TA&T Part of Team to Improve EMP Protection
The Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA)/SCC announces the beginning of a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract with Instant Access Networks, LLC (IAN) and its subcontractors as of March 28, 2016 entitled, “Accelerating Society-wide EMP Protection of Critical Infrastructure and Micro-grids”. DTRA’s request for proposals (RFP) was an invitation to small businesses to participate in a commercial R&D program to create EMP protected micro grids for critical infrastructure needed both on and off military bases and other defense critical infrastructure. The need was explained by DTRA as follows: “An electromagnetic (EM) attack (nuclear electromagnetic pulse [EMP] or non-nuclear EMP [e.g., high-power microwave, HPM]) has the potential to degrade or shut down portions of the electric power grid important to the DoD…. Restoring the commercial grid from the still functioning regions may not be possible or could take weeks or months.”
A key task on this contract is to demonstrate how to accelerate the adoption of EMP-protected critical infrastructure and microgrids among civilian institutions that need to operate in island mode during a prolonged power outage. These critical suppliers to military bases include water utilities, hospitals, and emergency communications. The final report would include proposals for additional research in the improvement of component technologies that comprise an EMP-protected microgrid such as EMP shielding, energy generation, energy storage and energy savings technology. Those improvements can lead to performance and cost advantages that could make these microgrids competitive with grid provided power in some areas of the country and more easily funded in every location.
IAN set its own goal to gather collaborators who will fund EMP protected microgrids for water utilities, hospitals and emergency operations centers so that they don’t have to find funds out of their capital budgets. Fairfax Water, a subcontractor to IAN in this contract, is a great example because of its critical role to many defense critical infrastructure applications in the national capital region and because of the attractive electricity rates it enjoys. Fairfax Water supplies Fort Belvoir and the surrounding areas with 163 million gallons of water per day. Though Fairfax Water lies outside the base, it is essential for base operations but likely to be vulnerable to EMP because of its dependence on civilian power grids that are not protected from EMP even though the local utility in this instance is otherwise extremely reliable. Protecting civilian infrastructure such as Fairfax Water is just as important as protecting the critical applications on the base.
IAN developed EMP-protected microgrids that included solar, wind and diesel power generation and control rooms independently tested to exceed military standards for EMP by 1000 fold. IAN subcontractors include Technology Assessment and Transfer (TA&T), a materials science R&D firm that will provide technical assistance on electromagnetic shielding materials and components of energy storage systems; DC Fusion/ Power Analytics that will provide support for direct current microgrids and modeling software for the design and management of microgrids; Jaxon Engineering and Maintenance who will provide EMP testing support and EMP shielding manufacturing guidance; and Fairfax Water, who will provide water utility management guidance.
TA&T Transparent Spinel Armor Passes Rigorous ATPD-2352R Testing
Annapolis, MD - November 25, 2015 - TA&T is proud to announce that its lightweight, transparent Spinel armor has passed the rigorous All-Weather ATPD-2352R tests, administered by the United States Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC), in Warren, MI. TA&T's Transparent Spinel armor solutions are the lightest known armors to have successfully passed these requirements.
TA&T's Transparent Spinel armor is comprised of a hard, ceramic Spinel strikeface with a proprietary laminate backing, designed to survive stringent ballistic, thermal shock, extreme temperature, sand/rain erosion, and de-icing requirements.
The lightweight nature of TA&T's Transparent Spinel armor is ideal for weight sensitive applications requiring force protection, including helicopter/rotorcraft, clandestine ground vehicles, riverine and fast attack boats, mounted gunner protection kits, and personal protection in the form of face and riot shields.
TA&T President Honored by Worldwide Who's Who for Excellence in Technology
Larry Lee Fehrenbacher, Ph.D., President of Technology Assessment and Transfer, Inc., was recently named a VIP member of Worldwide Who's Who. This special distinction honors individuals who have shown exceptional commitment to achieving personal and professional success.
Dr. Fehrenbacher has 50 years of professional experience. He previously served as a U.S. Airforce officer for 20 years, working in laboratories and managing groups. He gained a strong technical background, which prompted him to start his own company. Technology Assessment and Transfer, Inc. is a material technology company that provides ceramic engineering, advanced materials, metals and composites. The company endeavors to empower clients with solutions to make them more competitive in the commercial marketplace. Through innovative designs and advanced materials, they provide solutions for private and government sector agencies. Dr. Fehrenbacher excels overseeing the daily operations, directing teams, writing proposals and reports, and presiding over strategic planning.
Dr. Fehrenbacher received a doctor of philosophy in ceramic engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). He is a member of the Senior Advisory Committee at the UIUC, the SPIE, the American Ceramic Society and the Small Business Research Institute. He also serves as a judge for Engineering Open House exhibits and local science fairs. He donates time and money to local Special Olympics and Arthritis Foundation organizations. In his spare time, he plays golf and participates in World Masters basketball tournaments.
Read the press release from Worldwide Who's Who.
TA&T Produced Ceramic Central to Discovery of Water in Martian Soil
Annapolis, MD – October 4, 2013 – NASA reported late in late September that the Mars Curiosity Rover discovered water in the soil of Mars. A Technology Assessment and Transfer (TA&T) component was critical to these findings.
Ceramic heater bodies developed, designed, and manufactured by TA&T are a central part of the Sample Analysis on Mars (SAM) instrument suite on board the Curiosity Rover. Manufactured via Ceramic Stereolithography, a form of 3D printing and additive manufacturing, the oven heater bodies can withstand the extreme temperatures, in excess of 1,500⁰F, required for heating soil samples. TA&T was selected by NASA to fabricate these parts due to the high expense of traditional manufacturing techniques.
Due to the oven heaters success in the SAM Suite, TA&T is currently developing enhanced and optimized designs for NASA. These next generation components will improve upon the capabilities already seen on the Curiosity Rover.
Ceramic Stereolithography, or CSL, is a rapid prototyping technique that builds complex shapes layer-by-layer. This enables previously unmachinable designs to be made. The CSL process has applications beyond space exploration, including those which have consumer and industrial applications. The process requires no tooling and therefore allows rapid prototyping of fully-functional ceramic parts. TA&T has been involved in the development of rocket engine fuel injectors, heat exchangers for cooling electronics in hybrid electric vehicles, ceramic molds for turbine engine blades, and electrosurgical medical device tips, among other development projects.
TA&T's Ceramic Stereolithography process highlighted by Ceramic Tech Today
Annapolis, MD - November 30, 2012 - The American Ceramic Society's (ACeRS) Ceramic Tech Today blog interviewed Walter Zimbeck, manager of the TA&T's Ceramic Micro Devices group, about the work performed to supply parts for NASA's Curiosity Rover. Read the full interview here.
- TA&T Highlighted for NASA Curiosity Rover Work in the Annapolis Capital
- Ceramic Oven Housings Manufactured by TA&T Now Sitting on Martian Surface
- TA&T Domes In Laser Focus World
- TA&T Ceramic Stereolithographically Produced Parts Integral to Instrument Package on NASA Mars Science Laboratory’s Curiosity Rover