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Federal Fabrics has the ability to offer such a wide variety of products and AirBeam applications due to our history of success in innovation from research and engineering projects. Below is a quick history of the projects we’ve been a part of in the past.
Future Mobile Medical Systems (FMSS) – Federal-Fabrics-Fibers was contracted by Mobile Medical Systems International to design and produce a rapid set up, self deploying medical shelter. Two of these shelters are interfaced directly to an ISO container and provide a chemically protected recovery area of 1200 sq. ft. in less than ten minutes. The shelters are hermetically sealed to the ISO container and can be deployed even when chemical contaminants are present. Mobile Medical is currently discussing the design parameters for the 2nd generation FMSS with Federal-Fabrics-Fibers .
Extrusion Cast – Cost Effective Chemical Protective Barrier Fabric – Early in 2003 Federal-Fabrics-Fibers produced several yards of a prototype extrusion coated, fluorinated material, zero porosity, FR, CB fabric. This fabric needs further refinement to meet all the military requirements, but is a promising first attempt.
Inflatable Structures (Wide Span AirBeams) – During this project AirBeams with minor diameters ranging from 2 to 36” and spans from 52 inches to 80 ft were produced and evaluated. The load carrying capacity of the beams were determined as a function of inflation pressure, beam diameter and span. The data was utilized to develop a system of empirical equations that are able to accurately predict the load carrying capacity of any inflated arched AirBeam. The data and equations allow for the efficient design of AirBeam supported shelters.
Passive Condensation Abatement – A major problem with “simple shelters”, is condensation onto the inner surface of the shelter skin, which collects over cold nights to the point that the occupants get rained on in the morning. One way to resolve this problem is to include a material which allows moisture through the skin. Federal-Fabrics-Fibers determined that the ideal material for this application would be a Virgin (uncoated) Polypropylene which is hydrophilic, as a result a fabric woven from these yarns will have good wicking properties. Polypropylene is also non porous and will therefore retain no moisture within the material allowing excess surface moisture to easily evaporate. The combination of high moisture transport capability (wicking) and little water retention within the material make it ideally suited as an inner shelter skin or inner skin panels. Several candidate fabrics were produced and evaluated in the laboratory as part of this study. Permeation studies showed they possess favorable transport properties which make them ideal candidates for further evaluation in full scale structures.
Chemical Barrier Fabrics – During this project a detailed study of commercially available CB fabrics and materials was undertaken. Candidate materials were evaluated based CB permeation properties as well as FR, cost, weight, and manufacturing processes. In 2001 a final report suggesting the most desirable properties for a CB fabric and the best potential CB candidates was presented to the Army. As a follow up to this initial “paper” study Federal-Fabrics-Fibers was asked to produce CB fabric samples for government evaluators.
Seamless Paraglider – Federal-Fabrics-Fibers received Phase I and II funding to produce a light weight bonded parafoil. This parafoil was designed to be an inexpensively mass produced “one time use, many times desired” cargo parafoil. The bulk of the energy devoted to this project was to design and produced a new type of light weight fabric that could be bonded using thermal techniques. In 203 a bonded parafoil was produced and delivered, Federal-Fabrics-Fibers is awaiting final testing and evaluation by the U.S. Military.
Chemically and Biologically Protected Shelter (CBPS) – This project was funded as an SBIR Phase I and II effort. It was developed into a fully commercialized product, which is still being sold to government suppliers Engineered Support Systems Inc. (ESSI). The project received the Vice Presidential Hammer Award in 1999. This award is presented to companies and individuals who have made significant contribution in support of reinventing government principles. The product is credited with a cost savings of up to 66 % to the Government with a projected cost savings of 5 Million $ over the life of the program. To date over 1,000 arched beams have been sold for a total of over $1M in revenues. This system has been deployed in Operation Iraqi Freedom. Federal-Fabrics-Fibers was also awarded by the US Army with the Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) Quality Award (1999) as well as the SBIR Tibbetts Award. These prestigious national awards are made annually to those small firms, projects, organizations and individuals judged to exemplify the very best in SBIR achievement.
Ballistic and Fire Proof fabrics – In 1997 Federal-Fabrics-Fibers produced several multi-layered ballistic blanket panels, these blankets were designed to cover ammunition and reduce the possibility of sympathetic detonations . The panels were tested in house for both fire and ballistic protection, and proved very effective, in fact better (on a weight per unit area basis) that the state of the art materials used at that time. The sample blanket had an area weight of 125 oz/yd2, a V50 rating (44 grain simulated projectile) of 1534 ft/s, and could provide fire and thermal protection from direct contact with a propane torch for 15 minutes.
Blast Mitigation Barricades – In 1997 Federal-Fabrics-Fibers was funded to produce a rapid ammunition barricade. This barricade consisted of several water filled tanks which would attenuate and deflect a blast shock wave away from the protected object. As part of this project Federal-Fabrics-Fibers delivered a system that was tested in White Sands New Mexico against a blast of 20,000 lbs of explosives.
Ballistic Protective Wall Coverings – Federal-Fabrics-Fibers produced a type of “wall paper” woven from Kevlar® which were tested in Quantico and proved highly effective in reducing spalling.
Mars Rover – Federal-Fabrics-Fibers received a Phase I contract from to produce an inflatable mars rover.
Seamless and Stretchable Glove MVT Development – In 1996 Federal-Fabrics-Fibers produced a permeable membrane glove for the U. S. Army. The water vapor permeation through the membrane was determined as a function of composition, thickness, and concentration gradient.
Carbon Electrodes for Super Capacitors – During this DARPA funded project batch and continuous processes for activation of carbon tows were developed. The energy density, power density, total capacitance, surface area, and pore sized distribution of the activated carbon filaments was determined.Federal-Fabrics-Fibers.