---------- DARPA ----------

47 Phase I Selections from the 09.2 Solicitation

(In Topic Number Order)
ELORET
465 S. Mathilda Ave., Suite 100
Sunnyvale, CA 94086
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(650) 604-3958
Cattien Nguyen
DARPA 09-001      Awarded: 2/10/2010
Title:Nanotechnology-enhanced High-efficient Miniaturized Energy Harvesting Systems
Abstract:Performance of conventional primary and secondary batteries improve at a meager rate every year. Sensors and sensor networks which are advancing through relentless miniaturization effects need uninterrupted power sources in many scenarios. We propose to use a piezoelectric based energy scavenging device to harvest energy from environmental vibrations. Although a handful of structures by a few groups have demonstrated that ZnO nanowires have great promise for energy harvesting devices, the few schemes that have demonstrated the energy harvesting in these nanowires have been mainly laboratory experiments performed with an atomic force microscope top or a fiber coated with the ZnO nanowires on which a pulling force is exerted. The proposed work is very necessary to develop more robust schemes that may easily translate to non- laboratory based packages with miniaturized sensors. Phase I will evaluate piezoelectric properties of nanowires of ZnO, GaN, lithium niobate, and PZT design for embedding the nanowire into a softer host matrix to be able to withstand high strains and design a mechanical to energy coupling mechanism with plans to produce a prototype for Phase II.

Harp Engineering LLC (formerly Sodano Engineering
1716 South Sycamore
Mesa, AZ 85202
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(480) 839-1236
Saul Opie
DARPA 09-001      Awarded: 2/9/2010
Title:Ultra-High Energy Density Piezoelectric Nanocomposites for Lightweight Power Harvesting Micro-Systems
Abstract:The proposed phase I research effort will develop a highly efficient MEMS energy harvesters that utilize a novel nanocomposite technology recently developed by Sodano Engineering LLC. Unlike existing piezoelectric nanocomposites, the material proposed here has an electromechanical coupling coefficient higher than the monolithic piezoceramics typically used in MEMS processing. The high coupling is achieved through the use of single crystal PZT nanowires which more effectively couple with the polymer matrix and lead to more than an order of magnitude improvement over existing nanocomposites. This nanocomposite technology will be further developed and will be used to create bimorph power harvesters that capitalize of the fracture toughness of the polymer matrix to offer robustness to damage for use in harsh battlefield conditions. The nanocomposite will also lead to resonators with significantly lower natural frequencies than silicon technologies, which will allow more efficient energy conversion at the frequencies typically available for harvesting. At the conclusion of the phase I effort a micro-scale energy harvester will be produced to demonstrate the system performance. We will seek to commercialize all three technologies developed under this contract, namely the piezoelectric nanowires, the nanocomposites and the energy harvesters to maximize the commercial impact of the work.

AEgis Technologies Group, Inc.
631 Discovery Drive
Huntsville, AL 35806
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(256) 922-0802
Milan Buncick
DARPA 09-002      Awarded: 1/28/2010
Title:Photonic Band Gap Structures for Solar Energy Generation
Abstract:The demand for renewable energy is motivating R&D efforts toward the development of novel photovoltaic (PV) technology. Efficient and low cost solar cells will have an important role in defense applications particularly powering portable electronic devices. Current solar cells based on single crystal silicon are still not at a level to be cost effective when compared to other forms of electrical generation. The path forward is the development of new concepts in both materials and design that enables the fabrication of high-efficiency, cost-effective solar cells. A powerful approach to improving PV efficiency is to concentrate the light in such a way that the density of photons hitting the cell is substantially increased. This can be achieved by fabricating a plasmonic resonance cavity over each cell. The plasmonic structures make use of local field enhancement to concentrate photons at the PV junction. These junctions can then be stacked, as has been demonstrated previously, to convert photons over the full solar spectrum. The wideband PV devices with plasmonic concentrators can be built using thin-film technology, which will provide a low-cost and highly efficient solar energy source. AEgis will model, design, fabricate and test wideband PV devices with plasmonic resonance cavities.

Phoebus Optoelectronics LLC
12 Desbrosses Street
New York, NY 10013
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(845) 519-7463
Michael Crouse
DARPA 09-002      Awarded: 2/10/2010
Title:Photonic Band Gap Structures for Solar Energy Generation
Abstract:In Phase I, Phoebus Optoelectronics will assess the feasibility of using the diverse light management capabilities of plasmonic metamaterials in conjunction with functionalized ruthenium polypyridine compounds to create a novel multi-junction dye-sensitized solar cell that rivals the industry-leading efficiencies of vertically-stacked multi-junction cells but exhibits the much cheaper fabrication economics of single-junction thin film cells. The solar cells to be developed will use cavity modes within subwavelength periodic structures to create light "whirlpool" effects that steer and channel different wavelengths of an incident beam into different spatial areas of a single light-absorbing layer. This layer will be pixelated with periodically-arrayed cavities containing tailored ruthenium polypyridine complexes, the action spectra of which are tuned to absorb light of the wavelength that is steered toward those particular cavities. With such a design, it is possible to absorb >80% of an incoming beam across multiple regions of the solar spectrum within a single-layer device.

Imperium, Inc.
5901-F Ammendale Road
Beltsville, MD 20705
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(301) 431-2900
Marvin Lasser
DARPA 09-003      Awarded: 1/28/2010
Title:A Multimodel Imaging Device for Diagnosis of Traumatic Brain Injury
Abstract:Traumatic brain injury has been designated the “signature wound” of the Iraq war due to its prevalence. Over 43,000 cases of combat related TBI have been documented from 2003 through 2007. TBI is divided into two categories: primary and secondary. Primary injury in most cases is obvious. Secondary or closed brain injury however may exhibit no external markers and subtle symptoms. Current diagnostic techniques for secondary brain injury include surgical procedures and computed tomography, neither is feasible in a combat environment. Imperium Inc. and Infrascan Inc. together propose a handheld, real time, multimodel imaging device to meet the need for a battlefield imaging device to detect changes in intracranial pressure resulting from TBI. Recent research has identified ocular sonography with measurement of the optic nerve sheath diameter (ONSD) as a reliable predictor of increased ICP. Imperium proposes that its ultrasound technology with clarity of imagery and ease of use provides a unique capability for the measurement of ONSD. The efficacy of Infrascan’s NIR technology in detecting intracranial hematomas has been proven in a large scale clinical trial. Imperium proposes to integrate these two proven technologies into a single imaging device to provide a comprehensive diagnostic tool for the field surgeon.

Progeny Systems Corporation
9500 Innovation Drive
Manassas, VA 20110
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(703) 368-6107
John Sevick
DARPA 09-003      Awarded: 2/18/2010
Title:Non-Invasive Ultrasonic Intracranial Pressure Measurement
Abstract:Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is the leading cause of death and disability for ages 1 to 44. TBI results in 50,000 deaths, 90,000 survivors suffering permanent neurological disabilities, and $40B in health care costs annually. Insurgents’ use of suicide bombers and IEDs has sharply increased the proportion of TBIs suffered by American troops, making it the “signature wound” in recent conflicts. TBI is difficult to diagnose, treat, and monitor in the field, with no external indication of the internal brain injuries. Rapid detection and treatment of TBI is critical in preventing further damage or death. Computerized axial tomography (CT) is the “gold standard” non-invasive method to determine the degree of cerebral injury, but is not suitable for field. Elevated Intracranial Pressure (ICP), above 20mm HG, is often the most direct, initial result of TBI. However, traditional invasive ICP measurements are also not possible in the field. In conjunction with Virginia Commonwealth University Medical System, Progeny proposes to investigate three non-invasive methods to measure ICP: Ultrasonic image of the optical nerve sheath diameter, Intra-ocular pressure, and a novel ultrasonic sound attenuation technique. Phase I will include prototype data collection system development for deployment in Phase II ICU and ED patient studies.

UtopiaCompression, Corporation
11150 W. Olympic Blvd. Suite 680
Los Angeles, CA 90064
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(310) 473-1500
Jacob Yadegar
DARPA 09-003      Awarded: 2/9/2010
Title:An Automated Real-time Screening System with Decision-support Capabilities for Swift Traumatic Brain Injury Detection in Military Personnel
Abstract:We propose to develop a portable, ultrasound-based imaging solution for accurate screening and real-time monitoring of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in both war and non- combat scenarios. This system will offer reliable and robust on-site analysis using an in- built decision-support framework to efficiently detect TBI in triage situations. Current ultrasound-based techniques detect TBI using a surrogate estimate of elevated intracranial pressure (EICP), i.e., the optical nerve sheath (ONS) diameter measurement with high sensitivity but low specificity. The low specificity limits the metric’s application for reliable screening. As phase I deliverables, we propose i) novel EICP predictors such as ONS pressure, as well as additional auxiliary non-invasive sensing modes for cerebral blood flow and blood oxygen content measurements, ii) novel 3D morphometric analysis of ONS, iii) an automated method for ONSD and ONSP measurement, and iv) a complete software prototype for US image analysis, 3D volume modeling and analysis incorporating i)-iii) above. The decision-support system will improve TBI classification by incorporating accurate on-site measurements that accounts for individual baseline variations and monitors temporal manifestation of TBI. In summary, this knowledge-driven system will equip a novice or a trained DOD medic with an easy-to-use, rapid and automated screening tool to improve TBI prognosis.

Advanced Anti-Terror Technologies Corp. (A2T2)
896 W Minneola Ave Suite 57
Clermont, FL 34711
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(703) 373-0433
Martin LaHart
DARPA 09-004      Awarded: 2/9/2010
Title:The Automated Control of Complex Tasks in Animals
Abstract:The aims and opportunities of our Automated Control Enhancement(ACE) modules are enabling of automated training of complex tasks in animals; innovative new remote tele- presence/robot/canine operational teams; and, ultimately, entirely new classes and types of augmented-reality enhanced canines. Initial canine screening, selection, and early-skill acquisition are most efficiently performed within ACE add-on modules fitted to existing portable containers where the target scent detection and other complex tasks are performed within our tightly controlled environment, with tactile, audio, and video cues in addition to conventional obstacles and realistic search conditions. Automated, repetitive, consistent leading and reinforcement of complex tasks along with automated performance measures drastically reduce the human experts’ participation in hours and costs. ACE add-on modules can also be used in field training and, ultimately, operational scenarios. Existing canine realistic training methods can be augmented with ACE modules, enabling seamless progression to operational scenarios. Specifically envisioned are tele-presence and automated control progressions from within portable containers, to in-the-field conditions, to remote control operational scenarios with robots, and, ultimately, animal- wearable ACE-modules. Beyond our initial focus on canine complex tasks and operational enhancements, we envision reuse of our successful innovations for other species of animals, again progressing from portable structure training, tele-presence remote symbiotic partner(s), and, eventually, animal-wearable, augmented-reality symbiotic enhancements.

MediaBalance, Inc.
800 Northgate Dr.
East Lansing, MI 48823
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(517) 333-0266
Alejandro Terrazas
DARPA 09-004      Awarded: 1/28/2010
Title:Behavioral MANET for the Automated Control of Complex Tasks in Animals
Abstract:This Phase I SBIR is for the testing of a mobile ad hoc networking (MANET) platform to automate the training of animals to perform complex tasks. The technology will reduce the labor involved in training animals using MANETs of embedded devices that can be flexibly configured and monitored via Internet. The technology is built around the principles of behavior engineering. Behavioral sensing, prompting, and reinforcement are uncoupled, conferring many advantages. Humans can act as sensors when automated sensors are not available. Data management and adherence to reinforcement schedules are made easier through automation. New sensors are easily added to the MANET. The project begins with technology previously designed for human behavior modification and is led by a PI who is a neural psychologist with deep experience in advanced technology development, behavioral training of animals, and the brain-behavior basis of learning and memory. The Phase I experimental plan is to (a) built and test prototypes, (b) test reliability and system operability in a setting approximating intended use, and (c) conduct experiments with n=3 rats. Phase II will expand upon Phase I by validating a wider variety of MANET devices and tasks with a larger set of animal subjects and species.

Traclabs, Inc.
100 Northeast Loop 410 Suite 520
San Antonio, TX 78216
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(281) 461-7884
Robert Burridge
DARPA 09-005      Awarded: 2/10/2010
Title:Visually Guided Robotic Hand / Eye Coordination
Abstract:There are many mundane tasks that humans – even children – perform easily, yet are unattainable by current robotic systems. These include dexterous manipulation in unstructured environments, where the exact location and characteristics of the objects are not known a priori, such as picking fruit or doing dishes. Recent years have seen many advances in both robotic manipulation and machine vision. Robots pick-and-place electronic components faster than the eye can see, and vision systems routinely inspect products hundreds of times per minute. Despite this, robotic and vision systems remain highly specialized in tightly controlled environments. We need a way to integrate these separate capabilities into a single closed-loop system. We will produce dexterous hand- eye coordination by focusing on four major subsystems: A vision system capable of identifying and localizing target objects in real-time, a hand capable of manipulating the objects, an arm capable of positioning the hand to the desired location, and a control system able to coordinate the other systems. TRACLabs has experience with all four of these areas, and is capable of integrating them into a unified system. In fact, TRACLabs scientists have already done this for NASA’s humanoid Robonaut to perform tool-use tasks similar to those in the solicitation.

UtopiaCompression, Corporation
11150 W. Olympic Blvd. Suite 680
Los Angeles, CA 90064
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(310) 473-1500
Niyant Krishnamurthi
DARPA 09-005      Awarded: 1/5/2010
Title:Design for Dexterity
Abstract:The intelligence and the adaptability to perform unexpected tasks with minimal training will be the key to robotic systems in the future. Improving machine intelligence will require a versatile and powerful sub system for controlling the manipulators. The intelligent control of the robotic arm cannot be designed for a narrow spectrum of tasks. The system architecture should allow complex tasks to be incrementally built upon the existing system. Innovation in both the robotic hardware and the planning algorithms will be required in next generation robotic manipulators capable of adapting to changing environments. In this project UtopiaCompression (UC) with our collaborators will design a humanoid robotic hand manipulator capable of both fine and coarse control. The robotic hand design is drawn from the synergistic biomechanics of the human hand. The multi- objective motion planning also imitates the human capability of concurrent task execution. The control architecture software will be layered with a clear abstraction between the task level intelligence and algorithms specific to the control of the arm-hand system. The design philosophy is to allow the system to be flexible to support the different requirements of real world tasks.

Vecna Technologies Inc.
6404 Ivy Lane Suite 500
Greenbelt, MD 20770
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(617) 864-0636
Andreas Hofmann
DARPA 09-005      Awarded: 2/9/2010
Title:Visually Guided Robotic Hand / Eye Coordination
Abstract:The term “robot,” coined by Karel Capek in the play R.U.R., implies “compulsory labor,” yet most mobile robots in existence today are only capable of the lightest of labor. Of course, a robot is just a pile of parts without the advanced perception, planning, and control systems needed to make it perform useful work reliably in an unstructured environment. When done correctly, however, it will yield the “Universal Worker” that Capek envisioned 90 years ago. The need for such a universal worker robot is compelling and the opportunities for application of the technology are endless, from exploring and manipulating hazardous environments to sorting inventory, or eventually even construction. Vecna proposes a prototype robotic system based on numerous innovations from ongoing research in hydraulics, perception, planning and controls that will be able to adequately perform the specified tasks (type, drum, juggle, use tools, and thread a needle). The hypothesis to be tested is that a hydraulics-based robotic system can achieve the strength, dexterity, maneuverability, speed, and precision that are called for in this solicitation when integrated with an advanced robotic vision and planning control system.

AltaSim Technologies, LLC
130 East Wilson Bridge Road
Worthington, OH 43085
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(614) 861-7015
Jeffrey Crompton
DARPA 09-006      Awarded: 2/1/2010
Title:Digital Analysis Computing Software Solutions for the Supply Chain
Abstract:Electrical circuit designers at Tier 2-4 suppliers to the Department of Defense (DoD) are currently using desktop computing to design their products. To improve the circuit design in the DoD supply chain, designers will need to be able to analyze their circuits with High Performance Computing resources. Designers seeking to innovate their circuits must have access to HPC facilities that maintain circuit analysis software written for HPC architecture. In addition, this access must be simple, convenient, and have a low total cost to the meet the needs of design engineers at Tier 2-4 suppliers. This work will demonstrate the technical and market feasibility of circuit analysis on HPC by combining existing circuit analysis software written for HPC resources and a new portal for access these resources.

Harmonia, Inc.
2020 Kraft Drive, Suite 1000
Blacksburg, VA 24060
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(540) 951-5901
Marc Abrams
DARPA 09-006      Awarded: 1/7/2010
Title:Digital Analysis Computing Software Solutions for the Supply Chain
Abstract:Harmonia addresses challenge area 3 in DARPA Phase I SBIR topic DARPA 09-006, Digital Analysis Computing Software (DACS) Solutions for the Supply Chain: software application distribution solutions. Harmonia is proposing to accelerate a fundamental historical transformation in the way the world does science and engineering through CognitiveCodeBook. We propose the application of cognitive computing in a new way to reduce the barriers of tier 2 and 3 suppliers to use high performance computing and DACS. We seek to transform what is now a slow, human-to-human process of information transfer when writing or using DACS codes to a human-to-machine process. The work is done in partnership with supercomputing centers so that CognitiveCodeBook can be tailored to the needs of developers and users. The state of the art today is for the people involved to (1) take the time locate the necessary information through some combination of people and electronic resources, and (2) manually create the needed configurations to create or use DACS. Our goal is to cut the time for both steps by 50% by letting CognitiveCodeBook synthesize and maintain configurations.

Nimbis Services Inc.
1616 Anderson Road, Suite 100
McLean, VA 22102
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(703) 286-0770
Jaroslav Flidr
DARPA 09-006      Awarded: 2/1/2010
Title:Software Portal Hosting, Distribution & Brokerage Service
Abstract:Nimbis Services Inc. proposes to provide a software portal hosting, distribution and access infrastructure integrated with Nimbis Services’s current brokerage service that will broaden the use of digital analysis computing or model based simulation by tier 2-4 supply chain manufacturers. The goal is to encourage the development of new model based simulations applications and domain specific portals by entrepreneurs and increase accessibility/use of this new infrastructure capability by supply chain users. This will be accomplished by providing a new commercial service capability built on Nimbis Services existing core brokerage technology with a user supportive environment for hosting domain specific portals, developing/hosting emerging model based simulation applications, and e-commerce distribution system with a special focus on underserved periodic and experimental industry user communities.

Bashpole, Inc.
541 S. 27th St.
Philadelphia, PA 19146
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(215) 760-1613
Benjamin Ashpole
DARPA 09-007      Awarded: 1/27/2010
Title:Mashalator
Abstract:Several concerns currently inflate the time and cost of integrating heterogeneous data resources and impose a barrier to superior knowledge of the urban battlespace: global data standards cannot be imposed across all enterprises’ schemas, specialized expertise is required to map new data sources into existing ontologies, and some data resources are not intranet accessible by default. In this Phase I SBIR project for DARPA, Bashpole Inc. will design and demonstrate the feasibility of Mashalator, a database translator appliance for integrated exploitation. Mashalator will enable administrators to incorporate new data resources onto enterprise networks in a tenth of the time normally required for setting up database translators and provide relatively untrained personnel with a no- coding process to create queries that derive actionable intelligence for urban spaces. This will be achieved with highly automated mapping, bounded mapping effort, bounded answer scope, and bounded answer quality on a physical device with a software system that can be attached to fielded machines. In Phase I, Bashpole will investigate viability and design approaches of the proposed exploitation technology, validate the design through experimentation in the laboratory with real data, and evaluate potential benefts.

Next Generation Software
52 Strawtown Road
New City, NY 10956
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(845) 633-3766
Len Yabloko
DARPA 09-007      Awarded: 2/23/2010
Title:Database Translator (DATALATOR) for Integrated Exploitation
Abstract:Proposed is a method and technology for implementing core functions of Database Translator (DATALATOR) for Integrated Exploitation in dynamic context of the urban warfighter. The focus is on providing tangible means for data users to be directly involved in meeting their operational objectives. The proposed innovative method of information integration automates dicovery of semantic model that best represents the intended use of data in the data source. This is achieved by presenting a user with hypotetical process reflected in the flow of data. Each hypothesis is based on a possible chain of events. The offeror presents a prof-of-concept (TRL 3) implementation and preliminary empirical resuts in support of the proposed method. This followed by suggested conceptual architecture for DATALATOR and a desing of experimental prototype (TRL 4) to be built during Phase I – from publically available components. Finnnaly, a detailed set of experiments is proposed for rigorous quantitative evaluation of the prototype during Phase I – base on data and benchamarks obtained from a recent study of analogous experimental prototype in major US university, as well as more comprehensive empirical evaluation designed and conducted jointly with major Canadian university.

Pragati Synergetic Research, Inc.
914 Liberty Ct.
Cupertino, CA 95014
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(650) 625-0274
Mala Mehrotra
DARPA 09-007      Awarded: 1/14/2010
Title:Expoze-DATALATOR for Integrated Exploitation of Data
Abstract:In this project, we will develop an infrastructure, Expozé-DATALATOR, by extending our existing Expozé tool suite for discovery of mapping relationships. In addition, in order to realize our goals for building effective transformation routines for the Expozé-discovered mappings, we will utilize the fuselet development support environment of Apollo – a Rome Labs-developed JBI (Joint Battlespace Infosphere) reference implementation to test emerging integration technologies for dynamic air operations planning and scheduling. We propose to demonstrate the feasibility of crafting mapping ontologies as an abstract layer over JBI information object types through Expozé-DATALATOR’s framework. The proposed mappings will be authored in a high-level language such as OWL/CL and will unfold as XSLT-based transformations underneath the hood. We will also provide a graphical front-end for authoring the complex relationships such that the information transformation components of the JBI can be made much more generic and reusable. These components will be useful for composition into information transformation modules that operate over various relationships from several datasets, thus obviating the need to hard code the mappings into each and every transformation program. Intelligence operations can thus utilize the relationships-based information generated by Expozé- DATALATOR to compare the expected effects of ongoing operations with the actual effects observed during operations so that commanders can reorient and adapt their future actions quickly. We will utilize Apollo’s benchmarks to test out the efficacy of our joint technologies.

Camgian Microsystems Corporation
2500 Maitland Center Parkway Suite 203
Maitland, FL 32751
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(407) 660-9900
Lief Sorensen
DARPA 09-008      Awarded: 1/20/2010
Title:Integrated UGS and UAV Networks for Enabling Persistent ISR
Abstract:In today’s asymmetric warfare, the warfighter relies on technological advantages to enable them to identify, track and monitor targets of interest, to distinguish between combatants and non-combatants, and to do this in rugged and isolated areas. There is a need for both long term surveillance of chokepoints, caves, and critical infrastructure, as well as short term tracking and validation of targets. Existing UGS systems can provide the long term surveillance but have limited detection/monitoring range. UAVs can provide tracking and improved look angles at targets, but have very limited mission lifespans. This program seeks to push the limits of state-of-the-art, demonstrating the ability to provide a multi-tiered sensor system that: • Uses UGS to initially detect suspects; • Communicates the key features of the target (e.g., size, position, direction and rate of travel) to a remote UAV base (or loitering UAV that might be covering a broad area); • Vectors a UAV to the target’s location, where the UAV acquires potential targets and discriminates targets based on the information from the UGS system to support a robust target re-acquisition.

McQ Inc.
1551 Forbes St.
Fredericksburg, VA 22405
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(540) 373-2374
Barry Jones
DARPA 09-008      Awarded: 1/20/2010
Title:Integrated UGS and UAV Networks for Enabling Persistent ISR
Abstract:McQ Inc. is a leading provider of high performance, advanced technology unattended ground sensor (UGS) systems. Our research spans two decades of investigating technologies suitable for automatically detecting, classifying, identifying, imaging, and tracking targets in remote regions. In this SBIR project, we will develop an UGS system specifically tailored for integration with existing and planned UAV ISR systems. Our investigations will lay the groundwork for the engineering that leads to a fully functional and operational prototype system. The UGS system will be integrated to and demonstrated with a UAV imaging system. The program will demonstrate the ability of the integrated systems to effectively detect, classify, identify, image and track targets within the airborne imagery using UGS systems with very long life (years).

Numerica Corporation
4850 Hahns Peak Drive Suite 200
Loveland, CO 80538
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(937) 427-9725
Juan Vasquez
DARPA 09-008      Awarded: 2/8/2010
Title:Network Centric Tracking for Integrated UGS and UAV Networks
Abstract:The use of unmanned assets both on the ground and in the air are proving effective as semi-autonomous ISR platforms. While unmanned ground systems (UGSs) can provide stable, close-in, and persistent capabilities, unmanned air vehicles (UAVs) provide flexibility for wide area search missions and geometrically diverse viewing angles for the sensors. The primary focus of this proposed research is to harness the relative strengths of these assets in a networked ISR configuration for the purpose of persistent wide area surveillance to include tracking and imagery support for human analysts. A system will be developed to incorporate sensor imagery into the navigation solution for the UAV through precise geolocation methods leading to more accurate 3D track data. Numerica's extensive experience with network-centric tracking and 3D feature aiding will be leveraged to develop a robust tracking solution. The Phase I effort will culminate in a demonstration and proof of concept of the above items using a high-fidelity simulation environment. Furthermore, a development path will be presented that will lead to a hardware implementation for the proof of concept with real sensors and data in Phase II.

AventuSoft L.L.C.
8995 Chambers Street
Tamarac, FL 33321
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(352) 871-6567
Agustin Roca
DARPA 09-009      Awarded: 1/11/2010
Title:Acoustic Source Separation and Localization
Abstract:The Phase I research project will develop a bio-inspired acoustic source separation, localization and tracking algorithm called PreservEar. Separation of speech signals from an auditory scene, often referred to as the cocktail party problem, has been studied for decades. Current source separation solutions suffer from six major problems: (1) source localization and tracking is not very robust; (2) intensive signal processing needs; (3) many separation methods require at least as many sensors as sources; (4) many require the number of signals within the recorded mixtures be known in advance; (5) do not perform real-time under real life conditions well; (6) large power consumption needs. This limits their deployment on small embedded devices. The intellectual merits of PreservEar are that it addresses these issues by providing a solution that fuses novel computational auditory scene analysis algorithm with robust localization-tracking developed with singular focus of having a single package solution that is effective, compact, light, practical and easy to use. System developed will have low memory, low computational and low power need; use only two microphones, and run in real-time on off-the shelf devices like Bluetooth headsets. Continued objective is to also use device for hearing loss restoration and hearing loss prevention.

Cole Engineering Services, Inc.
3361 Rouse Rd. Suite 215
Orlando, FL 32817
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(407) 384-9956
Rich Gombos
DARPA 09-009      Awarded: 1/6/2010
Title:Acoustic Source Separation and Localization
Abstract:This is a proposal to determine the technical feasibility of a system capable of separating and localizing intermixed sounds in an auditory scene. Our approach will be to design and develop a computational auditory model that overcomes the inherent theoretical limits of the classic Fourier-based model. Phase I effort will produce a requirements specification and design documentation for the lower two levels of a five level computational auditory model, and include source code for the system components that we make operational. The (five level) objective system consists of the implementation of a real-time model capable of waveform analysis analogous to that of the human ear. We call it the Waveform Information Vector (WIV) to Time-Space Translator, or “ WIVEX” processor. Preliminary experiments have demonstrated the feasibility of parts of the model to encode and extract, in real time, meaningful information directly from the signal waveform. For example it can separate environmental sounds of all kinds, including speech, while determining their individual direction of arrival. Our Phase I research objectives are to: formalize the requirements and design specifications for a real-time system, through analysis, design and prototyping of components. Phase I will conclude with the delivery of necessary artifacts and demonstration of specific auditory functions (see Table 1) that are not now and probably never will be achievable with Fourier-based technology. All demonstrations are intended to run in real time, synchronously with the input signal. Table 1: Phase I Auditory Functions 1) Pitch detection in both speech and music, or any other tonal acoustic source 2) Instantaneous direction of arrival used to separate sound sources via binaural perception 3) Instantaneous monaural separation of sources by recognizing patterns in waveshape zero intervals 4) Phonetic segmentation of speech and environmental sources by pattern similarities 5) Meaningful labeling of waveshape components 6) Replication of psychoacoustic experiments in two-tone interference not explainable in current auditory theory 7) Demonstration of autonomic source selection according to attention priority from background of mixed signal sources Collectively, successful completion of these tasks should go a long way toward confirming the technical feasibility of the WIVEX as the basis of a more relevant auditory model. As such, this could produce a compelling theory for understanding the biophysical functions in the auditory pathways of not just humans but the entire animal kingdom. It will be shown that the operational functions and processing components of this model are analogous to neurological capabilities and merely require fundamental algorithms and mathematical computations. The proposed model is somewhat analogous to the auditory system of the animal kingdom in that it is built as an evolutionary hierarchy of processing levels that begin at a low level by extracting primitive meaning such as direction of arrival, amplitude, and encoded simple waveshape features. It then progresses upward in five stages of cognitive perception and culminates in complex aspects of human linguistic and emotional communication. These individual functions will be carried out in real time,

Physical Optics Corporation
Products and Engineering Division 20600 Gramercy Place, Bldg. 100
Torrance, CA 90501
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(310) 320-3088
Kevin Degrood
DARPA 09-009      Awarded: 1/7/2010
Title:Acoustic Technology for Localization and Active Separation of Sources
Abstract:To address DARPA’s interest in sensors and controls that can separate and locate intermixed sounds in an auditory scene, Physical Optics Corporation (POC) proposes to develop a new Acoustic Technology for Localization and Active Separation of Sources (ATLASS). This proposed device is based on clustering of extracted feature vectors. The innovation in concatenating complementary signal processing algorithms will enable the device to separate and localize individual acoustic sources from a complex scene. As a result, this device offers highly selective signal extraction and location determination in real time, which directly address the DARPA requirements. In Phase I, POC will demonstrate the feasibility of ATLASS by building and testing a prototype that can discern separate voices among a mixture of sounds and deliver proposed system requirements and design documentation, along with the firmware source code. In Phase II, POC plans to develop an enhanced prototype that meets specific CONOPS requirements.

Aurora Flight Sciences Corporation
9950 Wakeman Drive
Manassas, VA 20110
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(703) 396-6352
Philip Johnson
DARPA 09-010      Awarded: 1/29/2010
Title:Integrated Photovoltaic Energy Scavenging and Storage System
Abstract:The majority of modern portable, wireless electrical devices are powered by batteries; when the batteries are depleted they must be replaced or recharged, which is a problem when the system operates in remote areas or an enemy's region. The capability to scavenge energy from the environment to recharge batteries and/or directly power electronics is essential to increase system lifetime and utility. Solar radiation is the most abundant and highest power source for scavenging, but is completely absent at night. Consequently, alternative power system designs are needed which supplement solar based scavengers with complementary techniques minimizing impact on system size and weight. Aurora proposes to develop an integrated energy scavenging and storage system which utilizes: 1) triple junction solar cells for highly efficient solar energy scavenging, 2) advanced infrared photovoltaics for night time thermal energy scavenging, and 3) thin film lithium cell technology to produce a power dense storage system. These component technologies will be stacked in a layered fashion and integrated with the system structure to provide additional weight savings and footprint reduction. The proposed system has the capability to produce as much as 30 mW/cm2 from incident solar radiation and convert thermal radiation at efficiencies as high as 3%.

Banpil Photonics, Inc.
2953 Bunker Hill Lane Suite 400
Santa Clara, CA 95054
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(408) 282-3628
Achyut Dutta
DARPA 09-010      Awarded: 2/8/2010
Title:Day Night Energy Harvesting Devices
Abstract:Intellectual Merits: This small Business Innovation Research Phase I project seeks to develop innovative energy harvesting device capable to scavenge energy from environment radiations (light), covering wavelengths from 0.3 to 14.0 micrometer for numerous military and commercial applications. The device has the harvesting efficiency of more than 30% for daylight and >25 % for the radiations covering from 3 to 14 micrometer. All day and night energy harvesting devices are required as an alternate power supplies for various remotely located sensing system, unmanned aircraft, distributed wireless network system, ground-based warning and monitoring system to power the systems directly and/or to recharge the batteries, when necessary. To date several techniques for energy harvesting are being used and they are mainly based on vibration, electromagnetic, electrostatic etc. However, these techniques are location dependencies and none of these techniques could provide enough energy to operate system mentioned. Today’s solar cell can be used as the energy harvester; however, they are only harvest when the daylight is present. In addition, today solar cell is not also high efficient, so that it requires more area to achieve make high power. A goal in Phase-I program is to carry on research and development of proposed energy harvesting device, capable to continuously scavenge energy from environment all day and night to power and/or recharge the battery. Banpil will demonstrate: by (a) identifying and carrying out the conceptual design, modeling and simulation of the proposed energy harvesting device, and also nano-structured harvesting device as the risk mitigate, (b) design and simulation of the process for fabricating harvesting device, and (c) design analyses of the harvesting device to achieve target performance at 300K in Phase-I. Recognizing the vast application potential of Banpil’s harvesting device, several DoD Agencies and industrial partners have expressed strong interest in using and commercializing this technology. In Phase II, Banpil will work DoD for specific aplication and also with several leading system companies who expressed strong interest on proposed energy harvestign device, as a part of commercialization of the harvesting device technology.

CoolCAD Electronics
7101 Poplar Avenue
Takoma Park, MD 20912
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(240) 432-6535
Michael Holloway
DARPA 09-010      Awarded: 2/19/2010
Title:Modeling, Design and Development of Micrometer Wave Energy Harvester Using Rectenna Arrays
Abstract:We propose to directly harvest energy from infrared (3-14microns) radiation sources using micro-antennas coupled to rectifying diodes and storage capacitors. The antenna receives infrared electromagnetic radiation and the rectifier converts it to direct current which is then stored. Large numbers of these rectennas connected in a conformal, light- weight array should be able to harvest energy sufficient to help power complete systems such as UAVs. In the Phase I effort, we will model, design and begin fabricating a single rectenna, as well as model an entire group of these rectennas integrated into an infrared focal plane array. Modeling will include solving Maxwell’s equations for micro-antenna design and simulating electron transport in tunneling diodes through numerical solution of the Schrodinger and Poisson equations. We will develop compact rectenna models for input into circuit simulators to analyze rectenna based sub-circuits and the entire energy harvester array. The developed design tools will be used to maximize energy absorption and facilitate impedance transformation to extract higher antenna voltages and thereby optimize rectification. We will also prototype scaled models of the rectenna array and fabricate experimental rectenna test structures. This will lead to more robust rectenna designs and fabrication techniques for implementation in Phase II.

Aneeve
22207 Linda Drive
Torrance, CA 90505
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(310) 874-3024
Chongwu Zhou
DARPA 09-011      Awarded: 1/5/2010
Title:Nanowire-based High Linearity RF Amplifiers
Abstract:adfaf

Nanohmics, Inc
6201 East Oltorf St. Suite 400
Austin, TX 78741
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(512) 389-9990
Andrew Milder
DARPA 09-011      Awarded: 12/30/2009
Title:Novel Highly-Linear Imprint Nanowire FET
Abstract:Nanohmics proposes to design a nanowire-based FET (NWFET) around an advanced nanolithographic imprint methodology which will lead to a scalable and economically competitive manufacturing process. The NWFET will consist of Si nanowires etched from an epitaxially deposited single crystal layer of Si, followed by silicon dioxide dielectric, then the gate, source, and drain structures. As opposed to other construction methodologies, this device will employ a very high density of current carrying nanowires for increased power density and reduced bias voltage requirements. Advanced modeling techniques will be used to optimize the linearity, power consumption, and bandwidth.

Omega Optics, Inc.
10435 Burnet Rd., Suite 108
Austin, TX 78758
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(512) 996-8833
Maggie Chen
DARPA 09-011      Awarded: 1/5/2010
Title:Ge Nanowire-based High Linearity RF Amplifiers
Abstract:In response to the DARPA SBIR solicitation, Omega Optics Inc. will collaborate with professors Emanuel Tutuc and Sanjay Banerjee at the University of Texas at Austin developing the Ge-SixGe1-x core-shell nanowire based high linearity FETs, which is important to emerging DoD-critical applications such as wide-dynamic-range phase array radar or remote sensor network. Compared with homogeneous Si or Ge nanowires, transparent (negative Schottky) contacts are formed to the conduction channel and the dopant scattering is eliminated. Furthermore, core-shell Ge–Si NWs provide a higher mobility one-dimensional hole gas compared to Si NWs. In addition, core/shell NWs offer an attractive platform for FET fabrication with high-k dielectrics, as the Si-containing shell serves as a passivation layer for the high-k dielectric deposition. It is well known that the RF performance (such as device current and ON/OFF ratio) of NW FETs with undoped S/D is significantly limited by the contact and series resistances. We propose Ge-SixGe1- x core-shell NWFET with highly doped S/D with improved RF performance, Our preliminary results show two orders of magnitude higher current compared to NW FETs with nominally undoped S/D, as well as an improved ON/OFF current ratio and noise figure (NF).

Cyan Systems
3718 Barcelona Drive
Santa Barbara, CA 93105
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(805) 453-0582
John Caulfield
DARPA 09-012      Awarded: 2/1/2010
Title:Multispectral Super-Resolution Sensor Technology
Abstract:The Multispectral Super-Resolution Sensor Technology (MSST) FPA is the centerpiece for a potentially revolutionary technical break-through required in the successful development of simultaneous sensing in 3-5 bands with improved FPA formats goals of achieving resolutions of greater than 10,000 x 10,000 pixels. The MSST’s innovative technology will attempt breakthroughs to a high sensitivity super-resolved detectors with multispectral resolution in SWIR- MWIR- LWIR band detectors. Using a biologically inspired architecture for MSST, we plan to demonstrate enhanced NEP, improved resolution, on FPA target extraction, and agile spectral processing.

Nova Research, Inc. DBA Nova Sensors
320 Alisal Road, Suite 104
Solvang, CA 93463
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(805) 693-9600
Mark Massie
DARPA 09-012      Awarded: 1/26/2010
Title:Super Resolution Focal Plane Array
Abstract:Nova Sensors developed the world’s first foveating focal plane array (FPA) in 2002 under sponsorship from the Air Force Research Laboratory. At least ten SBIR contracts have contributed to the development of a variety of these devices which are now being implemented in demonstration camera systems. The first device was a 32 x 32 pixel visible test imager; today Nova has demonstrated a fully-functioning camera system utilizing a 1024 x 1024 pixel midwave infrared (MWIR) cryogenically cooled “Variable Acuity Superpixel Imaging” (VASI™) FPA. We are currently developing a 2K x 2K dual band version. We believe Nova’s patent (US patent #7408572) covers the first, genuine conception and implementation of a multi-foveating image sensor that performs real-time bandwidth reduction of image data. This SBIR effort is in the true spirit of continuing to extend the range of applications of foveating image sensor technology. Multispectral capabilities combined with super resolution features inspired from biological sensor counterparts form the basis for the operation of the proposed sensor. Nova’s close association with industry partners gives our team significant capability and operational flexibility.

Solid State Scientific Corporation
27-2 Wright Road
Hollis, NH 03049
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(603) 598-1194
James Murguia
DARPA 09-012      Awarded: 1/11/2010
Title:Super Resolution Focal Plane Array
Abstract:Solid State Scientific Corporation (SSSC) is pleased to propose a Phase I SBIR program to develop a unique high resolution imaging sensor prototype that leverages super-resolution processing. The proposed sensor will be lightweight, portable, and low-power with high pixel resolution. The unique optical system, which is approximately 2 cubic centimeters in volume, will support real time frame rates as high as 24-30 Hz. with no moving parts. The sensor system will weigh approximately 0.5 Kg and dissipate approximately 20 watts.

Physical Optics Corporation
Applied Technologies Division 20600 Gramercy Place Bldg. 100
Torrance, CA 90501
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(310) 320-3088
John Matthews
DARPA 09-013      Awarded: 2/9/2010
Title:Transmit-Receive Extremely Low Frequency to Very Low Frequency Directional Antenna System
Abstract:To address the DARPA need for a small low electromagnetic frequency directional antenna, Physical Optics Corporation (POC) proposes to develop a new Transmit-Receive extremely low frequency– very low frequency (ELF-VLF) Directional Antenna (TREDA). This proposed device is based on a compact resonant two-way antenna and an atmospheric plasma waveguide. The use of a highly directional waveguide will enable the TREDA system to provide directionality of over 50 dBi with single-frequency operation at frequencies from 1 Hz - 100 kHz resulting in a narrow beamwidth of 0.1 m on the ground at 100 m standoff. The system’s resonant antenna provide transmit and receive capability in the ELF-VLF bands in a compact (~0.5 m in any direction) device. As a result, the TREDA system directly meets DARPA needs for a low-frequency antenna system for detection (and also generation) of telluric currents to detect potential threats concealed in underground tunnels and facilities from airborne platforms. In Phase I, POC will demonstrate the feasibility of TREDA by assembling and testing a proof-of-concept prototype of the TREDA system. In Phase II, POC plans to develop a fully functional prototype and test plan, and will demonstrate functionality of the TREDA system to DARPA personnel.

Q-Track Corporation
3414 Governors Drive, Suite Q
Huntsville, AL 35805
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(256) 489-0075
Hans Schantz
DARPA 09-013      Awarded: 12/22/2009
Title:Multipole Synthesis of Directive, Electrically Small Antennas
Abstract:Q-Track Corporation will develop a multipole synthesis procedure for designing directive, electrically small antennas (ESAs). Starting from a desired pattern function, this procedure will enable Q-Track to derive an appropriate configuration of dipole, quadrupole, octopole, and higher order antenna moments to approximate the desired ESA pattern function. Q-Track will explore the design space to evaluate the tradeoff between increased directivity and decreased efficiency, taking into account the practicality of realizing particular mutlipole configurations and the expected losses in real-world configurations. Q-Track will combine analytical analysis of multipole field superposition, numerical modeling of candidate designs, prototyping of promising candidates, and characterization of gain and matching. This will allow us to validate our multipole synthesis procedure, reducing technical risk and increasing the likelihood of a successful outcome. Q-Track anticipates being able to deliver a working prototype from our multipole synthesis technique by the end of Phase I.

Boulder Nonlinear Systems, Inc.
450 Courtney Way, Unit 107
Lafayette, CO 80026
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(303) 604-0077
JAY STOCKLEY
DARPA 09-014      Awarded: 2/2/2010
Title:Development of New Adaptive Polymer Lenses
Abstract:Boulder Nonlinear Systems proposes to develop significantly improved adaptive polymer lenses (APLs) for use in a variety of imaging systems. APLs will be fabricated and characterized for focal length and optical properties. Electro-mechanical actuators will be investigated. An optical zoom system using the APLs developed on this contract will also be designed and included as part of the final report.

Intelligent Optical Systems, Inc.
2520 W. 237th Street
Torrance, CA 90505
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(424) 263-6359
Homayoon Ansari
DARPA 09-014      Awarded: 1/26/2010
Title:Pressure-Actuated Elastomer Lens with Highly Tunable Focal Length
Abstract:This research will advance the state-of-the art technology in tunable-focal-length lenses for the visible spectrum and the mid IR wavelengths, by utilizing the unique optical and mechanical properties of polymers, which otherwise are not exploitable by alternative approaches such as electrowetting. We will combine our extensive polymer and optics expertise to identify candidate elastomers, analyze the structural, geometric-optical, and chromatic dispersive characteristics of continuously tunable lenses based on shape change of elastomers under applied pressure, and provide candidate designs of imaging systems with rapid auto-focus and high zoom ratio based on adaptive polymer lenses.

KBN Optics
15 Wind Tree Circle
Pittsford, NY 14534
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(585) 748-0959
Jerry Kuper
DARPA 09-014      Awarded: 2/8/2010
Title:Nonlinear Properties of Adaptive Polymer Lens Materials
Abstract:KBN Optics will investigate the nonlinear and chromatic properties of adaptive polymer lens materials. These studies will be directed toward identifying materials that can be incorporated in the next generation riflescope design, which can provide automated focusing and optical limiting capability.

Galt LLC
6075 Jackson Road
Ann Arbor, MI 48103
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(734) 929-3214
Subhashree Ramadoss
DARPA 09-015      Awarded: 2/11/2010
Title:Special Nuclear Material (SNM) Detection
Abstract:The challenge of highly specific long-range detection of special nuclear materials (SNM) requires the development of alternative technologies to those typically deployed in the nuclear radiation detection field. We propose to quantify the feasibility of one such alternative during the Phase I research. Specifically, in order to detect SNM with greater than 95 % probability and to control the false positive rate (Pf < 0.01 %), we will design a radar system based on the cm-wave electromagnetic radiation. We will concentrate our efforts on an indirect measure of the presence of the radioactive materials; namely, on the secondary ionization that surrounds the package, most notably in the air. In order to minimize the power requirements of the system, our calculations indicate that one should employ a synchronous microwave pulse (among other potential solutions) to stimulate the electron concentration in ionization region surrounding the SNM. Since the method is relatively untested for the particular ionizing radiation source targeted, the work will focus on accurately simulating: (a) the impact of SNM on its surrounding environment, focusing on the induced ionization due to neutron and gamma-ray interactions in the surrounding air, (b) the impact that the resulting ionization has on propagating electromagnetic waves, and (c) the optimal means to identify the particular isotopic composition of the package from the back-scattered radar pulse. These simulated results will then be used to assess the performance of the system in terms of the detection power and specificity of the system response.

LightLIne Technologies, Inc.
254 Marked Tree Rd.
Needham, MA 02492
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(781) 400-1479
Steven Lis
DARPA 09-015      Awarded: 2/3/2010
Title:Special Nuclear Material (SNM) Detection
Abstract:Nuclear Weapons, or Special Nuclear Materials (SNM) which can be used in fabricating nuclear weapons, are difficult to detect, can be transported in conventional shipping containers, and represent a serious security threat in the hands of terrorists. The detection of SNM is currently accomplished, some say inadequately, by expensive nuclear radiation particle counters that must operate in close proximity and slow down commercial traffic. A long range (>5 km) detection system is proposed that operates on new principles. Based on the effects that nuclear radiation has on the surrounding air, a layered combination of passive and active sensing means can observe signature trace components that can be used to locate hidden SNM and weapons. By remotely observing specific atmospheric components having limited lifetimes, the effect of radiation is naturally integrated in the surrounding air, making detection possible using methods adapted from current atmospheric research efforts. The Phase I program will quantitatively examine the potential for successful detection with a low false alarm rate in a layered detection system architecture that incorporates multiple diverse technical solutions. The Phase II effort will subject a breadboard system to experimental tests that validate the potential of the proposed approach for realistic detection scenarios.

Physical Optics Corporation
Applied Technologies Division 20600 Gramercy Place Bldg. 100
Torrance, CA 90501
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(310) 320-3088
Wondwosen Mengesha
DARPA 09-015      Awarded: 2/3/2010
Title:Sensor for Identification of Distant Nuclear Materials
Abstract:To address the DARPA’s need for Special Nuclear Material (SNM) detection, Physical Optics Corporation (POC) proposes to develop a new Sensor for Identification of Distant Nuclear Materials (SID-NUM). This proposed system is based on a multilayer approach using radio wave signal reflection from low-density plasma created through ionization of air by gamma rays from SNM. The innovation in the use of pulsed broadband radio waves that reflect from low-density plasma mass will enable the SID-NUM to accurately and effectively detect SNMs at distance greater than 5 km (never before achieved) and with high degree of accuracy. As a result, this SID-NUM system offers detection of SNM with a high degree of confidence (greater than 95%) and low false alarm rate (less than 0.01%), which directly addresses the DARPA requirements. In Phase I POC will develop and investigate the specific approach, and assemble a TRL 2-3 prototype to demonstrate its technical feasibility. In Phase II, POC will continue design improvement, experimentation, and test analyses on all the relevant and untested phenomenology, and assemble and demonstrate a TRL 4-5 prototype for 5 km detection range capability.

Aurora Flight Sciences Corporation
9950 Wakeman Drive
Manassas, VA 20110
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(617) 500-0249
Javier Luis
DARPA 09-016      Awarded: 2/11/2010
Title:Micro-sized Microwave Atmospheric Satellite Cluster (MicroMAS)
Abstract:CubeSats have emerged as a de-facto platform for small, low cost satellites. There is an ever growing list of COTS suppliers for CubeSat compatible systems, and numerous launch opportunities due to the development of the PPOD launcher which now flies as part of many expendable launch vehicles and even the Space Shuttle. In spite of this, CubeSats applications are limited by the small size, volume, and power available on any single satellite. We propose to overcome these limitations by developing a networked, fractionated CubeSat architecture where the resources of multiple CubeSats are combined to accomplish a scientific objective. Further, we propose to demonstrate this architecture through the design, development, fabrication, and flight of a Micro-sized Microwave Atmospheric Satellite Cluster (MicroMAS) to provide unique observations of hurricane dynamics while also demonstrating a transformative satellite architecture supporting a wide range of missions, including weather prediction, communication, and astronomy. This cluster consists of two elements: The first element, a 3U CubeSat spacecraft, will spin an 8-channel 118-GHz passive microwave spectrometer at 1 Hz so that it cross-track scans through nadir to produce ~10-km resolution spectral images at nadir. The second element, another CubeSat, provides data processing and communication to ground stations.

ESPACE INC
30 Lynn Avenue
Hull, MA 02045
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(781) 925-3893
François Martel
DARPA 09-016      Awarded: 12/28/2009
Title:Networked Cubesat RF Sparse Array System
Abstract:We propose to design, develop, build and fly the elements of an orbiting large-baseline sparse array antenna system (RFSAS) using a cluster of cubesats. RFSAS will function effectively as an antenna with aperture adjustable from several meters to tens of kilometers, providing a range of sensing performances that cannot be achieved on a single spacecraft, and is very costly to deploy with traditional spacecraft technologies. RFSAS will open new capabilities for earth monitoring and space observations, with applications in: solar physics and geophysics; imaging of solar activity and coronal mass ejections in the low frequency range below the atmospheric cut-off; space weather monitoring and warning; and precise localization of RF sources and bursts on earth and in space. RFSAS antenna elements and array processing capabilities are distributed between cubesats. A prototype set of cubesats designed for a specific RFSAS application and their ground system will be prepared for launch and operations, to test and demonstrate the RFSAS system capabilities. High performance space-based sparse array antennas can then be assembled by multiplying low-cost copies of the prototype cubesat elements.

Pumpkin, Inc.
750 Naples Street
San Francisco, CA 94112
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(415) 584-6360
Andrew Kalman
DARPA 09-016      Awarded: 3/15/2010
Title:Agile, Adaptive, and Ad Hoc (AAA) Emergency 911 (E911) Communications, Space Situational Awareness (SSA), Missile Warning, and Weapon Targeting Networ
Abstract:Many of the 10,000 Hezbollah missiles fired at Israel in 2006 are the Fadj-3 rockets fired at Americans in Iraq. The Iron Dome, EAPS-ID, and Stunner anti-missile batteries can shoot- down millions of these shorter-range (under 70-250 km) missiles starting in 2010, but their cueing radars detect a limited portion of their trajectories which reduces their desirable 30-second intercept windows. Since 2007, China shot-down a satellite, a commercial Iridium satellite was destroyed by an undetected Russian satellite, and North Korea and Iran tested maneuvering warheads in space. The recently launched TacSat-3 and NFIRE satellites have 50-cm or larger aperture cameras that can detect these shorter-range rockets and ASAT collision hazards from orbit, but this is not their primary mission. An ad- hoc network of CubeSat satellites with agilely developed 7.5-cm cameras can communicate with each other and TacSat-3 using patented PeerSat Inter-Satellite Links to adapt tasking between cheap 7.5-cm and expensive 50-cm cameras to coordinate dramatically faster cueing for short-range missile defense, space situational awareness (SSA), and ASAT collision defense. PeerSat Links also provide Emergency 911 (E911) communications and immediate warnings to other orbiting spacecraft, and in-flight re- targeting to DARPA NetFires missiles or Stunner interceptors using weapon data links to counter-strike.

Freedom Photonics LLC
615 A State Street
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(805) 277-3031
Jonathon Barton
DARPA 09-017      Awarded: 2/12/2010
Title:Advanced Rad-Hard Solar Energy Collection Cells
Abstract:This Small Business Innovation Research Phase I project will focus on the development of rad-hard, low cost high efficiency solar cell technology. The objective is to demonstrate the feasibility of manufacturing of novel hybrid nanostructure based photovoltaics, which will utilize innovative concentrator and light conversion technology to produce rad-hard, low cost, high efficiency solar cells. There is a great need for highly efficient, rugged, ultra-lightweight, small volume, and low-cost solar cells. We propose to take advantage of our expertise in III-V semiconductor device fabrication, and employ novel design and fabrication process to realize state-of-the-art nano photovoltaic structures.

Gloyer-Taylor Laboratories LLC
2212 Harton Blvd
Tullahoma, TN 37388
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(951) 304-4086
Zachary Taylor
DARPA 09-017      Awarded: 1/14/2010
Title:Advanced Flywheel Energy Storage
Abstract:Applying multivariable optimization in conjunction with modern materials technology has revealed an opportunity to dramatically improve flywheel energy storage technology. Using this innovative approach, GTL’s Advanced Flywheel™ could deliver 500 W-hr/kg with the potential to achieve in excess of 1000 W-hr/kg. This represents a substantial increase in performance over conventional high-performance energy storage technologies that deliver 100-300 W-hr/kg. While it has long been believed that the maximum energy density of a flywheel is achieved with the classic heavy-rim flywheel design. By controlling the location, orientation and curvature of each fiber, the Advanced Flywheel design ensures that the strength and inertia of every fiber is fully utilized while also minimizing or eliminating any under performing material. This allows the opportunity to exceed the classic flywheel performance limit. In the proposed effort, after developing the preliminary design of the overall Advanced Flywheel Energy Storage system, a detailed design of the Advanced Flywheel rotor will be created. A proof-of-concept unit will then be fabricated and tested to verify the performance potential of the design. The results of this effort will be used to determine the maximum performance that can be achieved with this transformational technology.

RoseStreet Laboratories
3701 E. University Drive
Phoenix, AZ 85213
Phone:
PI:
Topic#:
(602) 431-4782
Iulian Gherasoiu
DARPA 09-017      Awarded: 2/23/2010
Title:Enhanced Light Absorption in thin InGaN Layers for Radiation Hard Solar Cells Using Nano-Patterned Metallic Films
Abstract:We propose to develop and deliver a nano-patterned metallic light trap platform that will allow ultra-thin InGaN photovoltaics to exhibit extended lifetime by a factor of four when used in low orbit satellite operations. We will test the enhancement of light absorption in InGaN layers with In fraction of 25% for use as an effective method of realizing radiation ultra-hard solar cells for space-based applications. Towards this goal we will deposit metallic films with a thickness bellow 100nm, and optimize the groove / grid pattern design to ensure the coupling to above bandgap light with a wavelength in the range from of 505nm to 520nm.