NASA SBIR 2010 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 10-2 A1.04-9528
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Aviation External Hazard Sensor Technologies
PROPOSAL TITLE: Multifunction Lidar for Air Data and Kinetic Air Hazard Measurement

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Ophir Corp
10184 West Belleview Avenue, Suite 200
Littleton, CO 80127 - 1762
(303) 933-2200

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Loren M Caldwell
10184 West Belleview Ave., Suite 200
Littleton, CO 80127 - 1762
(303) 933-2200

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 3
End: 5

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Ophir's Phase I research was highly successful and all contract objectives and tasks were successfully completed. In Phase II, Ophir proposes to continue this important research by developing and flight testing a multifunction, low-cost, laser radar capable of enhancing aviation safety by accurately measuring kinetic air hazards, providing supplemental air data, and enhancing ride comfort. The innovation is providing a single, cost-effective sensor that has multiple-use functionality, in a package that is easily integrated onto commercial aircraft. Conventional air data systems provide critical information to the aircraft for safe flight, but there are vulnerabilities, as evidenced by the recent Air France accident. A more robust air data system for flight controls on aircraft is needed - particularly to measure airspeed in icing and severe weather conditions. This proposed sensor also detects and quantifies kinetic air hazards which impact the safety of air traffic; enhances ride comfort while reducing airframe fatigue; decreases fuel consumption, and reduces the frequency and severity of encounters with turbulent events. Building upon the Phase I design and performance trade studies, Phase II will finalize the prototype design, assemble the working prototype, perform Proof-of-Capability laboratory testing, package the prototype for flight testing and demonstrate the multifunction lidar technology in a representative flight environment (TRL 5).

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Airspace transformation to NextGen may be significantly safer by providing additional information for kinetic air hazard detection. NASA has pioneered many innovations and improvements for wind hazard detection, warning and forecasting. This innovation enables this airspace transformation by providing wind hazard measurement and resulting real-time information for air traffic operations. This innovation will not only increase in-safety flight, but also may impact the volume of traffic able to traverse the continent due to the provision of resultant weather warnings. Also, safety of the air traffic system will be improved with the provision of a supplemental air data system on commercial aircraft. NASA has shown the utility of lidar wind and air data measurements over the years, however, the systems have been quite cumbersome. Ophir solves this challenge by providing a supplemental air data system and a dual-use kinetic air hazard monitoring system in a small size, weight and power consumption package, as well as at a low cost.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The Non-NASA commercial applications for this multifunction lidar include commercial aircraft manufacturers, manned and unmanned military aircraft developers, and manufacturers of conventional air data probes. The regional jet market and the Air Force aircraft developers may also benefit from the air data measurement capability of this lidar for new aircraft flight testing and calibration. The commercial markets have been reticent to adopt an optical air data sensor due to the size, weight and power consumption factors, as well as, the single function nature of the sensor. But, the ability to condense the sensor and offer multimode operation enables the market acceptance and ultimate sensor commercialization.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING (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.)
Analytical Instruments (Solid, Liquid, Gas, Plasma, Energy; see also Sensors)
Avionics (see also Control and Monitoring)
Detectors (see also Sensors)
Lasers (Ladar/Lidar)
Optical/Photonic (see also Photonics)

Form Generated on 12-15-11 17:36