Digital Optics Technologies, Inc.

Rolling Meadows, IL, United States

Digital Optics Technologies, Inc.

Rolling Meadows, IL, United States
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Grant
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 749.91K | Year: 2016

The fast-light effect, produced by anomalous dispersion, has emerged as a highly promising mechanism for enhancing the sensitivity of many devices. It is a potentially disruptive technology with the prospect of revolutionizing the field of precision metrology. We will develop this technology in two parallel paths: A rubidium vapor Raman laser-based Active Fast Light Optical Gyroscope/Accelerometer (AFLOGA), and a fiber Brillouin laser based Active Fast Light Fiber-Optic Sensor (AFLIFOS). Both of these systems will be capable of acting as gyroscopes and accelerometers simultaneously. In addition, the AFLIFOS will be a very sensitive sensor for strain and temperature. In final form, the Superluminal Inertial Measurement Units (SIMU) produced with these technologies should be more than four orders of magnitude more sensitive than current state-of-the-art inertial measurement units. In Phase II, we will demonstrate, test, and characterize a laboratory-scale AFLOGA, then use the knowledge gained to design, construct, and test a compact AFLOGA that will fit within a 10 cm by 30 cm by 30 cm case. A design for a complete, six-axis SIMU will be developed with a footprint comparable to commercial inertial measurement units, but with dramatically higher sensitivity. In parallel, we will design, construct, and test a laboratory-scale AFLIFOS system. Finally, a theoretical investigation will be carried out to develop a Master Equation based model for quantum noise limit on the enhancement in sensitivity using a superluminal laser sensor. Northwestern University will serve a subcontractor for this project.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Air Force | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 150.00K | Year: 2013

ABSTRACT: For navigation of space platforms under GPS denied conditions, there is a need for micro-inertial sensors, with better accuracy and smaller volume and weight than the state of the art. We at Digital Optics Technologies (DOT) have been developing a superluminal ring laser gyroscope (SRLG) that can improve the accuracy of rotation sensing by nearly six orders of magnitude. Alternatively, for a given accuracy need, the SRLG can be very small. DOT has also developed the architecture for a superluminal ring laser accelerometer (SRLA), which can achieve a sensitivity of 10 pico-g/root-Hz. Under Phase I, we will demonstrate technical feasibility of realizing a compact inertial measurement unit (IMU) that would comprise three SRLGs and three SRLAs for all-axes sensing, utilizing miniature vapor cells, integrated optical components, detectors and lasers. In addition to miniaturization, a key focus of this effort would be to develop requisite components that would be suitable for space platforms. To this end, we will carry out analysis and test for radiation hardening, extreme temperature variations, and tolerance for high-G situations. Development of a prototype that would meet the size, weight, power and performance goals would be carried out in Phase II. Honeywell, Triad Technology, and International Photonics Consultants would be subcontractors. Dr. Selim Shahriar, inventor of the SRLG and the SRLA and the chief scientific adviser at DOT, will coordinate the overall effort. BENEFIT: Three SRLAs, combined with three SRLGs, can be used to realize a high accuracy IMU that is very compact and light weight. Such an IMU could also be relatively inexpensive. An IMU of this type could have a significant impact on guidance, navigation and control systems for spacecraft, launch vehicles, missiles, kill vehicles, smart munitions, and other applications requiring precision inertial knowledge. Non-DoD applications include spacecraft guidance, navigation and control, as well as commercial aircraft inertial navigation systems


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Air Force | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 750.00K | Year: 2013

ABSTRACT: A superluminal ring laser gyroscope (SRLG) can improve the accuracy of rotation sensing by nearly five orders of magnitude. The same mechanism can be used to produce a superluminal ring laser accelerometer (SRLA), with a similar improvement in accuracy. Under Phase I, we have demonstrated the feasibility of the SRLA. Under the Phase II work proposed here, we will develop a miniaturized version of the SRLA, with a sensitivity of 10 pico-g/Hz^(1/2), a volume of 2cmX2cmX1cm, weighing about 15 grams, and using less than 2W of power. It will have a high dynamic range, capable of sensing an acceleration of 100g, a bias stability less than 0.01micro-g, and a scale factor fluctuation of less than 0.001 PPM. Under another Phase II proposal that have been selected for funding, we plan to develop an IMU, consisting of SRLGs and SRLAs, with an emphasis on performance optimization as well as electronic interfacing. In contrast, the emphasis of the work proposed here will be on miniaturization, while maintaining high performance. Since the SRLG makes use of the same core technology as the SRLA, the work carried out here will translate easily to the corresponding miniaturization of the overall 3-axis IMU, with a volume of 27 cm^3. BENEFIT: Three SRLAs, combined with three SRLGs, can be used to realize a high accuracy IMU that is very compact and light weight. Such an IMU could also be relatively inexpensive. An IMU of this type could have a significant impact on guidance, navigation and control systems for spacecraft, launch vehicles, missiles, kill vehicles, smart munitions and other applications requiring precision inertial knowledge. Non-DoD applications include spacecraft guidance, navigation and control, commercial aviation, emergency response in urban canyons, mining and tunneling operations, and maritime operations.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Air Force | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 749.98K | Year: 2013

ABSTRACT: For GPS denied navigation, there is a need for developing inertial measurement units (IMU), employing gyroscopes and accelerometers, with better accuracy and/or smaller volume and weight than the state of the art. Under Phase I, we have established the feasibility of realizing a superluminal ring laser gyroscope (SRLG) and a superluminal ring laser accelerometer (SRLA), based on diode-pumped alkali lasers (DPALs), augmented by a fast-light Raman cells. The SRLG can improve the accuracy of rotation sensing by nearly five orders of magnitude. Alternatively, for a given accuracy need, the SRLG can be very small. The SRLA can be very compact, and achieve a sensitivity of 10 pico-g/ & #61654;Hz. The primary goal of the Phase II effort is to demonstrate a prototype IMU that would house three SRLGs and three SRLAs for 3-axis rotation and acceleration sensing, utilizing miniature vapor cells and frequency-stabilized lasers. The prototype will be tested and analyzed in order to identify any possible technical hurdles in meeting the size, weight, power and performance goals stated in the solicitation, as well as to address applicability to weapon systems and aircraft/spacecraft environments. Northwestern University will participate as a subcontractor. Dr. Selim Shahriar, inventor of the SRLG and the SRLA and the chief scientific adviser at DOT, will coordinate the overall effort. BENEFIT: Three SRLAs, combined with three SRLGs, can be used to realize a high accuracy IMU that is very compact and light weight. Such an IMU could also be relatively inexpensive. An IMU of this type could have a significant impact on guidance, navigation and control systems for spacecraft, launch vehicles, missiles, kill vehicles, smart munitions, and other applications requiring precision inertial knowledge. Non-DoD applications include spacecraft guidance, navigation and control, commercial aviation, emergency response in urban canyons, mining and tunneling operations, and maritime operations.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 99.99K | Year: 2014

We propose to develop a low SWaP, portable microwave Rb-87 cold atomic clock using pulsed coherent population trapping (CPT). The SWaP goal is to achieve a volume of <1 liter, weight of <1 kG, and a power consumption of <5 Watts. The performance goal is a stability of 10^(-12) at 1 sec, <5x10^(-15) at 1 day. The specific approach we will pursue entails the following features: (a) Use pulsed CPT in the D1 manifold of trapped Rb-87 atoms, (b) Use magnetically insensitive Zeeman sublevels for the clock transition (c) Use a pi-polarized auxiliary beam to keep all atoms optically pumped into the clock levels for maximum signal, (d) use the proprietary all-glass miniature cell developed by Honeywell under the Darpa IMPACT program, with magnetic shielding added, (e) Use large trapping beam diameters to increase the signal, and (f) Suppress light-shift by saturating the CP transition during the first pulse. Honeywell and Northwestern University will be subcontractors on this project. During Phase I, we will use a conventional magneto-optic trap loaded from Rb getters to demonstrate the functionality of the clock, and produce the design for a miniaturized clock based on the Honeywell glass cell, meeting the SWaP requirements. During Phase II, we will realize the miniaturized clock, and demonstrate meeting the short and long term stability goals via studies of errors sources and mitigations thereof.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Air Force | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 746.27K | Year: 2014

ABSTRACT: For navigation of space platforms under GPS denied conditions, there is a need for micro-inertial sensors, with better accuracy and smaller volume and weight than the state of the art. We at Digital Optics Technologies (DOT) have been developing a superluminal ring laser gyroscope (SRLG) that can improve the accuracy of rotation sensing by nearly six orders of magnitude. Alternatively, for a given accuracy need, the SRLG can be very small. DOT has also developed the architecture for a superluminal ring laser accelerometer (SRLA), which can achieve a sensitivity of 10 pico-g/root-Hz. Under Phase II, we will employ a shared-cavity dual laser design, employing DPAL gain and Raman depletion, to demonstrate an SRLG with a rotation sensitivity of one micro degree per root hour, and an SRLA with a sensitivity of 10 pico-g per root Hz, two orders of magnitude better than the STAR accelerometer. We will also demonstrate the feasibility of realizing a three-axes miniature IMU, with three SRLGs and three SRLAs, with a diameter of 3.5 inch and a height of 3.35 inch. To this end, we will demonstrate a DPAL gain and Raman depletion based superluminal ring laser using a miniature dual-vapor-cell and a laser locking technique employing chip scale vapor cells. Finally, we will develop a complete, ready-for-production engineering design of a three-axes proto-type IMU of this volume that with minimized weight, power requirement and robustness suitable for space launch and operation on a space platform. Honeywell and Triad Technology will be subcontractors. Dr. Selim Shahriar, inventor of the SRLG and the SRLA and the chief scientific adviser at DOT, will coordinate the overall effort. BENEFIT: Three SRLAs, combined with three SRLGs, can be used to realize a high accuracy IMU that is very compact and light weight. Such an IMU could also be relatively inexpensive. An IMU of this type could have a significant impact on guidance, navigation and control systems for spacecraft, launch vehicles, missiles, kill vehicles, smart munitions, and other applications requiring precision inertial knowledge. Non-DoD applications include spacecraft guidance, navigation and control, as well as commercial aircraft inertial navigation systems


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Air Force | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 734.46K | Year: 2013

ABSTRACT: As integrated circuits technologies scale down to deep nanometer regime, conventional transistors and interconnect are approaching their fundamental physical and material limits. One of the potential directions for the next generation nanoelectronic applications is the adoption of graphene based circuit elements. In the past few years there has been a surge of interest for the two versions of graphene technology carbon nanotube (CNT) and graphene nanoribbon (GNR), for their large mean free path, excellent electrical, thermal and mechanical properties, ballistic transport, higher current density, and resistance to reliability problem like electromigration that plague metal interconnect technology. Potentially more controllable and easier synthesis and fabrication process make GNR more preferable than CNT. In this project we will model the electrical properties and material characteristics of GNR to develop efficient design methodologies and computer aided design (CAD) tools. We will specifically focus on multi layer graphene nanoribbon (MLGNR) interconnects. The electrostatic and electromagnetic interaction of layers within MLGNR will be investigated. We will develop prototypes of contacted graphene transistor and MLGNR interconnects and conduct a series of experiments as well as radiation-hardness studies to establish the feasibility of using GNR transistor and interconnects in nanoscale integrated circuits. The results would be used for a comparative analysis of GNR devices with CNT and conventional circuit elements. Northwestern University, University of Missouri Kansas City, and the Michigan Molecular Institute will serve as subcontractors. BENEFIT: Graphene is believed to be the strongest (100 times stronger than steel) yet thinnest possible material with exceptional electrical and thermal conductivities. The most promising use of graphene would be to develop ultra-low-power, lightweight, high-density and radiation hardened nanoelectronic circuits for military and space applications. There are other enticing possibilities. Graphene powder, for its very large surface-to-volume ratio and high conductivity, can lead to improvements in electrical battery efficiency. Graphene based sensors would lead to new bolometers that may be used by military in night vision goggles or for thermal body imaging and may eventually be incorporated into smart phones. A new class of graphene based electrochemical super-capacitors are being investigated for applications requiring high power density such as electric vehicles, utility load-leveling, heavy-load starting assists for diesel locomotives, military and medical applications, and also low power applications such as camera-flash equipment, MP3 players, pulsed-light generators, and as back-up power for computer memory. Graphene is also being considered for flexible displays and carbon-based solar cells. Therefore, many researchers are anticipating that break through in graphene technology would solve global challenges in health, security and sustainability.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Missile Defense Agency | Program: STTR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 100.00K | Year: 2013

Under the work proposed here, we will develop a physics based comprehensive software for modeling the behavior of a diode pumped alkali laser: DPAL. The software will be designed primarily for a He-Rb DPAL. However, it could easily be applied to DPALs based on other alkali atoms, such as Cs. Furthermore, the model would be versatile enough to be applicable to other high energy lasers as well. Contrary to the conventional rate equation approach, which is often inadequate in predicting effects such as frequency pulling and spectral properties, we will make use of a comprehensive approach based on density matrix. We will also model the pump using a stochastic phase diffusion model, which is likely to be more accurate than the conventional approach of using spectrally inhomogeneous absorption cross sections. We will also employ computational fluid dynamics techniques to take into account the effect of fluid flow and temperature gradients. Longitudinal and transversal intensity variations will also be treated carefully. Northwestern University (NU), with Prof. Selim Shahriar as PI, will serve as a subcontractor, and will contribute to the development of the theoretical model. Both NU and DOT (the prime) have several DPALs currently operating. These DPALs will be used to carry out experimental verification of the relevant DPAL rate constants. Prof. Yuri Rostovtsev of University of North Texas, an expert in all theoretical aspects of this project, will work as a consultant to DOT, and will be the leader of the theoretical effort.


Grant
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 124.92K | Year: 2015

The fast-light effect in a cavity, produced by anomalous dispersion, has emerged as an important mechanism for enhancing the sensitivity of many devices. There are two modes of operation of such a cavity. In the active mode, the system is a superluminal ring laser (SRL) that experiences an anomalous dispersion caused by the gain medium. In the passive mode, the system is a white light cavity (WLC) that experiences an anomalous dispersion caused by an intra-cavity medium or via coupling to another cavity or another mode in the same cavity. We will investigation the development several closely related technologies based on the fast light effect: gyroscopes, accelerometers and general purpose fiber-optic sensors. For each technology, we will primarily pursue the active approach. The gyroscope will be based on using a pair of spatially overlapping SRLs realized via Raman gains, with Raman depletion used for anomalous dispersion. The accelerometer will be realized by using a similar system, but with two lasers that are spatially shifted with respect to each other. The fiber-optic sensor will be based on using a pair of Brillouin gain based SRLs, where the anomalous dispersion is produced via coupling to a cavity. In addition, for each device, we will investigate theoretically some passive techniques in order to determine relative advantages and tradeoffs between the two approaches. Specifically, for the gyroscope and the accelerometer, we will investigate the use of couple cavity based WLCs; for the fiber-optic sensor, we will investigate the use of a WLC realized by dual-peaked Brillouin gain. The particular mode of operation to be pursued for developing a practical version of each of these devices under Phase II will be established in accordance with the findings of the Phase I effort, and potential feedback and guidance received from the NASA program manager. Northwestern University, with Prof. Shahriar as the PI, will be a subcontractor.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Missile Defense Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 125.00K | Year: 2015

There is a need for new types of IMUs, with better accuracy than the state of the art. Digital Optics Technologies (DOT) has been developing a Fast Light Optical Gyroscope (FLOG) that can improve the accuracy of rotation sensing by nearly six orders of magnitude. Alternatively, for a given accuracy need, the FLOG can be very small. DOT has also developed a Fast Light Optical Accelerometer (FLOAC). Under Phase I, we will demonstrate technical feasibility of realizing a compact Fast Light Inertial Measurement Unit (FLIMU) that would comprise three FLOGs and three FLOACs, utilizing miniature vapor cells, integrated optical components, detectors and lasers. The FLIMU is expected to be at least three orders of magnitude better than the state of the art in tactical IMUs, while meeting the SWaP goals of this solicitation. In addition to miniaturization, a key focus of this effort would be to develop requisite components that would be able to withstand harsh conditions such as radiation, vibration and shock. To this end, we will analyze and optimize the FLIMU design for robustness to vibration and shock, and carry out tests of key components for radiation hardness. Development of a prototype that would meet the SWaP, performance and robustness goals would be carried out in Phase II. Honeywell and Northwestern University would be subcontractors. Approved for Public Release 14-MDA-8047 (14 Nov 14)

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