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Ilmenite as Dual-Use MaterialThis paper addresses the subject of dual-use space technology transfer of a novel, non-traditional material termed ilmenite, found in a large percentage in the moon rocks brought back by NASA's APOLLO missions. The paper is somewhat premature in the sense that though the material as a mineral has been known for a long time, very little is known about pure single crystal ilmenite and hence few applications have been demonstrated. Yet, in another sense, it is very timely due to the fact that ilmenite promises to be a very interesting competition to silicon, silicon carbide and other compound semiconductors, especially those that are employed in high power, high temperature and large data storage/retrieval applications. It seems to be an excellent example of a small investment-high return situation. While some of the applications of this material - for production of oxygen, for instance - have been well-known, electronic applications have received relatively little attention. One reason for this was the fact that growth of single crystal ilmenite requires precise process conditions and parameters. We believe for the first time these have been determined in the Center for Electronic Materials, Texas A&M University. The work being done at Texas A&M University and Prairie View A&M University (supported by Battelle Pacific Northwest Laboratories and the Center for Space Power) indicates the excellent potential this material has in space as well as in terrestrial applications. To mention a few: as a wide band gap semiconductor it has applications in high temperature, high power situations, especially when heat dissipation is a problem such as may occur in the Space Station; the possibility of this material radiating in the blue region, it has immense applications in optoelectronics; as a material with a high density of highly directional d-bands, it lends itself to novel processing conditions and perhaps even to 'tunability' of physical parameters; as a potential scintillating material, it has possible applications as a sensor in waste management; as an oxygen sensor it has possible applications in automotive electronics; and as a radiation resistant material, it has obvious applications in the space environment. Results - experimental and theoretical - obtained so far in our laboratories will be reported with particular emphasis on the transfer of technology involving this fascinating material.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Kumar, A. A.
(Prairie View Agricultural and Mechanical Coll. TX United States)
Pandey, R. K.
(Texas A&M Univ. College Station, TX United States)
Fogarty, T. N.
(Prairie View Agricultural and Mechanical Coll. TX United States)
Wilkins, R.
(Prairie View Agricultural and Mechanical Coll. TX United States)
Date Acquired
August 17, 2013
Publication Date
May 1, 1994
Publication Information
Publication: Dual-Use Space Technology Transfer Conference and Exhibition
Volume: 1
Subject Category
Composite Materials
Accession Number
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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