NSRI, UNL Receive Follow-on Contract from Army Research Laboratory

June 17, 2016

The National Strategic Research Institute (NSRI) at the University of Nebraska recently received a contract to further research for the U.S. Amy Research Laboratory (ARL).  The NSRI, a University Affiliated Research Center (UARC) is one of 13 established UARC’s across the nation, delivering relevant and timely research solutions directly impacting Department of Defense (DOD) operations and national security.

The ARL research contract requests Dr. Mehrdad Negahban, Mechanical and Materials Engineering Professor and US-Director of the Advanced Mechanics and Materials Engineering International Laboratory (AMME-International) at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) to continue efforts in polymer research, over the course of nine months.  Polymers, another term for plastics, are used in many advanced applications from medical implants to bulletproof glass.  

The goal of the ongoing research is to develop more advanced models of glassy polymers and implement them into a general-purpose analysis tool.  Efforts from the contract will produce new developments and analyses of tools that allow the ARL to design better protective transparencies, such as bulletproof windows and helmet shields.  The research has both commercial and military applications.  

The military applications are focused on providing simulation capabilities to better protect the warfighter.  Research results will allow the ARL to better design transparent protective armor, using more accurate simulation tools.  Through the contract with the NSRI at the University of Nebraska, ARL is able to leverage academic expertise needed to develop the best technologies in order to keep soldiers and emergency responders safe.

“We are trying to develop more accurate numerical models for the response of structural polymers and to incorporate them into design tools so that the researchers and designers at ARL and other government laboratories have access to the most advanced design and analysis tools for building protective transparencies. It is a privilege to work with ARL to help protect our troops,” said Negahban.  

The ARL of the U.S. Army Research Development and Engineering Command (RDECOM) is the Army's corporate, or central, laboratory.  The Army relies on ARL to provide the critical links between the scientific and military communities.  The follow-on contract will build on a project that Dr. Negahban and his UNL team completed for the ARL in 2013-14.  

About NSRI
Founded in 2012, the National Strategic Research Institute (NSRI) at the University of Nebraska is the only University Affiliated Research Center (UARC) in the country dedicated to delivering solutions for Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD) to U.S. Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) and across other federal agencies. NSRI provides research and development for the U.S. Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, and other governmental agencies in multiple mission-critical competency areas — including development of medical countermeasures to WMD; nuclear detection and forensics; consequence management; chemical and biological weapons detection; and space, cyber, and telecom law. Learn more at nsri.nebraska.edu