Somerville, MA, United States
Somerville, MA, United States

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Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Navy | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 79.75K | Year: 2013

Science Research Laboratory, Inc. (SRL) will develop a prototype Extinction Imager (EI) suitable for shipboard installation based on the research of Janet Shields (Scripps, UCSD). The Shields EI uses radiance contrast measurements of the sky/ocean interface at the horizon to determine the aerosol extinction coefficient along a horizontal path. This measurement is combined with models of atmospheric extinction as a function of altitude and vertical backscatter measurements from a ceilometer to predict extinction along arbitrary slant paths. In Phase I SRL will test an EI prototype on nominal 5 km east coast ocean ranges (1) under daylight and starlight conditions, (2) in the visible and 1000 nm wavelength bands and (3) with both black light trap targets and clear horizon measurements. These measurements will be used to design a Phase II EI camera system capable of 24/7 extinction predictions. SRL will also test MEMS Inertial Measurement Units to develop a design for an image-stabilized EI system that will scan the horizon while correcting for low-frequency pitch and roll. In Phase II the SRL EI system will be tested with a COTS ceilometer and an aethalometer to measure both aerosol and atmospheric scattering and absorption.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Missile Defense Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 124.96K | Year: 2015

The use of the heat of vaporization of the coolant can significantly reduce the required flow rate, and this reduction flows down throughout the thermal management system. Two-phase systems, however, are subject to buoyancy effects which can make them vulnerable to high-g maneuvers of military aircraft. Two-phase microchannel coolers can be designed such that surface tension effects dominate buoyancy forces, even in high g environments, desensitizing the thermal and flow performance to aircraft maneuvers. In the proposed effort, a two-phase microchannel cooling system with large surface tension forces will be designed, fabricated and tested to demonstrate operation. The result will be a compact, survivable cooling system with a significant reduction in flow rate compared to a single-phase water-cooled microchannel systems. Approved for Public Release 14-MDA-8047 (14 Nov 14)


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 99.86K | Year: 2012

The objective of this effort is to increase the power of 20% fill-factor laser diode (LD) bars from the present state-of-the-art (SOA) of 60-70 W/bar to 600 W/bar a"DARPA hard"ten-fold increase. This revolutionary and disruptive increase in the power/bar will be accomplished by increasing the power at which SOA LDs fail, namely, increasing the threshold for catastrophic optical damage (COD) of the LD by improving the passivation of the facets. While SOA LD passivations are perfectly acceptable for SOA bars operating at 60-70 W, they are not capable of withstanding the 600 W/bar required for our military HELs.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 2.25M | Year: 2010

Science Research Laboratory proposes to develop a pulsed, tunable mid-IR source with average power greater than 55 watts and high pulse repetition frequency (20 kHz). The program is divided into a baseline and two options. In the baseline program we will develop a continuous-wave laser operating at a wavelength of 2.1 microns with a power of approximately 120 watts. In the option programs, the 2.1-micron laser will be converted to pulsed operation; it will then be utilized as the pump for an optical parametric oscillator to generate mid-IR radiation around a wavelength of 4 micron. The development of this 4-micron source, which will represent a factor-of-10 increase in high-repetition-rate, pulsed mid-IR power over the current state of the art, is applicable to improved jamming of missile seekers that sense radiation of this wavelength. Such IR-seeking missiles, also known as “heat-seeking” missiles, have for many years posed a grave threat to both military and commercial aircraft. They are believed to have been responsible for destroying 90 percent of all aircraft lost in battle in the last quarter of the 20th century.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.75M | Year: 2010

There is a critical need for revolutionary approaches for thermal management of 21st century semiconductor devices and hardware, such as advanced high performance computers, high-power laser diodes and solar cells for the conversion of sun light to renewable energy. The one limiting factor for all of the above extremely important and compelling technologies is waste heat management that can remove several kilowatts of waste heat while simultaneously providing a low thermal resistance to that keeps the semiconductor junction temperature as low as possible. The reason for maintaining a low junction temperature is that all semiconductors perform better at lower temperature. SRL has recently demonstrated the dramatic potential of our advanced thermal management technology by extracting more than a kilowatt of optical power from a centimeter-wide laser-diode (LD) bar, which represents a 10X increase over the state-of-the-art. This successful demonstration was completed by attaching the LD chip to a pre-prototype, low thermal-resistance, high thermal-capacity, enhanced-performance impingement-cooler (EPIC). In this effort, SRL will demonstrate that the EPIC cooler can be built with a thickness of 3mm and preserve its low thermal resistance and high thermal capacity


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.85M | Year: 2010

Laser diodes (LD) have many desirable properties, e.g. small size and high electrical-to-optical efficiency. For ease of use, most applications require coupling the LD photons to an optical fiber. Attaching the LD-die to a heat-sink is a key packaging procedure. The heat-sink material is generally copper since it is the lowest thermal-resistance metal but its CTE (coefficient of thermal expansion) is significantly larger than the LD-die. Unless compensated, this CTE mismatch leads to mechanical stress which in turn degrades LD performance, lifetime and fiber-coupling efficiency. The use of a malleable-metal solder, consisting of either an indium-based or a lead-based alloy, is the present solution to the CTE mismatch problem between the LD and a copper heat-sink. Unfortunately, indium-alloy solders are subject to thermo-migration and electro-migration whereas lead-alloy solders do not comply with RoHS (Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances) regulations. SRL¡¦s revolutionary solution to this key technical problem is to use a low-temperature (


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: STTR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 745.21K | Year: 2010

In this STTR project, Science Research Laboratory (SRL) and Boston University Photonics Center (BU Photonics) will develop a revolutionary optical technology for detecting localized increases in temperature on time scales ranging from nanoseconds to microseconds. Localized diode heating is a critical factor limiting the lifetime of LDs; such heating causes optical and electrical instabilities that lead to catastrophic optical damage (COD), in which a dramatic temperature increase causes melting in the vicinity of the output facet. By appropriately responding to instabilities in laser diodes (LDs), SRL has demonstrated 10X increase in their lifetime. In Phase 1, we successfully identified an optical precursor of COD in high-power broad-area laser diodes. In Phase 2, we will (1) assemble a diode protection system using commercially available fast and intelligent data-acquisition systems; (2) demonstrate the improvement in lifetime and performance of laser diodes obtained by protecting; (3) fabricate intelligent fault-protection electronics that are based on the results of the optimum fault-detection criteria; and (4) deliver a prototype of the protection circuit to a facility of DARPA’s choice for additional testing and verification. As an option, we will extend our diode-protection technology to other LD systems of interest to DARPA: (1) Slab-coupled Optical Waveguide Lasers (SCOWLs), single mode LDs that can be coherently combined into high-power arrays; and (2) LDs incorporating SRL’s revolutionary cooling technology to provide operation at power levels unsustainable with conventional cooling.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.75M | Year: 2010

There is a critical need for revolutionary approaches for thermal management of 21st century semiconductor devices and hardware, such as advanced high performance computers, high-power laser diodes and solar cells for the conversion of sun light to renewable energy. The one limiting factor for all of the above extremely important and compelling technologies is waste heat management that can remove several kilowatts of waste heat while simultaneously providing a low thermal resistance to that keeps the semiconductor junction temperature as low as possible. The reason for maintaining a low junction temperature is that all semiconductors perform better at lower temperature. SRL has recently demonstrated the dramatic potential of our advanced thermal management technology by extracting more than a kilowatt of optical power from a centimeter-wide laser-diode (LD) bar, which represents a 10X increase over the state-of-the-art. This successful demonstration was completed by attaching the LD chip to a pre-prototype, low thermal-resistance, high thermal-capacity, enhanced-performance impingement-cooler (EPIC). In this effort, SRL will demonstrate that the EPIC cooler can be built with a thickness of 3mm and preserve its low thermal resistance and high thermal capacity


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 749.83K | Year: 2010

Science Research Laboratory proposes to develop a pulsed, tunable mid-IR source with average power greater than 55 watts and high pulse repetition frequency (20 kHz). The program is divided into a baseline and two options. In the baseline program we will develop a continuous-wave laser operating at a wavelength of 2.1 microns with a power of approximately 120 watts. In the option programs, the 2.1-micron laser will be converted to pulsed operation; it will then be utilized as the pump for an optical parametric oscillator to generate mid-IR radiation around a wavelength of 4 micron. The development of this 4-micron source, which will represent a factor-of-10 increase in high-repetition-rate, pulsed mid-IR power over the current state of the art, is applicable to improved jamming of missile seekers that sense radiation of this wavelength. Such IR-seeking missiles, also known as "heat-seeking" missiles, have for many years posed a grave threat to both military and commercial aircraft. They are believed to have been responsible for destroying 90 percent of all aircraft lost in battle in the last quarter of the 20th century.


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.55M | Year: 2010

Laser diodes (LD) have many desirable properties, e.g. small size and high electrical-to-optical efficiency. For ease of use, most applications require coupling the LD photons to an optical fiber. Attaching the LD-die to a heat-sink is a key packaging procedure. The heat-sink material is generally copper since it is the lowest thermal-resistance metal but its CTE (coefficient of thermal expansion) is significantly larger than the LD-die. Unless compensated, this CTE mismatch leads to mechanical stress which in turn degrades LD performance, lifetime and fiber-coupling efficiency. The use of a malleable-metal solder, consisting of either an indium-based or a lead-based alloy, is the present solution to the CTE mismatch problem between the LD and a copper heat-sink. Unfortunately, indium-alloy solders are subject to thermo-migration and electro-migration whereas lead-alloy solders do not comply with RoHS (Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances) regulations. SRL-Ys revolutionary solution to this key technical problem is to use a low-temperature (

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