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Research Spending & Results

Award Detail

Awardee:WORKERS FIRST LLC
Doing Business As Name:WORKERS FIRST LLC
PD/PI:
  • Matthew J Borowiak
  • (716) 480-4326
  • workersfirstmjb@gmail.com
Award Date:07/29/2021
Estimated Total Award Amount: $ 256,000
Funds Obligated to Date: $ 256,000
  • FY 2021=$256,000
Start Date:08/01/2021
End Date:07/31/2022
Transaction Type:Grant
Agency:NSF
Awarding Agency Code:4900
Funding Agency Code:4900
CFDA Number:47.041
Primary Program Source:040100 NSF RESEARCH & RELATED ACTIVIT
Award Title or Description:SBIR Phase I: Designer polyamide for acid neutralizing personal protective equipment
Federal Award ID Number:2051796
DUNS ID:117477217
Program:SBIR Phase I
Program Officer:
  • Rajesh Mehta
  • (703) 292-2174
  • rmehta@nsf.gov

Awardee Location

Street:1376 HERMAN ST
City:PITTSBURGH
State:PA
ZIP:15212-4321
County:Pittsburgh
Country:US
Awardee Cong. District:18

Primary Place of Performance

Organization Name:Workers First
Street:91 43rd st
City:Pittsburgh
State:PA
ZIP:15201-3150
County:Pittsburgh
Country:US
Cong. District:18

Abstract at Time of Award

The broader impact/commercial potential of this Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project is to reduce hazardous acid-related injuries of workers who use Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in mining, the military, first responder service, and other roles. Affected PPE surfaces can still contain the non-diluted acid which may come in contact with skin, leading to injury or disfigurement. This project proposes a new material for the surface of PPE to be chemically reactive so that it can neutralize the hazardous acid on contact. This material may be used as an additive to other materials for chemical suits, lab coats, gloves, secondary containment, and protective coatings. Moreover, this surface can be repeatedly reactivated, enabling sustainability. This SBIR Phase I project will advance translation of a solvent-less reactive extrusion. Currently available polymeric and the coatings on the materials that contain the acids act merely as chemically resistant passive barriers and are inadequate. The proposed project conducts a standardized set of experiments to optimize the temporal temperature profile, minimize undesired side reactions, and maximize the throughput. The technical plan includes determination of various parameters to tune product properties. Furthermore, it will be blended as an additive to incumbent PPE polymers to evaluate efficacy. This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

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