NASA SBIR 2008 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 08-1 S1.05-8508
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Detector Technologies for UV, X-Ray, Gamma-Ray and Cosmic-Ray Instruments
PROPOSAL TITLE: Novel Single Photon Counting Readout Circuits and APD Arrays with capability from UV to IR

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Epitaxial Technologies, LLC
1450 South Rolling Road
Baltimore, MD 21045 - 3863
(410) 455-5594

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Leye Aina
1450 South Rolling Road
Baltimore, MD 21045 - 3863
(410) 455-5594

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 2 to 3

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
The overall goal of the proposed Phase I SBIR project is to develop and demonstrate 256x256 segmented readout integrated circuits (ROICs) that can read, digitize and count the response of linear-mode single photon counting avalanche photodiode (APD) pixels with picosecond readout capability and bandwidth at least an order of magnitude better than currently available ROICs. We will accomplish this by designing an ultrahigh speed front-end amplifier for an existing ROIC architecture that will be capable of low noise, wideband amplification of picosecond photocurrent pulses induced by single photons in the APD. In Phase I of this project, we will design, model and simulate the performance of higher speed ROIC analog front ends that will enable readout speed enhancement by as much as a factor of 10 compared to the performance of existing ROICs. In Phase II, we will design, fabricate and test 256 x 256 ultra-high speed ROICs and 256 x 256 linear-mode APD arrays.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed technology will advance the space science technology development program of
NASA and make available new space technologies to enable and enhance exploration and
expand our knowledge of the universe. Further, the innovative technology will have numerous
important NASA applications, such as:

· Lidar for NASA robotic landing systems (lunar & Mars)
· Astrophysics and molecular spectroscopy of astronomical objects
· Picosecond spectroscopy of weak fluorescence from biomaterials (molecular imaging, etc)
· Laser radar of distant targets
· Inter-satellite communications and free space laser communication
· Earth remote sensing to survey crops, forest foliage, and natural resources etc.
· Measurement of the spatial and temporal variation of water and clouds for atmospheric research;

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Non-NASA and commercial applications for the proposed ROIC and APD arrays include:
· Airborne 3-D imaging LADAR transmitter/sensor (and sophisticated image processing) to penetrate dense trees and camouflage in order to detect, identify, and characterize targets on the battlefield such as tanks and armored personnel carriers.
· Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle (EKV) seekers: uses three passive sensors (one visible and two infrared (IR)) for acquisition, tracking, limited discrimination, and aim point selection in the terminal homing phase.
· Passive imaging camera with the capability of generating real-time displays of imaging scene. The FPAs of such cameras can be fabricated in high volume and at low cost;
· Commercial detectors operating in the 1.1mm-1.5mm wavelength range are widely used for fiber optic communications.
· Ultra-sensitive detectors and receivers for free space communication;

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Optical & Photonic Materials
Semi-Conductors/Solid State Device Materials
Sensor Webs/Distributed Sensors
Telemetry, Tracking and Control

Form Generated on 11-24-08 11:56