Research Project Information

Research Project Summary Information

SiC Fiber Laser Printing Process Improvement(28238)

Free Form Fibers, LLC


Free Form Fibers' (FFF) process makes Silicon Carbide (SiC) from a mix of Silane (SiH4), hydrocarbon, and H2 gases (collectively “Precursor Gases” or “Precursors”). Silane is the precursor of choice for anything containing Silicon (“Si”). In FFF’s process, SiH4 is introduced into a reaction chamber where the molecules are coaxed into breaking apart and depositing Si-based compounds. Currently, both are single pass processes in that precursors flow through the chamber only once and the unused fraction is destroyed for safe disposal. Although FFF’s process is 10 to 100 times more efficient at converting precursors into SiC fibers than its competitors are at converting them into SiC thin films, the vast majority of the SiH4 still goes to waste.

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Project Description

The project will supplement ongoing efforts funded by a National Science Foundation Small Business Innovation Research Phase II award to develop a recycling system that will collect exhausts from the reactor and recover the silane along with hydrocarbon precursors using well-established H2 membrane technology. The recycling system will be evaluated in continuous production mode. Energy usage, recycling, and fresh precursor will be monitored and related to fiber characteristics.


The main anticipated outcome of the proposed NYSERDA project is that FFF will have overcome the last technical hurdle on its way to mass manufacturing. Other benefits include energy savings of 257 MWh/lb per lb of SiC fiber produced and a reduction of greenhouse gas emission by a factor 49 over competing SiC fiber fabrication, assuming 50% recycling of New York-made silane.

Project Results


Free Form Fibers, LLC
10 Cady Hill Blvd
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Principle Investigator

Joseph Pegna

Universities Involved


Project Type:

On-site Process Improvement

Technologies Types:

Advanced Materials

NYSERDA Contact Information

Miriam Pye


R&D - Mfg Tech & On-Site Pwr

Contract Details

Start Date: 10/17/2012
Project Status: Active
Contract Number: 28238

Last Updated: 9/8/2014 9