Department of Defense awards.
  • Of note, the DoD has leveraged the Defense Production Act Investments to award $192 million in contracts to increase supply of chemicals by 2028.
  • However, current companies are generic chemical suppliers who do not purport to use novel technologies to increase chemical production efficiency.
  • Potential dual use cases include:
    • Medicine manufacturing leveraging an AI-based estimator.
    • Chemical engineering, specifically regarding process optimization, material synthesis and quality control.
    • Agriculture chemical production and efficacy.
    • Electric vehicle battery chemistry development and discovery.
    • Chemical discovery in the research, development and academic research phases.

Submission Information

All eligible businesses must submit proposals by noon, ET.

To view the full solicitation details, click here.

For more information, and to submit your full proposal package, visit the DSIP Portal.

Applied SBIR Help Desk: usarmy.pentagon.hqda-asa-alt.mbx.army-applied-sbir-program@army.mil

Spheres

AI-Driven Production of Coarse- and Nano-Nitramines

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