NASA SBIR 2004 Solicitation


SUBTOPIC TITLE:Mars and Deep Space Telecommunications
PROPOSAL TITLE:Highly Sensitive Photon Counting Detectors for Deep Space Optical Communications

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Amplification Technologies, Inc.
1404 Coney Island Avenue
Brooklyn ,NY 11230 - 4120
(718) 951 - 3606

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Alexander V Krutov
1404 Coney Island Avenue
Brooklyn, NY  11230 -4120
(609) 638 - 5380

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
This project will focus on fabricating and optimizing a photodetector that utilizes the emerging technology of internal discrete amplification to create photon-counting sensitivity detectors with very high gain, ultra low noise, high quantum efficiency and GHz bandwidth for optical communications in the spectral range of 1.06 ?m to 1.6 ?m. Extensive modeling during Phase I of this project has permitted to optimize the design and develop manufacturing steps to produce such a photodetector. The detectors will have performance parameters significantly superior to those of conventional avalanche photodiodes and photomultiplier tubes to and should meet and exceed NASA stated mission goals of boosting data transfer rates by a factor of 10-100 relative to the current state of the art. The expected performance parameters include a GHz bandwidth (with a 10 GHz long term goal), gain of 10,000 to 100,000, excess noise factor less than 1.07, saturation levels greater than 50Mcounts/s (higher expected), and flexibility in the choice of active area size and shape, including the ability to create detector arrays. These new capabilities could lead to important advances in deep space and other optical communication applications.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed detector has the potential to become the detector of choice for such NASA applications as optical communication technologies for deep space to ground communication links, intersatellite links, Earth orbiting to ground, networking formation flying spacecraft, and several others. All of these applications currently lack an adequate detector that would fully meet application requirements. The new capabilities enabled by the detector could significantly expand the use of optical communication solutions. In addition, with some modifications the proposed detector could be utilized for LIDAR remote sensing at telecommunications wavelengths.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
In addition to deep space optical communications, the detectors could be modified for use in traditional fiber optical communications at 1.5 um. Because of better performance parameters, they could, for example, replace such current solutions as InGaAs avalanche photodiodes used in fiber optical telecommunications. This represents a very significant commercial market. They could also find use in commercial LIDAR applications.

Form Printed on 08-01-05 13:52