You are here

Corrosion Inhibiting Self-Expanding Foam

The US Army seeks a partner to license and commercialize an anti-corrosion self-expanding foam for use in hard to protect internal structures

Image Right
The metal panel was protected by the Army’s foam technology, exposed to 500 hours of salt fog, and the foam was removed.  Anti-corrosion protection is visible by the clear boundary between areas covered by the foam and the unprotected edges of the panel
The metal panel was protected by the Army’s foam technology, exposed to 500 hours of salt fog, and the foam was removed. Anti-corrosion protection is visible by the clear boundary between areas covered by the foam and the unprotected edges of the p
The Technology: 

The Army Research Laboratory (ARL) has developed and tested a patent pending self-expanding polyurethane foam containing either organic or inorganic corrosion inhibitors.  The technology is especially useful for application in hollow or sandwiched metal structures.  Vapor phase corrosion inhibitors (VCI) are commonly used to protect enclosed surfaces from corrosion; however, such surfaces need to be physically sealed or the protection will be washed away.  Foams can provide useful barriers against moisture, but they are susceptible to corrosion at the margins that compromises the integrity of the foam.  The combination of corrosion inhibitors in self-expanding foam overcomes the limitations of the individual components by creating a mutually beneficial combination of chemical corrosion inhibition and physical moisture barrier.

The Army’s anti-corrosion foam is compatible with a broad range of existing polyurethane foam chemistries and delivery methods.  The technology also holds the potential to tailor formulations of vapor phase corrosion inhibitors and foam systems to match the specific application, such as the differing corrosion inhibition requirements of aluminum vs. steel.

Benefits: 
  • Effective Protection:  Maintained 91% of adhesion strength after 500 hours in a salt fog test whereas standard foam maintained only 55% (see graph)
  • COTS Materials:  Compatible with a variety of commercially available corrosion inhibitors as well as various commercially available foam formulation and delivery systems
The Opportunity: 

• Issued patent 8,920,714 is available for license
• Potential for collaboration with Army Research Laboratory researchers
• Additional information available at techlinkcenter.org/foam

Contacts: