Volume 9, Number 4 July/August 2001 Small Business/SBIR
SBIR Research Yields Spin-Off Company
With help from NASA Glenn Research Center’s SBIR program, a small Cincinnati company with a technique for increasing the durability of metal components of a turbine engine has successfully brought a product to the marketplace and spun off a company to market the process.
With funding support from the SBIR program, along with technical assistance from GRC researchers on the ULTRASAFE program’s Crack Resistant Disk Materials element, Lambda Research, Inc. perfected their product. Their low-plasticity-burnishing apparatus produces a final surface finish which imparts a deep layer of compressive residual stress at the surface that increases the fatigue life of metallic components and their ability to withstand cracking. The affordable burnishing process produces results that are superior to those from conventional shot peening, and comparable to those of the considerably more expensive laser shock peening process.
“We fully expect it to be very useful in aircraft engine and airframe overhaul, where it can extend the life of an aging aircraft and substantially reduce the overall cost of ownership,” said Paul Prevey, President of Lambda Research. In May, after three years in the program, Prevey announced that his company had begun to market its low-plasticity-burnishing process through a spin-off company, Surface Enhancement Technologies.
“This is the kind of success we like to see achieved in our program,” said Walter Kim, SBIR Program Manager at Glenn. “We could tell by the continuing interest of the military and the commercial aircraft industry, as well as NASA, that they are really on to something.” Q
For more information, contact Laurel Stauber at Glenn Research Center, & 216/433-2820, ) email@example.com Please mention you read about it in Innovation.