Air force 16. 1 Small Business Innovation Research (sbir) Proposal Submission Instructions



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KEYWORDS: space catalog, space situational awareness, SPADOC





AF161-086

TITLE: Solid-State Power Amplifier Thermal Management

TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Space Platforms

The technology within this topic is restricted under the International Traffic in Arms Regulation (ITAR), 22 CFR Parts 120-130, which controls the export and import of defense-related material and services, including export of sensitive technical data, or the Export Administration Regulation (EAR), 15 CFR Parts 730-774, which controls dual use items. Offerors must disclose any proposed use of foreign nationals (FNs), their country(ies) of origin, the type of visa or work permit possessed, and the statement of work (SOW) tasks intended for accomplishment by the FN(s) in accordance with section 5.4.c.(8) of the solicitation and within the AF Component-specific instructions. Offerors are advised foreign nationals proposed to perform on this topic may be restricted due to the technical data under US Export Control Laws. Please direct questions to the AF SBIR/STTR Contracting Officer, Ms. Gail Nyikon, gail.nyikon@us.af.mil.

OBJECTIVE: Develop low-cost, low-mass thermal management solutions to address the high heat flux and temperature of next generation GaN power amplifiers or phased arrays.

DESCRIPTION: Current thermal management of solid-state power amplifiers (SSPAs) in space is limited in its ability to spread power densities from the channels of active power amplifier devices to the large area thermal radiators required for ultimate rejection of heat to space. Current power densities at the bottom of the power amplifier device can exceed 62 W/cm2 and are expected to climb to values greater than 1400 W/cm2 in the next five to six years. At these extreme heat fluxes and temperatures, it is apparent that a new generation of thermal management is required to bridge the gap between future requirements and the capabilities of our current systems.

The introduction of GaN power amplifiers affects the thermal control system from source-to-sink, and innovative tech solutions at any point in the thermal control system will be considered. GaN technology provides a number of system level benefits (e.g., reduced volume/mass) if the thermal subsystem design can take advantage of the increased operating powers and temperatures.

Future GaN power amplifier devices will operate at temperatures in excess of 150 degrees C and will exceed power densities of 1400 W/cm2 (600W over 0.635 cm x 0.635 cm). Current spacecraft thermal management systems are not currently able to handle these extreme temperatures and power densities. Traditional heat transport devices are limited to approx. 6W/cm2 and temperatures below 80 degrees C. Proposed technology solutions should seek to minimize the resultant temperature drop such that the radiator operates at peak efficiency. Due to the biquadratic nature of radiation heat transfer an increase in radiator temperature directly equates to reduced radiator volume and mass.

Proposed tech solutions shall operate in a space environment (vacuum and no gravity), as well as on Earth in any orientation with respect to gravity for ground testability. The solution must operate over the temperature range of -20 to150 degrees C and must survive a temperature range of -60 to 150 degrees C. In addition, please be sure to address the thermal induced stress on the tech solution after thermal cycles in a specific application as this will vary depending on the mission. The solution shall be a passive design, no power required to meet performance requirements.

PHASE I: Develop conceptual designs of the hardware based on preliminary analysis. Demonstrate by analysis and/or test the feasibility of such concepts and that the approach can meet all of the performance requirements stated above in the Phase II development effort.

PHASE II: Demonstrate the technology developed in Phase I. Tasks shall include, but are not limited to, a demonstration of key technical parameters that can be accomplished and a detailed performance analysis of the technology. The culmination of the Phase II effort shall be at least one prototype delivery for validation testing. Teaming with a prime contractor is highly recommended, as it speeds tech transition.

PHASE III DUAL USE APPLICATIONS: Thermal control technologies developed for use aboard DoD satellites are equally applicable for use on commercial satellites, as well as any number of terrestrial electronics.

REFERENCES:

1. Gilmore, D. G., “Spacecraft Thermal Control Handbook Volume I: Fundamental Technologies,” 2nd Ed, The Aerospace Press, El Segundo, CA, 2002.

2. Wertz, J. R., and Larson, W. J. (eds.), “Space Mission Analysis and Design,” 3rd Ed, Microcosm, 1999.

3. Intersociety Conference on Thermal and Thermomechanical Phenomena in Electronic Systems (ITHERM) Proceedings, http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/servlet/opac?punumber=1000760.

KEYWORDS: thermal management, thermal control, GaN power amplifiers, heat spreader, high power, space platform





AF161-087

TITLE: Algorithm Development for WFOV Mission Data Processing

TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Sensors

The technology within this topic is restricted under the International Traffic in Arms Regulation (ITAR), 22 CFR Parts 120-130, which controls the export and import of defense-related material and services, including export of sensitive technical data, or the Export Administration Regulation (EAR), 15 CFR Parts 730-774, which controls dual use items. Offerors must disclose any proposed use of foreign nationals (FNs), their country(ies) of origin, the type of visa or work permit possessed, and the statement of work (SOW) tasks intended for accomplishment by the FN(s) in accordance with section 5.4.c.(8) of the solicitation and within the AF Component-specific instructions. Offerors are advised foreign nationals proposed to perform on this topic may be restricted due to the technical data under US Export Control Laws. Please direct questions to the AF SBIR/STTR Contracting Officer, Ms. Gail Nyikon, gail.nyikon@us.af.mil.

OBJECTIVE: Develop and test candidate front-end exceedance generation processing algorithms which may be employed in the mission data processing of wide field-of-view (WFOV) Overhead Persistent Infrared (OPIR) data.

DESCRIPTION: The Air Force has a WFOV program with a goal of proving out an effective ground mission data processing capability for large format sensor data. Of most importance here is real-time processing of large format image data. Relevant sensor data includes starer data in the SWIR, MWIR, SWIR-STG (see-to-ground), and MWIR-STG bands, as observed from geosynchronous orbit on a 4k x 4k focal plane recorded at less than 10 Hz frame rate. It's anticipated that mission data will be downlinked and routed to Space and Missile Systems Center's Falcon Shield algorithm research facility for processing on workstation class computing resources with available GPU acceleration. The proposer may offer to build algorithms in one or more areas of the front-end exceedance generation processing: 1) tiling and windowing, 2) noise suppression, 3) jitter suppression, 4) clutter suppression, 5) thresholding and buffering, and/or 6) exceedance formatting. Developed algorithms shall pursue real-time operation on supplied datasets. It's likely that the most successful approaches will demonstrate by direct comparison how to extend/reformulate current state-of-the-art algorithms toward more efficient computational performance when operating on large format datasets.

PHASE I: In this phase, the proposer is asked to prototype algorithms in one or more of the following areas of the front-end exceedance generation processing: 1) tiling and windowing, 2) noise suppression, 3) jitter suppression, 4) clutter suppression, 5) thresholding and buffering, and/or 6) exceedance formatting. Prototypes may be in MATLAB or any other form that can demonstrate processing potential.

PHASE II: In this phase, the algorithm(s) will be inserted into an overall architecture and tested using real-time WFOV data from the space vehicle. The contractor will program the candidate algorithm(s) in C++ to meet a government furnished API and will participate with a government team in evaluating effectiveness. Based on results, the team may choose to alter/tune the algorithm(s).

PHASE III DUAL USE APPLICATIONS: Certify and transition algorithms relevant to the operational system into the WFOV Mission Control System (MCS) to be completed in the 2021 timeframe. Adapt algorithms and market as appropriate to commercial ISR satellite operators.

REFERENCES:

1. NGA STANDARDIZATION DOCUMENT, OPIR Level 3 Standard, Representative Return Data Model, 2011-05-03, Version 1.0. Online at http://www.gwg.nga.mil/documents/ofg/OPIR_Level_3_Rep-return_Data_Model.doc.

2. Commander’s Handbook for Persistent Surveillance, Version 1.0. Available online at http://www.dtic.mil/doctrine/doctrine/jwfc/surveillance_hbk.pdf.

3. DSP fact sheet. Online at http://www.losangeles.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=5323.

4. SBIR fact sheet. Online at http://www.losangeles.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=22323
KEYWORDS: noise, jitter, clutter, starer, OPIR



AF161-088

TITLE: Integrated Code Base and High Performance Embedded Computing Tool

TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Electronics

The technology within this topic is restricted under the International Traffic in Arms Regulation (ITAR), 22 CFR Parts 120-130, which controls the export and import of defense-related material and services, including export of sensitive technical data, or the Export Administration Regulation (EAR), 15 CFR Parts 730-774, which controls dual use items. Offerors must disclose any proposed use of foreign nationals (FNs), their country(ies) of origin, the type of visa or work permit possessed, and the statement of work (SOW) tasks intended for accomplishment by the FN(s) in accordance with section 5.4.c.(8) of the solicitation and within the AF Component-specific instructions. Offerors are advised foreign nationals proposed to perform on this topic may be restricted due to the technical data under US Export Control Laws. Please direct questions to the AF SBIR/STTR Contracting Officer, Ms. Gail Nyikon, gail.nyikon@us.af.mil.

OBJECTIVE: Develop an integrated code base suite and a tool set that can generate high-performance, hardware platform-specific code.

DESCRIPTION: The Air Force and the space community need a modern space processor for missions in 2020-2030 that processes large volumes of data with sophisticated algorithms. Overhead Persistent Infrared (OPIR), radar, hyperspectral, and hyper-temporal concepts being studied today envision real-time computer systems for signal and image processing applications. They typically require low latency and high throughput of application processing, efficient utilization of system resources (compute, memory, bandwidth), low form factors (size, weight, and power demands), affordable software costs (code size, re-use, portability) and high autonomy. The Next-Generation Space Processor study funded by the Air Force Research Laboratory and NASA has evaluated architecture trades and the Space and Missile Systems Center is currently assessing a processor developed for the National Reconnaissance Office. Translating high level algorithm descriptions written in MATLAB to high performance and hardware efficient implementation remains challenging. High Performance Embedded Computing (HPEC) application processing almost always requires iterative rounds of software performance optimization to attain required application latency and throughput performance. Consequently, progress has been slow and comparison between architectures has been ambiguous, and this has precluded an informed decision to commit the considerable resources needed for design, qualification, and implementation of a particular architecture. This topic requests the development of a tool that accepts C-language code for a suite of algorithms and outputs optimized code that can be compiled for a selected device. In addition to making it easy and quick to port algorithms across different platforms for comparing the performance of different architectures, the tool should also allow software developers to concentrate on algorithmic advances rather than processor architecture peculiarities. Goals of 10X productivity improvement (e.g., through high-level abstraction). Performance speed-up based on platform tuning (e.g., cache re-sizing, core availability, internal bus performance, etc.) are also desired.

PHASE I: Identify/define hardware-aware optimization capes for likely future compute architectures (e.g., RADSPEED, MAESTRO [Tilera], ARM, GPU, FPGA and X86 64). Define exemplar data sets used to V&V implementation. Establish methodologies that support rapid platform-agnostic code generation capable of efficiently mapping algorithms to platform-specific features and exploiting available optimizations.

PHASE II: Create consolidated and integrated OPIR algorithm test suite from existing constituent algorithms; map high-level MATLAB algorithm specifications to related kernel and processing functional block implementations. Demonstrate ability to generate hardware platform-aware code using the consolidated and integrated OPIR algorithm test suite, execute the generated code on one or more of the likely future computer processor hardware platforms using the representative data sets.

PHASE III DUAL USE APPLICATIONS: Space qualify selected processor in 2020 timeframe.

REFERENCES:

1. John Keller, The future of high-performance embedded computing, August 11, 2014. Available online at http://www.militaryaerospace.com/articles/print/volume-25/issue-8/technology-focus/the-future-of-high-performance-embedded-computing.html.

2. Commander’s Handbook for Persistent Surveillance, Version 1.0. Available online at http://www.dtic.mil/doctrine/doctrine/jwfc/surveillance_hbk.pdf.

3. DSP fact sheet. Online at http://www.losangeles.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=532.

4. SBIRS fact sheet. Online at http://www.losangeles.af.mil/library/factsheets/factsheet.asp?id=22323

KEYWORDS: processor, efficient, processing, design, tool, HPEC, OPIR





AF161-089

TITLE: Development of Flat Lens Technology

TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Materials/Processes

The technology within this topic is restricted under the International Traffic in Arms Regulation (ITAR), 22 CFR Parts 120-130, which controls the export and import of defense-related material and services, including export of sensitive technical data, or the Export Administration Regulation (EAR), 15 CFR Parts 730-774, which controls dual use items. Offerors must disclose any proposed use of foreign nationals (FNs), their country(ies) of origin, the type of visa or work permit possessed, and the statement of work (SOW) tasks intended for accomplishment by the FN(s) in accordance with section 5.4.c.(8) of the solicitation and within the AF Component-specific instructions. Offerors are advised foreign nationals proposed to perform on this topic may be restricted due to the technical data under US Export Control Laws. Please direct questions to the AF SBIR/STTR Contracting Officer, Ms. Gail Nyikon, gail.nyikon@us.af.mil.

OBJECTIVE: Develop an ultra thin, flat lens that will focus light in the visible region, without the discontinuities imparted by a Fresnel lens.

DESCRIPTION: A flat lens focuses light by imparting an instantaneous phase shift to the light instead of working like a conventional lens by changing the distance traveled through a higher index of refraction material. Such a lens offers numerous advantages over conventional lens. It does not impart aberrations upon the light including spherical aberration, astigmatism, and coma. Additionally, wide-angle lens will not exhibit the fish-eye effect that occurs with conventional wide-angle lens. The resulting image or signal will not require complex corrective techniques. Such a lens will exhibit a large reduction in weight, greater than 90 percent depending upon the diameter and focal length. Additionally, this lighter weight lens would only need lighter weight holders, and weight savings for the holder is estimated to be greater than 50 percent. This would have a large reduction in the weight of optical and infrared sensors and would require less delta v for satellites utilizing such sensors. Fresnel Lens are a type of flat lens, but suffer from serious deficiencies in the image quality due to varying width of the rings that make up the lens. A flat lens would not experience such deficiencies as the phase shift is instantaneous. Recently it was reported by Aieta et al. (2015) that a multi-color flat lens was demonstrated in the laboratory.

PHASE I: Assess the feasibility of developing a flat lens that works across a broader region of the spectrum than around a particular laser wavelength. Investigate methods of color correction for such flat lenses.

PHASE II: Build and test that a flat lens that will focus light and has reduced aberrations compared to conventional lenses.

PHASE III DUAL USE APPLICATIONS: Numerous potential applications exist. Any optical device could be made much lighter. Military devices include ultra light optics for: cameras (satellites, drones), binoculars, and lasers. Commercial applications include telecom, camera lenses, prescription glasses, or optical implants.

REFERENCES:

1. Aieta, F., et. al. "Aberration-Free Ultra thin Flat Lenses and Axicons at Telecom Wavelengths Based on Plasmonic Metasurfaces," dx.doi.org/10.1021/nl302516v, Nano Letters, 2012, 12, 4932-4936.

2. Aieta, F., A. Kats, M. A., Genevet, P., and Capasso, F. Multiwavelength achromatic metasurfaces by dispersive phase compensation. Science 20 March 2015: 347 (6228), 1342-1345.Published online 19 February 2015 [DOI:10.1126/science.aaa2494].

KEYWORDS: flat lens, axicons, metasurfaces, phase-discontinuities, lens, plasmonics, aberration-free





AF161-090

TITLE: High Data Rate/Low SWaP-C GPS Crosslinks

TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Space Platforms

The technology within this topic is restricted under the International Traffic in Arms Regulation (ITAR), 22 CFR Parts 120-130, which controls the export and import of defense-related material and services, including export of sensitive technical data, or the Export Administration Regulation (EAR), 15 CFR Parts 730-774, which controls dual use items. Offerors must disclose any proposed use of foreign nationals (FNs), their country(ies) of origin, the type of visa or work permit possessed, and the statement of work (SOW) tasks intended for accomplishment by the FN(s) in accordance with section 5.4.c.(8) of the solicitation and within the AF Component-specific instructions. Offerors are advised foreign nationals proposed to perform on this topic may be restricted due to the technical data under US Export Control Laws. Please direct questions to the AF SBIR/STTR Contracting Officer, Ms. Gail Nyikon, gail.nyikon@us.af.mil.

OBJECTIVE: Develop scalable, flexible lower SWaP-C GPS crosslink capability that allows future operational systems to forego significant dependence upon ground clock and ephemeris refresh with concurrent support of real-time command and control and age of data.

DESCRIPTION: Global Positioning System (GPS) space segment is currently comprised of 31 satellites in MEO at an approximate altitude of 20,200km (radius approx. 27,600km). The nominal space segment for GPS space consists of 24 space vehicles (SVs) in six orbital planes. Each GPS orbital plane nominally contains four satellites at a 55-degree inclination each (tilt relative to the equator).

GPS satellites receive updates from dedicated ground antennas located at Cape Canaveral, Ascension Island, Diego Garcia, and Kwajalein, as well as the Air Force Space Control Network (AFSCN). The purpose of these updates is to synchronize the atomic clocks on board the satellites, update ephemeris data onboard the satellite, and provide command and control of satellite functions, to include critical data and capabilities needed by U.S. and allied forces in theaters of operation. Each satellite is normally updated once per day, resulting in an average age of data of 11 hours and 58 minutes. Between these updates, as the age of the ephemeris and clock data increases, positioning and timing errors experienced also increase.

GPS Blocks IIR and IIF utilize UHF crosslinks (260 MHz to 290 MHz). This band is allocated on a primary basis to the mobile and fixed services. The Navy UHF Follow-On program has priority for the use of this band, and several other primary users such as paging services limit the utility of this band. Furthermore, the current UHF antenna is omnidirectional, which increases the interference potential. The GPS Directorate has considered other bands such as Ka Band (22.55-23.55 GHz) and V-Band (59.3-64.0 GHz) with directional antennas, but the large size, weight, and cost of this system hindered further development.

To minimize reliance on ground uploads to individual satellites; it is desirable to have GPS satellites communicate via reliable crosslinks at high rates to all assets that minimizes the age of clock and ephemeris. The implementation of this high data rate crosslink provides ephemeris and clock updates across the constellation from a single ground to SV upload with the remaining SVs obtaining updates via the crosslinks. (Updated data transmitted are currently relayed via the crosslinks.) A realistic approach to understanding the viability of these high rate crosslinks is to design and develop capabilities to synchronize clocks and to generate onboard ephemeris via inter-satellite range determination on the crosslinks and geo-location from a crosslink ring with a specific focus on reduced SWaP-C.

Peak data rates per crosslink initially are expected to be approximately 1.5 - 3 Mbps and average data rates will be approximately 200-700 kbps.

Any relevant proposal should clearly indicate how the intended effort conclusion result will improve the GPS system's capabilities via a validation and verification plan.

Proposers are highly encouraged to work with relevant PNT system prime contractors to help ensure applicability of their efforts and the initiation of technology transition design and development.

Proposers should clearly indicate in their proposals what government furnished property or information are required for the success of the effort. Requests for other-DoD contractor intellectual property will be rejected.

PHASE I: Design and develop an innovative concept, which includes a preliminary design for a low SWaP-C space based crosslink system for GPS that meets or exceeds government-specified application requirements.

PHASE II: The selected proposer will design and build an EDU for the GPS crosslink system ground test and evaluation. Phase II efforts should ensure compatibility with component interface descriptions which support overall payload and space vehicle reference designs as part of their commercialization effort. Interface descriptions will be supplied to Phase I awardees invited to propose for Phase II.

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