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Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 991.71K | Year: 2015

As semiconductors heat up, thermal expansion induces mechanical stresses and these stresses can either cause failure, or a change in the performance due to changes in electron transport. Understanding these e ects is challenging due to the coupled physics nature of the problem. General statement of how this problem is being addressed This problem is being addressed by solving for each of the separate physics e ects; thermal, mechanical, electron transport, simultaneously, but in a coupled manner. The electron transport solver was developed and applied to the photocathode problem. A new physics solver for modeling mechanical stresses will be added to the VSim code. By using our unique coupled physics algorithms, we simultaneously run to electrical, thermal, and electron transport solvers. Enabling these coupled physics simulations will provide benefits for investigators at national laboratories wanting to understand photocathodes, and for the semiconductor industry wanting to better understand the e ects of thermal-mechanical stresses. Commercial Applications and other benefits Understanding thermal-mechanical stress in the semiconductor industry is becoming very important due to the wafers becoming thinner and small form factors becoming important. Photocathodes are a key component of light sou


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.01M | Year: 2015

In order for Moores law (exponential growth of compute capability) to continue to hold, the bandwidths of interconnects will need to be increased by 10x or moreto well beyond 100Gbs. This represents a formidable challenge to Integrated Circuit (IC) manufacturers because higher frequency will exacerbate already strained power dissipation of traditional copper interconnects. As a result, server and networking equipment companies (IBM, CISCO, Lucent/Alcatel) are pushing the semiconductor industry toward investing in using light (photonics) to propagate information. We will improve the design productivity of silicon photonic IC components, which target Silicon on Insulator (SOI) manufacturing processes through the development of automation and modeling tools packaged with a set of pre-designed parametric silicon photonic IC passive building blocks (waveguides, couplers, resonators, modulators, and Y-junctions). The geometric parameters of these blocks can be modified and simulated to predict performance for a specific target SOI manufacturers process. The ability to accurately model and simulate specific instances is enabled by our unique three-dimensional physical modeling, multi-physics simulation and cluster computing capabilities. In Phase I, we laid down the groundwork for visualizing and analyzing staggered fields, which are common in electromagnetic simulations. In Phase II, we implemented conservative algorithms to compute line and area integrals of staggered fields; the same algorithms will be applied in Phase IIB to characterize silicon photonics components. The outcome of the work performed in Phase I and II will be applied to characterize optical components with unprecedented accuracy using an S-matrix formalism. The result will be that each optical component can then be integrated into a larger circuit using tools and processes similar to those currently employed in electronic integrated circuit design. Most silicon photonics design tool and manufacturing sourcing (e.g. Luceda and Phoenix Design) is done outside of the U.S., while the end use for this technology within big data companies (Apple, Amazon, Google, Facebook, Microsoft) and their equipment suppliers (CISCO, IBM, Dell, HP, Oracle) are U.S. companies. We believe the automation of the key building blocks used to design and specify the manufacture of silicon photonic ICs will enable these US companies and their IC partners to accelerate their ability to design silicon photonic ICs.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 154.96K | Year: 2016

DoE researchers are presently designing higher current electron sources for energy and environmental applications, among others. Computer modeling is an important part of this design process, but presently researchers cannot use important tools, like particle-in-cell and particle tracking tools or like time domain and frequency domain tools, easily together. The goal of this project is to make it easier for researchers to import results of one code into another, to exchange results between codes, and to compare results from the di erent codes. Statement of how this problem is being addressed We propose to improve the ability of a set of codes to interface with one another and to develop the ability to display results from multiple codes in a way that makes it easy to compare results. What is to be done in the Phase I In Phase I, we have four main tasks: i) improve the capability to easily couple a frequency domain and time domain code, ii) improve the capability to easily couple a time domain and a particle tracking code, iii) demonstrate optimization of parameters relevant to high current electron sources for these codes, and iv) demonstrate easy to use visualization and analysis of the data from multiple codes. Commercial applications and other benefits One of the modeling tools we plan to use is presently a successful commercial software product, and the improvements we plan in this project will make it even more successful by expanding the market for this tool. For example, the need for high current electron sources in the medical industry is a growing market, and providing a benchmarked tool will allow us to increase the sales of this product. Key words: environmental application of electron sources, computer modeling


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 154.90K | Year: 2016

Statement of the problem or situation that is being addressed Magnetic fusion experiments, which aim to dependably and reliably produce electric power by confining superheated plasma in magnetic fields, are subject to a host of complex kinetic physical processes which influence the stability and power production of the plasma discharge. Analogous kinetic processes occur in low-temperature plasma discharges, and influence the e ectiveness and reliability of techniques such as etching or thin-film deposition. Kinetic processes in fusion or lowtemperature plasmas can be numerically modeled using particle-in-cell (PIC) echniques, but such models are subject to numerical instabilities unless the highest-frequency, fastest behaviors present in the model are resolved in time. The ensuing time-resolution constraints raise the computational cost of modeling low-frequency kinetic processes, sometimes unfeasibly. Further, although these high-frequency, fast kinetic processes dictate the primary computational constraints on the model, they are often of reduced importance relative to the lower-frequency kinetic physics of interest. Statement of how this problem is being addressed A new numerical technique, called ”speed-limited particle-in-cell” (SLPIC) modeling, has been developed within the past year. This approach formulates new ‘slowed-down’ equations of motion for the fastest particles in conventional PIC models, such that timesteps of increased size can be used in the particle-in-cell simulation without triggering numerical instability. Simulations of slow kinetic processes of interest can thus be run more quickly. Further, simulations which were previously considered intractable are now brought into the realm of feasibility. What is to be done in the Phase I SLPIC methods will be implemented in Tech-X’s VSim code, and tested against benchmark problems in fusion and low-temperature plasma modeling. We will demonstrate that SLPIC models can quickly and accurately compute the benchmark solutions, and will quantify the speedup enabled by these techniques. Commercial applications and other benefits Plasma processes such as etching or thin-film deposition are key manufacturing techniques in the modern electronics industry. Computer modeling plays a critical role in the design of plasma processing equipment that reliably and dependably carries out these manufacturing processes. SLPIC will enable these equipment-design e orts to proceed more quickly and e ciently, and also allow more complex design studies (which are too computationally costly using present-day PIC models) to be explored. Such e orts ultimately permit quality increases and price reductions in commercial and consumer electronic devices (phones, tablets, laptops, etc.). Key words: speed-limited particle-in-cell, kinetic processes, timestep constraints, plasma processing Summary for members of Congress Computer models of plasma discharges, used in the manufacture of modern electronic devices and also in fusion energy experiments, must take many small timesteps to be accurate. We are developing a new technique, SLPIC, which enables these models to take larger timesteps and run faster while still retaining good accuracy.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 154.83K | Year: 2016

Fundamental understanding of the processes which govern the formation of nanoparticles is required to design industrial-scale automated mass production units. Detailed characterization of the plasma in nanoparticle growth regions enables identification of the parameters influencing the formation of nanoparticles in plasmas. However, since it is very di cult to directly measure these parameters (especially spatial distributions of the species concentrations, plasma ensities, and temperatures), numerical simulation is essential to model, understand and predict the growth of nanoparticles in plasmas. Statement of how this problem is being addressed A new module will be developed in Tech-X Corporation’s USim fluid-plasma simulation software. Results from simulations of plasma sources and states in nanoparticle growth regions will be validated against the experiments conducted at The George Washington University (GWU). Growth models to predict the nanoparticle size will be added to the software. The nanoparticle growth models will be validated with the nanoparticle characteristics easurements. The simulation software along with the growth models will enable the researchers to conduct feasibility studies of their synthesis process and its sustainability. What is to be done in the Phase I Capabilities will be developed in the USim fluid-plasma simulation tool that will allow for coupled heat transfer between fluids and solids, necessary for describing nanoparticle formation in plasmas. The development e ort will utilize existing USim capabilities to solve physical equations describing heat flow in a compound material and its surface evaporation due to arc heating. New boundary conditions describing the e ect of plasma sheaths will be added. Several simulations will be carried for the synthesis of 2d layers and the results will be benchmarked against the experimental data. As a proof of concept, The 2d layer characteristics from the experiments will be related to the species flux in the growth regions obtained from the simulations. Commercial applications and other benefits The software developed will be essential for designing the synthesis technique as well as the required equipment. From the e orts of Phase I work, immediate sales are expected in the plasma device and nanomaterial synthesis industries. As a spin o , the coupled heat transfer pabilities will increase sales in several related areas such as aerothermal heating and material degradation in hypersonic vehicle simulations, internal combustion imulations in the automobile industry, and electronics cooling. Key words predictive synthesis, 2d layered materials, nanoparticles, plasma, modeling, MoS2


Grant
Agency: Department of Defense | Branch: Air Force | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 749.59K | Year: 2016

The overall project objective is to develop and demonstrate a software package based on Fermi kinetics charge transport and Delaunay/Voronoi field discretization that accurately predicts semiconductor device behavior from DC up through the mm-wave and TH...


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 154.82K | Year: 2016

DOE has invested significant resources in the development of high-fidelity high-performance physics modeling software such as Geant4. Geant4 could have an enormous impact in industrial design processes, but they are not easily integrated into workflows, which are familiar to engineers. Tech-X will create a framework G4E (“Geant4 for Engineers”) allowing space and medical radiology engineers to use Geant4 through efficient and user-friendly workflows: set up a 3D problem by importing CAD (Computer Aided Design) models into a Graphical User Interface (GUI); explore the physics and geometry parameter space, set up common analysis types and parameters (“scoring”) using textual input: all without the need to program in C++. Tech-X Corporation will implement an application for calculating total ionizing doses based on Geant4; integrate it with automated parameter studies and implement a Graphical User Interface allowing users to run this application and its ensembles. Robust R&D tool funded by DoE will be synthesized in a commercial Computer Aided Engineering software package to facilitate the automatic design of optimal detectors, satellites, and nuclear medicine devices. This development will advance the Digital Manufacturing initiative and enhance US competitiveness through improved product quality and reliability. Commercial Applications and Other Benefits: G4E will streamline automated analysis and design of commercial satellites (weather, communications, entertainment) and medical radiology (cancer treatments and diagnostics). Other applications are radiation analysis and protection for NASA missions and DOD satellites, national security, and detector modeling for DOE’s HEP and NP offices.


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 149.78K | Year: 2016

Photocathodes capable of delivering high average current, low emittance, and high brightness electron beams, with a long lifetime and high quantum efficiency are needed for the effective operation of modern accelerator facilities managed by the Department of Energy (DOE). Recent experiments on alkali-antimonide and heterostructured semiconductor photocathodes have demonstrated the potential of these materials to generate electron beams with the targeted properties. The physics of these complex materials with different heterostructured configurations possible is not well understood. We propose to develop software to enable high-fidelity, three-dimensional, modeling capabilities to simulate and design alkali-antimonide and semiconductor heterostructured photocathodes that meet or exceed the desired operational parameters for DOE facilities. We will design and develop software code for modeling of electron generation in alkali-antimonide photocathodes due to absorption of photons with given energies and charge particle transport based on the Monte Carlo approach for treating scattering processes. We will include the important effects of built-in fields due to heterojunctions and band bending in surface space-charge regions. We will model the physics of electron emission using a general approach for treating photocathode surface potentials. The developed models will be implemented to enable end-to-end, high-fidelity three-dimensional simulations of electron generation, transport, and electron emission from alkali-antimonide photocathodes. We will investigate and prototype algorithms for electron generation due to optical excitations, electron scattering with phonons, charge impurities, and other charged carriers. We will explore how to take into account effects of built-in fields due to heterojunctions and surface space-charge regions. We will develop a proof-of-concept prototype simulation of charge generation, transport, and electron emission from an alkali-antimonide photocathode. The proposed new modeling capabilities will be added to VSim, a Tech-X software product, and will aid researchers in developing electron sources that meet or exceed the desired operational parameters for future DOE facilities. This project will produce commercial quality software, including a state-of-the-art graphical user interface, and will increase VSim's capability to generate further


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.01M | Year: 2016

The successful operation of the Department of Energy (DOE) X-ray light sources, free elec- tron laser (FEL), and linear accelerator facilities depends on developing advanced photoinjectors. These require photocathodes capable to deliver high quantum efficiency (QE), high-brightness, low emittance, high-average current electron beams. Measurements have demonstrated the potential to generate electron beams with the high repetition rate and QE required for FEL and next gener- ation light source applications, however, high-fidelity simulation capabilities are needed to enable detailed understanding of the physics of electron emission from rough surfaces that affect QE dy- namics, response time, and dark current properties of photocathodes. We propose to develop new software to address these issues in order to provide simulation tools for the design of photocathodes that meet or exceed the desired operational parameters for next generation DOE facilities. General statement of how this problem or situation is being addressed Although charge transport in GaAs photocathodes can now be simulated with the three di- mensional (3D) computational physics kernel Vorpal, this code currently lacks algorithms for the high-fidelity modeling of time-dependent electron generation, the representation of rough cathode- vacuum interfaces, and electron emission from rough surfaces in an applied field. We will develop and implement algorithms for accurate modeling of electron emission from rough photocathode surfaces with negative electron affinity, surface physics phenomena related to electric field enhance- ment and varying electron affinity within Vorpal to enable realistic 3D modeling of time-dependent electron emission and dark current effects. What is to be done in Phase I? We will investigate and prototype proof-of-concept algorithms for time-dependent electron gen- eration due to absorption of laser pulses, representation of rough photocathode surfaces, calculation of electric fields on photocathode-vacuum interfaces with different profiles, and electron emission that takes into account field enhancement, space-charge, and varying electron affinity effects on rough surfaces. Commercial applications and other benefits The proposed new modeling capabilities will aid researchers in developing electron sources that meet or exceed the desired operational parameters for future DOE facilities. This project will produce commercial quality software, including a state-of-the-art graphical user interface, and will increase Vorpal’s capability to generate further commercial revenue as it finds use in the industrial design of reliable and durable high quantum efficiency photocathodes. In addition, Field Emitter Array manufacturers can create increasingly accurate models with the developed tools


Grant
Agency: Department of Energy | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase II | Award Amount: 1.01M | Year: 2016

To elucidate the mysterious origins of nuclear spin, the Nuclear Science Advisory Committee (NSAC) has identified the science of electron-ion colliders, and specifically a proposed polarized electron-ion collider, as “absolutely central to U.S. science”. Such machines, estimated to cost as much as $500M–$1B, will require polarized particle beams; and high polarization improves experimental efficiency. To reduce the risk associated with building these machines, and to ensure the desired high polarization, scientists need accurate simulations of the spin dynamics. While codes exist for simulating spin dynamics in particle accelerators, none include a realistic, self-consistent treatment of the beam-beam interaction. In the context of electron-ion colliders, this interaction can have a profound effect on the electron beam polarization. It is therefore essential that scientists develop a realistic understanding of how the beam-beam interaction will affect machine performance. Statement of how this problem is being addressed We will couple together the capabilities of two separate codes: one capable of performing fast spin-orbit tracking in storage rings, and another capable of self-consistent 3D simulations of the beam-beam interaction. The latter code will be extended so that it also tracks the spin degrees of freedom for particles in a simulation. We will couple both inputs and outputs of these two codes, so that scientists can study in detail the effect of multi-pass beam-beam collisions on the polarisation of both beams in a given design for an electron-ion collider. What is to be done in the Phase I During the Phase I project, we will take a code that is capable of self-consistent 3D beam-beam simulations and extend it to include the spin degrees of freedom and also implement spin integration. We will identify how best to connect the input and output streams of this code and a traditional spin-orbit tracking code so that scientists can perform multi-pass simulations. And we will implement a simple version of a particle-field updater as a prototype for simulating laser-gain media. Commercial applications and other benefits The proposed software development will directly benefit scientists working to design the electron-ion collider required for fundamental advances in experimental nuclear physics. In addition, the work done to include spin integration in the beam-beam simulations can be further extended so as to simulate the dynamics of laser gain media. This new software capability will significantly extend the range of lasers that can be simulated, and it will have particular relevance to the simulation of both high-power and short-pulse-length lasers.

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