Defense Advanced Research Projects AgencyTagged Content List

Transformative Materials

Relating to new or improved properties in materials

Showing 48 results for Materials + Manufacturing RSS
The general-purpose computer has remained the dominant computing architecture for the last 50 years, driven largely by the relentless pace of Moore’s Law. As this trajectory shows signs of slowing, however, it has become increasingly more challenging to achieve performance gains from generalized hardware, setting the stage for a resurgence in specialized architectures. Today’s specialized, application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs) — hardware customized for a specific application — offer limited flexibility and are costly to design, fabricate, and program.
Materials with superior strength, density and resiliency properties are important for the harsh environments in which Department of Defense platforms, weapons and their components operate. Recent scientific advances have opened up new possibilities for material design in the ultrahigh pressure regime (up to three million times higher than atmospheric pressure). Materials formed under ultrahigh pressure, known as extended solids, exhibit dramatic changes in physical, mechanical and functional properties and may offer significant improvements to armor, electronics, propulsion and munitions systems in any aerospace, ground or naval platform.
Next-generation intelligent systems supporting Department of Defense (DoD) applications like artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, shared spectrum communication, electronic warfare, and radar require processing efficiency that is orders of magnitude beyond what is available through current commercial electronics. Reaching the performance levels required by these DoD applications however will require developing highly complex system-on-chip (SoC) platforms that leverage the most advanced integrated circuit technologies.
Due to engineering limitations and cost constraints, the dynamics of the electronic industry are continually changing. Commercial companies increasingly recognize the need to differentiate their products through research in areas other than device scaling, such as new circuit architectures and computing algorithms.
A substantial portion of the Department of Defense (DoD) budget is spent on training personnel to maintain highly complex electromechanical systems, often in austere environments where long logistical supply chains challenge the ability to obtain spare parts in a timely manner. Today’s DoD deploys some machine shops and other fabrication capabilities in-theater, but these facilities provide only a small fraction of needed components. This is largely due to limited access to the adaptive manufacturing technology and comprehensive design expertise necessary for in-theater manufacturing.