Current Projects

METSS operates programs for the benefit of the US government as well as private industrial and commercial interests. Our primary mission is to utilize our diverse experience and expertise in advanced and applied science and technology to develop materials and products with near-term potential for commercialization. While capable of conducting basic research and development programs, METSS Corporation typically focuses its efforts on applied technology. Using our knowledge base, we develop innovative, cost-effective solutions to fulfill our client’s needs. Current government programs are focused on defense related problems but the developed solutions typically have applicability in the private sector as well. These include:

  • Quick and reliable hydrogen embrittlement testing (AF181-010)

METSS is developing a tensile test for hydrogen embrittlement that can be executed in less than 30 hours. The results should, ideally, be comparable to, or better than, ASTM F519 in defining acceptable levels of residual hydrogen in high tensile strength steels. It may also be possible to correlate test results using the new method to the legacy ASTM method using a math-based approach which accounts for the key factors that affect the HE failure process.

  • Chilled brine separation (AF181-011)

This program focuses on practical engineering solutions to remove a contaminant from aqueous glycol solutions at Arnold AFB which are used to adjust the properties of test stand air. The ability to condition the ambient air to operating conditions like experienced by aviation systems (e.g., extreme cold, extreme heat, low pressure, high airspeed, etc.) are critical to base operations. As such, any interruption in service, especially a long-term outage due to equipment damage from contaminant-driven corrosion, is unacceptable. METSS is leveraging a combination of chemistry and sound chemical engineering principles, while working within the existing Arnold equipment, to provide a solution involving the least amount of modification while achieving program goals. A combination of numerical modeling and applied statistics will define the optimal process operating envelope and provide a sound basis for trials in the full-scale system.

  • Surface ship fat line towed array cut-resistant vibration isolation module (VIM) hose (N181-034)

Leveraging multiple prior efforts which focused on cut and abrasion resistance of a similar Navy system, the fat line tow cable, as well as increasing the self-sealing and crash and ballistic tolerance of flexible aviation fuel bladders, and the development of novel fly-through covers for tomahawk missiles, METSS is developing a materials solution for the vibration isolation modules (VIMs) used on Navy submarines. These systems require a high degree of flexibility and resilience, yet are vulnerable to cut and abrasions due to various threats including longline fishing hooks that are common in the ocean environment. METSS is currently developing and testing novel materials to enhance VIM resistance to these threats. The overall effort is driven by METSS’ experience with design of experiments and advanced numerical techniques to arrive at a near optimal solution, despite the significant complexity of the system and demanding performance metrics.

  • Propellant material additives for electrical ignition application (OSD173-J04)

METSS is enhancing the bulk electrical properties of common propellants for small arms ammunition by incorporating additives that reduce the dielectric strength. This leads to more rapid and efficient electrical ignition without affecting the other desirable bulk properties of the propellant or the energy per unit mass. In turn, this will allow for more consistent internal ballistics which increases accuracy.

  • Fast-setting, high-strength, material for expedient pavement repair (AF161-002)

METSS developed a rapid runway repair polymeric pavement patch material for repair of major munitions damage to Air Force runways. The primary goals involved development of a material that could cure within one hour and withstand the pressures and loads from an F-15 or C-17 without undue deflection or creep.

  • Improved non-damaging method of removing powder coating system (AF171-094)

METSS is developing a powder coating removal technology that is compatible with multiple substrates including soft metals like magnesium. The stripping technology is primarily chemical and requires only minor mechanical force to limit part attrition. The technology produces a cleaned surface that is defect free and similar to a ‘Near White Metal, SSPC-SP 10, NACE #2 for Steel’ after paint removal. The formulation is less hazardous than products based on methylene chloride and more effective than formulations using benzyl alcohol.

  • Find a substitute for methylene chloride in depaint operations at Hill AFB (AF131-198)

Recognizing the need to reduce the use of hazardous air pollutants in Air Force operations, METSS formulated a replacement for methylene chloride in paint stripping operations that is environmentally friendly and does not interfere with subsequent water treatment processes at Hill AFB.

  • High voltage antenna protection for hand-held and man-pack radios (N153-126)

METSS identified and evaluated protective materials for radio antennas against high voltage, low-hanging power lines, i.e., those associated with electric grids often found in battle zones throughout the Middle East, South Asia and Central Asia. The goal was to design a protective, insulative system that reduces the risk of electrocution to Marine Corps Radio Operators and damaging the antenna’s performance. The developed cover excelled in several key performance area: ruggedness, low-friction, lightweight, easy-to-install, easy integration to existing whip and blade antennas, and suppresses visual cues.

  • Fat line tow cable (N151-037)

Under this program, METSS developed a more mechanically robust tow cable for the TB-16 towed array, maintaining the current copper core and cable diameter, while gaining no more than 20% weight when compared with the Lightweight Tow Cable. METSS improved the mechanical properties of the polymeric material used in the outer cable jacket while still meeting other materials performance objectives. Full scale testing was performed with the results showing better performance than the original program targets.

  • Room temperature ballistic testing backing material (A142-086)

The program focus is on the development of a ballistic backing material formulation that demonstrates the same mechanical response (i.e., rheological behavior and elastomeric recovery) at room temperature as Roma Plastilina #1 at 100 °F while also proving scalable materials and manufacturing methods capable of producing the replacement product formulation in a reliable and reproducible manner.

  • Synthetic lubricating & hydraulic oil for motion control, steam turbines and gears, military symbol 2190-TEP replacement (N04-160)

This effort resulted in the development of a high-performance synthetic lubricant superior to the current mineral-based oil, 2190-TEP, used aboard naval submarines. METSS designed a fully synthetic lubricant (designated 2190-S) containing a viscous blend of synthetic, engineered hydrocarbons and additives that exceeds requirements described in the MIL-DTL-32353A specification (i.e., targeted improvements for main and auxiliary turbines, gears, air compressors, hydraulic systems, and other mission-critical components). The 2190-S formulation features an array of enhanced chemical, physical, and tribological properties, which collectively improve the lubricant’s thermal stability, resistance to oxidation, lubricity (resistance to seizure and scuffing), and risk against flame propagation. The synthetic oil is currently being integrated into the US submarine fleet but has much broader applications for surface ships, land vehicles, and broadly within the civilian sector where high-performance lubrication is critical.

  • Innovative marking technology for hand grenades (A18-077)

METSS is developing a customized urethane ink, applied by an ink jet printer, that is designed for printing on curved surfaces. The customized ink, tailored specifically for urethane systems, will be physically resilient, resistant to chemical agents, will adhere readily to Noryl N190X, will possess a long lasting yellow color, and will utilize additives to adjust other properties, such as viscosity for increased print quality and also for color retention under UV exposure.