---------- DTRA ----------

6 Phase I Selections from the 03.1 Solicitation

(In Topic Number Order)
NOVA SCIENTIFIC, INC.
660 Main Street, P.O. Box 928
Sturbridge, MA 01566
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(508) 347-7679
Mr. W. Bruce Feller
DTRA 03-003       Selected for Award
Title:Large Area Neutron Counter Array
Abstract:NOVA Scientific will demonstrate a large-area/low-cost neutron detection system having high detector quantum efficiency and high signal-to noise ratio. The approach utilizes an embedded neutron absorber in a solid state detector, utilizing known processing technology. The system detects fissionable materials by converting the neutron signal into a large electron pulse. The unit is light for field deployment and assembly as a stand-alone unit. The modular approach permits tiling into large arrays for monitoring of thoroughfares and ports of entry having high volume traffic of cargo containers or trucks. The large area solid state unit can be flight certified and provides a substantially lower-cost alternative to 3He detectors. The proposed system will detect small quantities of special nuclear materials concealed in containers at port of entry, airports, and highway and city drive-throughs. Sensor arrays are two-man portable, relatively inexpensive, mass produced, can be flight certified, and can be tiled into large areas. The modular unit can be self-contained with automatic signal processing electronics. Applications include Homeland Defense, Military Security, and monitoring of clandestine materials.

PHYSICAL SCIENCES, INC.
20 New England Business Center
Andover, MA 01810
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(703) 437-7294
Dr. Willi G. Schwarz
DTRA 03-003       Awarded: 7/8/03
Title:Man-Portable, High-Resolution Gamma-Ray Spectrometer
Abstract:The detection and identification of threats due to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) or associated special materials is of increasing importance to national security. The goal of the proposed program is to develop a man-portable, battery-operated gamma-ray spectrometer for the high-resolution characterization of the hidden contents of sealed containers, including nuclear, radiological, and chemical materials from which weapons of mass destruction could be developed or assembled. The gamma-ray spectrometer will employ a semiconductor crystal detector combined with novel cooling technology. This advanced spectrometer will provide significant advantages in comparison to conventional, electromechanically cooled instruments, including smaller weight and overall size, no microphonics, and operation using rechargeable batteries. In Phase I, measurements of both cooling and resulting detection performance will demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed technology. In Phase II, a man-portable prototype spectrometer will be developed and demonstrated in field tests. The gamma-ray spectrometer to be developed in this program will be man-portable in the field, and provide high-resolution spectral analysis of the hidden contents of sealed containers. Potential commercial applications include all areas that require security inspection and/or safeguarding of special nuclear and radiological materials, including arms control treaty verification, counter-proliferation and counter-terrorism operations, surveillance and screening for homeland security, as well as object and event monitoring at borders, ports, and facilities.

HY-TECH RESEARCH CORP.
104 Centre Ct.
Radford, VA 24141
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(540) 639-4019
Dr. Robert C. Hazelton
DTRA 03-005       Selected for Award
Title:Heterdyne Interferometer for Triggering Gas Puff PRSs
Abstract:Large X-ray generators using gas fill loads are a key element in the DTRA simulator program. Consistent relative timing between the injection of the gas shell and the generator current pulse is crucial to producing consistent, high-yield x-ray pulses. To that end HY-Tech proposes replacing existing high voltage trigger pin technology, with a sensitive, all fiber-optic heterodyne interferometer based trigger generator. The innovative features include the implementation of an all fiber optic system in conjunction with a novel load cell to increase sensitivity and reduce noise susceptibility. In addition to acting as a trigger source, the interferometer will posses all the usual capabilities of a heterodyne system. It will provide an absolute time history of the gas puff which can then be manipulated to give an axial line density profile for each simulator shot. It will also provide a measure of the preionization level and well as the early electron density buildup during the generator pulse. This program should take the interferometer from the status of a research tool to a standard diagnostic device which can be easily and routinely installed and used on simulators throughout the DTRA community. The benefits anticipated for DTRA programs is to produce a more reliable and efficient simulator technology using gas puff loads. This will come about in two ways. The first is to provide a consistent trigger source. The second is to provide a data base on the shot-to-shot consistency of puff valve technology and initial conditions for each shot. Commercially, the proposed technology may well posses the sensitivity and robustness for application in many venues requiring mass flow control. Specific areas include airliner fuel control and petroleum pipelines.

STRUCTURED MATERIALS INDUSTRIES
Suite 103, 201 Circle Drive
Piscataway, NJ 08854
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(732) 885-5909
Mr. Joseph Cuchiaro
DTRA 03-005       Selected for Award
Title:A Single Event Upset Immune Re-Programmable FPGA Utilizing a Commercial Architecture
Abstract:Radiation tolerant Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA's) have gained wide and rapid acceptance by military and aerospace equipment suppliers; however, there are presently a limited number of chip-sets available for production. The lack of FPGA alternatives severely limits the range of available functions and applications that would greatly benefit from increased performance with radiation hardness. Further, FPGA technology that can be produced from common mass production techniques is highly sought after for significant cost savings on a per unit basis. We propose to use our newly invented radiation tolerant high temperature non-linear dielectric to develop a Single Event Upset (SEU) immune re-programmable and nonvolatile logic device, a small FPGA, that is immune to SEU events. In Phase I we will show proof of our high temperature non-linear dielectric proof of concept and in Phase II we will optimize the technology for prototype demonstration in a commercial manufacturing environment using common mass production techniques, and demonstrate packaged device functionality for use in radiation environments. Phase III will be product introduction to the military and commercial space markets. A ferroelectric Field Re-Programmable Gate Array has significant potential to replace existing "one time" programmable logic devices with increased functionality in a nonvolatile element. These radiation hardened devices will directly address an annual military market of approximately $250M as well as be applicable to an approximate commercial Programmable Logic Device (PLD) annual market of over $1B.

CIENCIA, INC.
111 Roberts Street, Suite K
East Hartford, CT 06108
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(860) 528-9737
Dr. Salvador M. Fernandez
DTRA 03-008       Selected for Award
Title:Integrated Protein/Nucleic Acid Microarray CB Detector
Abstract:The objective of the proposed program is to develop a portable, low-cost, label-free (reagentless), microarray system capable of near real-time simultaneous detection and identification of multiple analytes (bacteria, viruses, spores, toxins) with high sensitivity and low false alarm rate. Notably, the system will be capable of detection/identification of agents on the basis of protein and/or nucleic acid recognition. The system will consist of a disposable biosensor chip and an optical reader device with an integrated sample collector. Detection is based on a proprietary optical transduction technology known as grating-coupled surface plasmon resonance imaging. In the Phase I effort we will demonstrate the operation of the collector and detection/identification components and perform a preliminary specification and design of a system to be built and tested in a Phase II effort. The proposed technology is dual use. Potential applications include hospitals, where nosocomial infections may arise; large buildings where accidental contamination with mold spores, Legionella and other pathogens may create health hazards; recreational water and drinking water supplies where waterborne pathogens are a great concern, and the food industry, where there is a need for sensitive methods for on-line and real-time detection of pathogens.

FRACTAL SYSTEMS, INC.
200 9th Avenue North, Suite 100
Safety Harbor, FL 34695
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(727) 723-3006
Dr. Anastassia Bogomolova
DTRA 03-008       Selected for Award
Title:Direct Electrochemical Biowarfare Sensor
Abstract:We propose to develop a prototype for direct electrochemical DNA sensor, using oligonucleotide-doped conductive polymer electrode. Phase I is dedicated to development and characterization of smallpox-specific DNA sensor. Stability, sensitivity, selectivity, reproducibility of DNA detection by the prototype electrode will be characterized with regards to both oligonucleotide- and double stranded DNA- targets, containing specific sequence of smallpox virus. Optimization towards higher sensitivity and faster detection time will be performed. In future efforts, the prototype can be adapted to detection of any warfare agent of bacterial or viral nature by choosing the specificity of oligonucleotide dopants. It will be possible to use an array of such electrodes with designed specificities for simultaneous detection of multiple warfare agents. Direct specie-specific biowarfare sensors will have a great potential for detection of minute amounts of a variety of biowarfare agents, if and when an attack on military targets or the general population takes place by a rogue nation or a terrorist group, immediately after their use. Using our approach, these sensors will be highly selective for the detection of multiple biowarfare agents with a high sensitivity. They will have a versatile design as they would be miniaturized in a credit card or badge-like format.