NASA SBIR 2014 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 14-1 S4.04-9709
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Extreme Environments Technology
PROPOSAL TITLE: Radiation-Hardening of Best-In-Class SiGe Mixed-Signal and RF Electronics for Ultra-Wide Temperature Range

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
CFD Research Corporation
701 McMillian Way Notrhwest, S
Huntsville, AL 35806 - 2923
(256) 726-4800

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Ashok Raman
701 McMillian Way NW, Suite D
Huntsville, AL 35806 - 2923
(256) 726-4800

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Silvia Harvey
701 McMillian Way NW, Suite D
Huntsville, AL 35806 - 2923
(256) 726-4858

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 2
End: 4

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Extreme Environments Technology is a Technology Available (TAV) subtopic that includes NASA Intellectual Property (IP). Do you plan to use the NASA IP under the award?

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Innovative, reliable, low-power, and low-noise electronics that can operate over a wide temperature range and high radiation are critical for future NASA missions. This project will design, develop, and demonstrate novel Radiation Hardened By Design (RHBD) analog/mixed-signal and RF integrated circuits (ICs) implemented in the latest, best-in-class silicon germanium (SiGe) BiCMOS technology, for operation in extreme environments without bulky and power inefficient shielding and heating/cooling infrastructure.

SiGe is a robust IC technology with superior electronic properties, design flexibility, and resilience to harsh environments. High yield and moderate cost of Si fabrication dramatically reduce mission size-weight-and-power and cost (SWaP-C). IBM's 90-nm state-of-the-art 9HP SiGe BiCMOS platform delivers higher performance and lower power, and enables highly integrated (sub-) millimeter wave applications not possible with earlier 180-nm or 130-nm nodes. It is therefore, a prime candidate for designing future mixed-signal/RF electronics for NASA. Currently, however, there are few wide-temperature/radiation data and models, and no radiation/wide-temperature tolerant circuits in this platform. Advanced Computer Aided Design (CAD) tools are also essential for in-depth analysis to optimize design, predict behavior, and assess performance of 9HP-based electronics.

CFDRC and Georgia Tech will perform laser-based and heavy ion irradiation testing on the newest generation 9HP SiGe HBT devices and circuits, and develop new models and upgraded CAD tools. The wide-temperature/radiation experimental data will help validate the models and understand associated failure mechanisms. This new knowledge, data, and upgraded CAD tools will be used in Phase II for development and optimization of novel RHBD mixed-signal/RF circuits and systems, which will be fabricated in the IBM 9HP SiGe process, extensively tested at low temperatures and radiation, and delivered to NASA.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Radiation-hardened and wide-temperature mixed-signal/RF electronics development is aligned, per NASA OCT Technology Area TA08, with the major flight programs within the Planetary Science Division: Discovery, New Frontiers, Lunar Quest, Mars Exploration, Outer Planets Programs, and Europa Jupiter System Mission. Components based on state-of-the-art, 90-nm SiGe technology will help reduce the volume, mass, and power requirements of instrument electronics, essential to maximizing the science return for future missions. Electronics technology capable of operating in extreme environments will enable science missions currently thought to be impractical due to the requirement of bulky protective housing. Electronic parts are getting smaller with technology evolution and the radiation/temperature effects are becoming more severe. A robust physics-based capability to predict the behavior of electronic circuits increases mission confidence. Radiation-hardened and wide-temperature analog, mixed-signal, RF and digital circuits are essential for ALL avionic systems used in NASA exploration projects. The RHBD designs from this project will add to the NASA "components library". The physics-based mixed-mode tools will help NASA better evaluate the wide-temperature performance and radiation response at an early stage, and design rad-hard low-temperature electronics with better understanding and control of design margins, thereby reducing the test time and cost.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Various critical analog, mixed-signal, RF, and digital circuits are used in all space-based platforms, including DoD space systems (communication, surveillance, ballistic missiles, missile defense), and commercial satellites. Since modern electronics technologies and components are becoming increasingly sensitive to extreme environments, the capability to predict their behavior can dramatically increase mission confidence and reduce risk. The new RHBD designs and circuit/cell libraries, based on the best-in-class SiGe technology, offer reduced size-weight-and-power and cost (SWaP-C) to all aerospace applications. The physics-based computer aided design (CAD) tools can also be applied to cryogenic electronics for high-sensitivity, low-noise analog and mixed-signal applications, such as metrology, infrared (IR) imagers, sensors (radiation, optical, X-ray), radiometrology, precision instruments, radio and optical astronomy, infrared and photon detectors, and other high-end systems. For all such devices and systems, predictive and accurate modeling and design tools reduce the amount of required radiation/temperature testing, thus decreasing their cost, and time to market or field application.

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.)
Circuits (including ICs; for specific applications, see e.g., Communications, Networking & Signal Transport; Control & Monitoring, Sensors)
Models & Simulations (see also Testing & Evaluation)
Simulation & Modeling
Software Tools (Analysis, Design)
Verification/Validation Tools

Form Generated on 04-23-14 17:37