USA: PNNL Honored for SAMMS


Scientists at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory were recently honored for their new nano-technology that makes the air quality better for sailors on Navy submarines.

The new technology is called SAMMS. It cleans the air in tight Navy submarine spaces by absorbing CO2. The material looks like rock salt and will replace a liquid that’s been doing the CO2 removal job for fifty years. SAMMS will go into a type of ventilation system inside submarines to clean the air more efficiently. SAMMS inventor, Glen Fryxell, says the material is like a honeycomb that soaks up all the CO2 out of the air.

“When air that is loaded with CO2 comes through that honeycomb the CO2 sticks, kind of like a molecular fly paper,” says Fryxell.

The CO2 can be stored there indefinitely, protecting the environment, or it can be released through temperature and pressure if need be. The current liquid system used by the Navy makes breathing difficult and smells awful.

The SAMMS compound is on track to be put into U.S. Navy submarines in 2014. Scientists are finding the technology could be used in many types of vehicles and could also protect our country from potential threatening situations.

“Underwater type application, any space type application or any application where you have a confined space and compromised breathable air supply outside that confined space. Any chemical or biological warfare type scenario,” says Ken Rappe.

Five Hundred pounds of the SAMMS material will be put on a submarine and can clean the air for over one hundred sailors.


Naval Today Staff , May 17, 2012