Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Air Force | Program: STTR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 97.58K | Year: 2011
ABSTRACT: Fresnel-zone lens can meet many of the Air Force's requirements for conformal aperture technology including light-weight, large aperture size, and the ability to conform to a curved surface. However, aberrations limit the effective field-of-view of static Fresnel-zone lens, and the spectral performance is limited to a narrow band. A tunable Fresnel-zone lens with variable-zone-radii will able to image over a wide field-of-view by adjusting defocus to correct for off-axis aberrations and perform a spectral scan from the short-wave through the long-wave infrared. This proposal discusses materials and designs that may be used to create electronically-controlled Fresnel-zone lens without any mechanical parts. BENEFIT: The research and development in this proposal will enable light-weight tunable-optics capable of active-wavefront manipulation through focus control and higher-order compensation. This technology can have a large impact on the aerospace industry by replacing the mechanical gimbals in current systems with solid-state electronically-programmable optics.
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Army | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 940.63K | Year: 2014
In the first phase of this program Plasmonics was able to make a breadboard profile sensor using COTS optics and a pyroelectric-linear-detector array that was able to detect a human by subtending greater than 16 pixels across the target at a range of up to 75 m. Based on work in Phase I, it was concluded that the design of existing COTS linear-detector arrays was insufficient to achieve a range of 300 m in a profile sensor. It was determined that this limitation in the COTS arrays was due to the size of the pixels and the insufficient thermal isolation of the pixels. The existing linear arrays are designed for spectroscopy rather than imaging. A pyroelectric-detector array that overcomes these limitations was designed in Phase I. A sparse-array configuration that uses fewer pixels than COTS arrays, and thus has lower power consumption, was also designed. In Phase II complete prototype sensors using these designs will be built and tested.
Plasmonics Inc. | Date: 2013-02-22
When using micro-resonant structures, a resonant structure may be turned on or off (e.g., when a display element is turned on or off in response to a changing image or when a communications switch is turned on or off to send data different data bits). Rather than turning the charged particle beam on and off, the beam may be moved to a position that does not excite the resonant structure, thereby turning off the resonant structure without having to turn off the charged particle beam. In one such embodiment, at least one deflector is placed between a source of charged particles and the resonant structure(s) to be excited. When the resonant structure is to be turned on (i.e., excited), the at least one deflector allows the beam to pass by undeflected. When the resonant structure is to be turned off, the at least one deflector deflects the beam away from the resonant structure by an amount sufficient to prevent the resonant structure from becoming excited.
Plasmonics Inc. and University of Central Florida | Date: 2012-08-24
Infrared metamaterial arrays containing Au elements immersed in a medium of benzocyclobutene (BCB) were fabricated and selectively etched to produce small square flakes with edge dimensions of approximately 20 m. Two unit-cell designs were fabricated: one employed crossed-dipole elements while the other utilized square-loop elements.
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Army | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 99.42K | Year: 2012
The research and development proposed here will examine using sparse-linear-detector-array configurations to lower the power consumption of personnel detection sensors. Plasmonics will design and test a bread board LWIR pyroelectric sensor to show that detector arrays with sufficient sensitivity to meet the application needs can be built. Optical systems that can reliably detect and classify humans out to a range of 300 m will also be designed to establish feasibility. The goal of the project is to create a sparse detector array that can achieve sufficient range and resolution to detect and classify humans without the need for a power consuming ROIC. Packaging of such a detector array will be designed and investigated in Phase I.