Optical Multiple Target Surveillance Pointing Acquisition Andtracking Sensors

Period of Performance: 06/15/1988 - 08/09/1990

$427K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

E-tek Dynamics, Inc.
P.O. BOX 1003
Melbourne, FL 32901
Principal Investigator

Abstract

FOR THE SPACE-BASED STRATEGIC DEFENSE SYSTEM, CONVENTIONAL OPTICAL BEAM POINTING/STEERING/TRACKING SYSTEM USING MECHAICAL GIMBALS HAS NUMEROUS SHORTCOMINGS SUCH AS HEAVY WEIGHT, HIGH PROBABILITY OF ERRORS, LONG ACQUISITION TIME, AND LARGE FRICTIONAL AND BEARING NOISE. THE CONVENTIONAL MECHANICAL SERVO CANNOT TRACK MULTIPLE TARGETS SIMULTANEOUSLY AND CANNOT PERFORM WIDE ANGLE SURVEILLANCE DUE TO LIMITED BANDWIDTH OF SERVO LOOPS. TO REDUCE OR ELIMINATE THESE SHORTCOMINGS, MULTIAPERTURE COMPOUND EYE CONFIGURATIONS AND ADAPTIVE OPTICAL MULTIBEAM PHASED STEERING ARRAYS FOR MULTIPLE TARGETS SURVEILLANCE, POINTING, ACQUISITION, AND TRACKING WERE INVESTIGATED, ANALYZED AND COMPARED AGAINST DERIVED DESIGN PARAMETERS IN THE PREVIOUS RESEARCH PHASE. IN THE CURRENT EFFORT, 1 X 6 AND 2 X 3 CURVED PHASED-ARRAYS USING LiNbO3 OR GaAs INTEGRATED PHASE SHIFTERS ARE BEING CONSTRUCTED AND EVALUATED. OPTICAL INJECTION-LOCKING IS BEING EMPLOYED TO SYNCHRONIZE THE ARRAYED LASERS TO A MASTER LASER. ANTICIPATED BENEFITS INCLUDE OPTICAL POWER COMBINING, LASER BEAM SHARPENING, RAPID BEAM STEERING, COHERENT COMMUNICATIONS AND OPTICAL RADAR. APPLICATIONS EXIST IN OPTICAL SIGNAL PROCESSING/COMPUTING, FIBER OPTICS, CARDIOVASCULAR TREATMENT AND MICROSURGERY.