Testing of a Compact Solid-State Switch for Fast Marx Generators

Period of Performance: 09/19/2002 - 09/18/2004


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Optiswitch Technology Corp.
6355 Nancy Ridge Drive
San Diego, CA 92121
Principal Investigator


In the Phase I SBIR program OptiSwitch Technology Corporation (OTC) demonstrated that an advanced solid-state switch composed of a purely optically triggered switch and a purely electrically triggered switch can replace the rail gap switch in DTRA's Fast Marx Generator (FMG). Being solid-state it will have longer life, higher reliability, higher reprate and lower cost of ownership than the rail gap switch. The advanced switch utilizes a proprietary combination of a light activated switch and an advanced thyristor. To achieve superior switching performance the advanced thyristor incorporates a proprietary diffusion profile that can be constructed using standard integrated circuit processing techniques. This allows the thyristor to be fabricated at numerous foundries using reproducible processes and at a low cost. Arrays of these switches will be necessary for the higher power pulsed systems. Light triggering with its associated low jitter will simplify the triggering of these arrays. In the Phase II program OTC will conduct a credible scalable demonstration of the switch to verify the predicated performance. The Phase II program will be conducted in three independent phases each demonstrating one key aspect of the switching technology.