Tetramer has been awarded a DOE Phase II Grant (DE-FG02-12ER90414) to develop nanocomposite coating technologies. There is a need within the Global Safeguards community for tamper-indicating coatings of varying complexity for use in the verification and authentication of nuclear security documents, materials, and equipment; however, current commercial coatings for anti-tampering seals lack the sophistication necessary for quick, accurate, and reliable tamper detection. Tetramer has developed a proprietary family of coating technologies that will be used to optimize advanced coatings for tamper-indicating seals currently in development at the National Laboratories. During Phase I Tetramer demonstrated a chemically and mechanically robust coating which was optically clear and strongly luminescent. In Phase II, Tetramer will continue the optimization of the coating and develop a semi-automated coating system which is capable of producing coatings with an increased level of complexity in their spectral signatures for tamper-indicating seals using a variety of active nanomaterials. In addition, Tetramer will develop prototype designs and methods for characterizing advanced spectral signals in order to authenticate legitimate seals from tampered seals.
The work performed in Phase II and Phase III will allow for any device to be coated with sophisticated films having a range of properties which can be varied by tailoring the molecular architecture of the coating. This technology will improve security in all areas where tamper-indication and /or authentication is required. In the commercial sector this technology would have significant competitive advantages in the large anti-counterfeiting market.