NASA SBIR 2016 Solicitation
FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY
|PROPOSAL NUMBER:||16-2 S1.04-7518|
|PHASE 1 CONTRACT NUMBER:||NNX16CG51P|
|SUBTOPIC TITLE:||Detector Technologies for UV, X-Ray, Gamma-Ray and Cosmic-Ray Instruments|
|PROPOSAL TITLE:||A Silicon Carbide Foundry for NASA's UV and High Temperature CMOS Electronics Needs|
SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
CoolCAD Electronics, LLC
7101 Poplar Avenue
Takoma Park, MD 20912 - 4671
PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
7101 POPLAR AVE
TAKOMA PARK, MD 20912 - 4671
CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
7101 Poplar Avenue
Takoma Park, MD 20912 - 4671
Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Detector Technologies for UV, X-Ray, Gamma-Ray and Cosmic-Ray Instruments 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)
CoolCAD Electronics has developed a patent-pending technology to design and fabricate Silicon Carbide (SiC) MOSFET opto-electronic integrated circuits (ICs). We both fully design and fabricate these SiC Opto-Electronic ICs in the U.S. using our own design methodologies, SiC process recipes and in-house fabrication facility. We will design, fabricate and test SiC Extreme, Vacuum and Deep Ultraviolet photodetectors. We will prototype PN Junction and Schottky barrier linear photodiodes, as well as low dark count avalanche photodiodes. We will design and fabricate a two-dimensional 256 by 256 passive UV SiC focal plane array. Array elements will be fabricated in-house, out of both PN junction and Schottky barrier detectors, using CoolCAD's process and facilities. We will design and fabricate opto-electronic integrated circuits, where we will integrate various types of detectors with a MOS operational amplifier into a single IC to actively convert the photo current to usable voltage levels. We will also design and fabricate an integrated photodetector and 3-Transistor pixel for active readout. Multiple active pixel readout 3-T circuits will be an array to form a SiC active pixel MOS Deep UV imager. Our in-house fabrication process will also be upgraded. We will automate optical alignment to improve our microfabrication resolution and reduce minimum feature size. We will perform gate oxide anneals to improve carrier mobility. Improving mobility and reducing the minimum feature size will increase MOSFET performance and increase speed of opto-integrated circuits. Furthermore, SiC allows for optoelectronic operation at high temperatures. We will test our circuits up to 500C and utilize special metal contact stacks to enhance high temperature reliability. Finally, we will make our in-house process available to NASA and provide a process development kit for use of our fabrication facility to prototype new application specific SiC integrated circuits.
POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The work proposed is to develop optoelectronic hardware that is enabled by the nascent Wide Bandgap Semiconductor Silicon Carbide (SiC). The integration of electronics and UV photodiodes enhances detection capability. The applications are as follows: Spectroscopy: EUV, VUV, and Deep UV; UV Imaging that is blind to visible; and High Temperature electronics. We both design and fabricate our integrated optoelectronics in-house in the U.S. We will be offering fabrication facilities for NASA to prototype new SiC application specific circuits, which could meet many of the needs for SiC circuit fabrication. The results of the proposed R&D on integrated EUV, VUV, deep UV detectors and imagers should be helpful in numerous NASA endeavors especially those in: Heliophysics, Planetary and Earth science, as well as monitoring ozone and atmospheric gases, and could find substantial application in hyperspectral sensing. The Jupiter-Europa Orbiter is expected to have sensing requirements in the 70 to 330nm region, which could utilize the integrated optoelectonics produced by the proposed program. This multi-band capability may find application in numerous NASA programs including the: Large UV/Visible/IR Surveyor Mission; Exoplanet Direct Imaging Mission; Living with a Star: Geospace Dynamics Constellation; Explorer Missions; Small and Light payload systems like CubeSats, and the Venus Mission since our SiC based sensors and electronics are expected to withstand temperatures as high as 500C.
POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
There are numerous Non-NASA commercial applications to the SiC based Deep UV integrated technology that we are developing, with significant market value. These applications include:
-Water and Air Purification: Our detectors operate in the region used to kill harmful bacteria and viruses to ensure UV filtration of drinking water is operating properly.
-Oil and Gas Logging: High temperature hostile environment used with a scintillator for gamma ray detection to characterize shale formation.
-Geo Thermal Energy: High temperature environment used to explore rock information.
-Military - Missile Detection: Rocket plumes for early warning systems that will not get confused by visible light since our UV detectors are mainly transparent to wavelengths greater than 400nm.
-Food Contamination: Many contaminants can emit in the deep UV after excitation thus exposing possible pathogens and contaminants.
-Non Line of Sight Communication since UV is diffusive so it will move around obstacles, and can be modulated to transmit information beyond obstructions.
-Fire Detection: Most fires emit IR and deep UV; detectors that can sense both are safer to use.
-Semiconductor Instrumentation and Advanced Spectrometers: Semiconductor lithography typically uses 193nm in fabrication, UV sensors can help guide this process.
-High Temperature Electronics: Monitoring automobile exhaust, jet and rocket engines, furnaces and ovens.
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)
Detectors (see also Sensors)
Microfabrication (and smaller; see also Electronics; Mechanical Systems; Photonics)
Models & Simulations (see also Testing & Evaluation)
Optical/Photonic (see also Photonics)