Solvent-Free Production of Alkaline Earth Metal Titanates for Electronics Applications

EPA Contract Number: EPD05029
Title: Solvent-Free Production of Alkaline Earth Metal Titanates for Electronics Applications
Investigators: Jones, David A.
Small Business: NanoScale Materials, Inc.
EPA Contact: Richards, April
Phase: I
Project Period: March 1, 2005 through August 31, 2005
Project Amount: $70,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (2005) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: SBIR - Nanotechnology , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) , Nanotechnology


As the electronics industry grows and the trend towards miniaturization continues, the need for high-performance electroceramic materials and environmentally friendly processes for their production will become more prevalent. Barium and strontium titanate are ferroelectric materials commonly used in multilayer ceramic capacitors and as embedded capacitance in printed circuit boards. Currently, these materials are synthesized using one of three primary methods. These methods include sol-gel, hydrothermal crystallization, or repeated communition followed by calcination.

This research project will utilize NanoScale Materials, Inc.’s extensive experience in the development, production, and application of high-performance nanocrystalline chemicals to produce barium and strontium titanate materials with improved performance, using more environmentally friendly processes than the current state-of-the-art. This will be accomplished with a solid-phase reaction process that eliminates the large organic solvent and wastewater streams associated with sol-gel or hydrothermal processes. Preliminary research has shown that alkaline earth metal titanates can be produced using high surface area nanocrystalline precursors at significantly lower temperatures and with reduced communition intensity and residence time. NanoActive™ TiO2, which has a specific surface area of at least 500 m2/g, will be used as a precursor material in conjunction with commercially available alkaline earth metal oxides, hydroxides, and carbonates. Only environmentally friendly byproducts will be released.

The titanate materials produced will be evaluated for purity, textural characteristics, dielectric constant, and electrical resistivity. A comprehensive economic evaluation then will be conducted on the best performing electroceramic materials produced, and a comparison to the state-of-the-art will be drawn. Phase II will focus on optimization of the production process with respect to the desired electronic properties and scaling of production capabilities to the pilot scale using methods that are further scalable to commercially viable production capacities. Phase II also will focus on adaptation of NanoScale Materials’ proprietary TiO2 production process to synthesize alkaline earth metal titanate coatings for electronic noise suppression applications.

Supplemental Keywords:

small business, SBIR, electroceramic materials, titanate materials, titanate coatings, solvent, nanomaterials, nanocrystalline chemicals, sol-gel processes, hydrothermal processes, hydroxides, carbonates, alkaline earth metal, EPA, RFA, Scientific Discipline, INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION, Sustainable Industry/Business, Sustainable Environment, Technology for Sustainable Environment, pollution prevention, Environmental Engineering, cleaner production, environmentally conscious manufacturing, environmental sustainability, nanotechnology, alternative materials, electronics industry, engineering, environmentally applicable nanoparticles, nanomaterials, nanocrystalline chemicals, electroceramic materials

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final
  • SBIR Phase II:

    Solvent-Free Production of Alkaline Earth Metal Titanates for Electronics Applications