Agentase to receive contract from DARPA for PPE coating

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency recently announced plans to award a sole source contract to Agentase LLC, a subsidiary of FLIR Systems, for a project to develop novel coatings that neutralize nerve agents.

The agent-exposure surveillance and protection integrated suits project seeks to provide coatings that deliver colorimetric detection methods in both visible and near infrared that respond to sub-microgram exposure to V- and G-series nerve agents. The coatings would be integrated into personal protective equipment, Global Biodefense reports.

The novel coatings would also hydrolyze nerve agents on PPE to reduce or eliminate the contact hazard presented to personnel when removing PPE.

The DARPA contract will leverage Agentase's recent advances in enzymatic detection technologies and complementary research in support of DARPA's in vivo nanoplatforms program. Agentase's other contract with DARPA seeks to develop new classes of adaptable nanoparticles for unobtrusive, distributed, persistent physiologic and environmental sensing and the treatment of illness, infectious disease and physiologic abnormalities, according to Global Biodefense.

The ASPIS project seeks to develop prototype self-decontaminating and self-disclosing coating technologies to warfighters that will increase the protective value of PPE in the next 15 months.

FLIR Systems previously demonstrated technologies to reveal agent exposure at the sub-microgram level and develop stable coatings with operational lifetimes greater than two months under various environmental conditions, Global Biodefense reports.