Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Air Force | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2015
ABSTRACT:Aret proposes a high performance laser radar system based on COTS components that can classify identify airborne threats at ranges of 100s of km. Based on our Coded Aperture Ladar technology, sub-diffraction limited images are resolved at extreme ranges using tomographic target reconstruction. This Phase 1 program models and demonstrates enhancements to our transceiver technology increasing range while decreasing detectability. A partnership with a prime contractor leverages airborne test platforms for field demonstrations in future phases.BENEFIT:The ladar concepts and hardware developed in this program have a wide range of relatively near-term and potentially low-cost military (tactical, theater and strategic) and other (surveillance/homeland security) applications. Tactical and surveillance adaptations would be the largest potential near-term markets. We believe that our approach could be readily and cost effectively adapted to fielding of compact laser radars, coded covert (free-space-optics) line-of-sight communications and covert laser designators and serve as high-accuracy optical trackers for engaging tactical (rockets, mortars and artillery-RAM) targets; RAMs are currently major threats to the US and its allies in the context of theater and urban warfare.
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Navy | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.71M | Year: 2014
Arete Associates has developed a compact lightweight lidar system for precision bathymetry and topography suitable for operation from a small tactical unmanned aerial vehicle. The subject of this Phase 2 SBIR is to adapt this existing system to perform submarine detection, classification, and localization. System adaptations include hardware upgrades to optimize ASW performance, implementation of optimal submarine detection algorithms into an on-board real-time processing system, and direct demonstration of the ASW capability by open ocean flights over representative submarine targets. Arete Associates has participated in virtually every program in airborne lidar for ocean remote sensing since the mid-1980s, and is the leading developer of blue-green lidar systems for the US Navy for mine detection applications such as the Airborne Laser Mine Detection System (ALMDS). By leveraging the operational experience with ASW lidar systems, the engineering expertise with airborne mine countermeasure systems, and the innovative designs of the compact lightweight bathymetric lidar, this SBIR provides an outstanding opportunity for the direct demonstration of the utility of a small compact lidar for real-time submarine detection and classification.
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Office for Chemical and Biological Defense | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.59M | Year: 2014
Raman spectroscopy is well suited for detecting trace surface contaminants that may indicate the presence of explosives, harmful chemical or biological agents, illicit drugs, or specific combinations of indicator chemicals used in processing nuclear materials. An example mobile Raman spectroscopy system is the vehicle mounted Joint Contaminated Surface Detector (JCSD), which uses a gaseous KrF excimer laser operating at 248 nm as the pump source; but the laser used presently in the JCSD presents significant logistical problems. The goal of this effort is to develop and build an improved all-solid-state laser that generates pulses at 236.5 nm. This effort will focus on packaging and design improvements that will improve reliability and portability. First, the optical design will be tested, analyzed, and improved to reduce sensitivity. Second, the mechanical design will be upgraded to reduce size and increase robustness. Third, the electronics will be redesigned and repackaged to reduce size. Finally, a computer control system will synchronize system components and automate laser operation.
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Navy | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 999.92K | Year: 2015
In response to the Navy request to create an innovative automated algorithm to detect aircraft within the video imagery with a very low false alarm rate in real time, the Aret team created an image processing algorithm called Aircraft Cueing Enhancement (ACE). With an innovative and very fast Bayesian Field Detector, ACE proved its efficacy on a variety of targets, environments and modalities. Over hours of operation o periscope-vantage HD color video it showed high detection probability with no false alarms above the low-confidence level. In Phase II the Aret team will enhance ACE to perform under conditions of increasing complexity. After advancing the airborne cueing algorithm to a very high level of performance and automation, the team will prepare it for ISIS integration and real-time operation at-sea.
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Navy | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 741.67K | Year: 2015
Arete proposes to develop, build, and demonstrate an all solid-state laser system that produces 20 mJ pulses at 473 nm and a repetition rate of 250 Hz. The laser design is based on a demonstrated high performance gain module with large mode area. The laser system is easily scalable for enhanced future capability.
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Navy | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.00M | Year: 2015
Detection and prosecution of naval surface and underwater mines is an increasingly important problem facing naval forces across the globe. Despite the need for strong mine countermeasure (MCM) technologies and capabilities, resources devoted to MCM have been limited in general, and are likely to remain sparse. There is therefore an urgent need to extract more actionable intelligence from the data streams of existing systems. Active sonar is the leading marine mine-hunting technology. The work proposed here aims to extend the capabilities of existing MCM systems using a combination of multi-ping processing and feature based classification to improve weak target detection and reduce the false contact rate. These algorithms will increase search rate and reduce operator review time for existing systems without the need for costly hardware upgrades. The algorithms will be capable of real-time processing on the existing PMA resources. By further exploiting existing sonar data streams this work will increase the increase the effectiveness of these critical Navy assets.
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 154.05K | Year: 2016
It has long been known that analog computers can be faster and more power efficient than digital processors by many orders of magnitude. Until the 1970s analog computers were the dominant controllers in most industrial and military applications. Even today digital processors are still slower and more power consumptive than analog, but offer much more flexibility (programmability) and precision. The fist hybrid approach to combine the best of both technologies dates to 1971 where a hybrid analog/digital design solved the heat equation ten times fast than the comparable digital computer but the demonstration used discrete components and was not practical for large problems. In 2006, Cowan used essentially the same architecture but in VLSI to solve the same heat equation 100x faster and with 1% of the power of the comparable digital processor and was shown to be scalable. We propose to extend Cowans work to second order in time and incorporate the latest advances in programmability from the FPAA community to design a true programmable, hybrid processor capable of direct solution of systems of non-linear PDEs and verify via simulation the same 100x, 1% performance of Cowan. Fabrication of a VLSI chip will be the focus of Phase II.
Arete Associates | Date: 2015-08-27
Embodiments herein provide for imaging objects. In one embodiment, a spectral imaging system includes an optical element configured to receive electromagnetic energy of a two-dimensional scene and a filter configured to provide a plurality of spectral filter profiles. The filter also transmits multiple spectral wavebands of the electromagnetic energy substantially simultaneously through at least one of the spectral profiles. The spectral imaging system also includes a detector configured to measure intensities of the multiple spectral wavebands, and a processor configured to generate a spectral image of the scene based on the measured intensities.
Arete Associates | Date: 2015-01-01
An apparatus aspect of the disclosure includes a lidar transmitter emitting laser beams, and scan mirrors (or assemblies) angularly adjustable to deflect the beams in orthogonal directions. In one aspect, afocal optics magnify deflection, a transmitter aperture transmits the beam, and a lidar receiver doesnt share the transmitter aperture. In another aspect, auxiliary optics calibrate the deflection. A method aspect of the disclosure includes noticing and responding to a remote source, using a local laser, adjustable scan mirror or assembly, afocal deflection magnifier, transmission aperture and separate receiver. Method steps described include operating the receiver to notice and determine the location of the remote source, and controlling the transmitter to direct laser light back toward that location.
Arete Associates | Date: 2015-09-29
Embodiments herein provide for improved range response in lidar systems. In one embodiment, a lidar system includes a laser, and a detector. First optics direct light from the laser on a beam path along a first optical axis of the first optics. Second optics image the light from the beam path onto a second plane that is substantially normal to the first plane. The second optics have a second optical axis that differs from the first optical axis. The first and the second optical axes lie in a same first plane. A first line in the first plane intersects a second line in the second plane at an acute angle. The first line is perpendicular to the first optical axis. A spatial filter configured in or near the second plane filters the light from the second optics onto the detector.