May 9, 2012 | last updated June 1, 2012 2:25 pm

CT firm eyes potential from Army air-filter award

Precision Combustion Inc. in New Haven won an Army research-innovation contract to devise an air-filter system compact but powerful enough to shield a building and its occupants against airborne toxins.

PCI didn't reveal Wednesday the amount of the Army's small business innovation research Phase I award.

The state's technology investment arm, Connecticut Innovations Inc., also is chipping in an unspecified matching grant, authorities said.

According to PCI, the Army wants a modular device that can be fitted onto a building's existing heating, ventilation and air conditioning unit. The device would incorporate air-filtering technology PCI developed for use aboard NASA spacecraft and the orbiting space station, authorities said.

Phase I involves devising a bench-scale prototype of the filter module, said PCI principal project investigator Christian Junaedi.

According to PCI President Kevin Burns, the eventual hope is that if the unit works well enough to suit the Army's needs, it can be marketed commercially as an add-on for new and existing HVAC systems.

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