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Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Tech Transfer

Non-Mechanical Beam Steering for Entry, Descent and Landing Sensors

Completed Technology Project

Project Description

Non-mechanical Beam Steering for Entry, Descent and Landing Sensors, Phase I
Boulder Nonlinear Systems (BNS) and University of Dayton (UD) will team on development of a non-mechanical beam steering (NMBS) subsystem for Entry, Descent and Landing (EDL) sensors. BNS will improve their current polarization grating (PG) technology which is capable of switching well over the +- 25 degree requirement called for in the solicitation. Advances to the PG technology specific to the NASA EDL application will include improved throughput, and significant weight reduction by combining components and drastically reducing substrate thicknesses. In addition BNS and UD will develop an environmental test plan tailored to an EDL mission. The PG technology is a coarse steering technology and a NMBS system employing it would be improved by adding fine angle continuous steering capability. UD will leverage its Electro-optic (EO) Crystal center and investigate continuous fine steering based on EO crystals. In addition UD will also tap into its LADAR expertise at the LADAR and Optical Communications Institute (LOCI) to provide systems level analysis to design a NMBS prototype which will be built in Phase II. More »

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