AP Materials, Inc. (APM) has been awarded a Phase I Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract from the U.S. Missile Defense Agency for the development of nanoscale aluminum powders for use in advanced propulsion systems. The award will support APM's continuing development of the powders, which may improve the performance of missile and space vehicle launches by providing for additional payload or by enabling the production of smaller systems. "This award will permit us to build upon our strong technology base and develop products that are beneficial to both military and commercial customers," said Douglas P. DuFaux, vice president of operations and manager of the aluminum development project. "The nanoscale aluminum being developed by AP Materials is expected to enhance the performance of advanced missile and space launch systems, and this funding is a large step toward realizing that goal." The company has developed a unique production technology that combines industry standard chemistry with industry standard production processes to provide high-performance nanoscale materials at competitive prices.