Environmentally Hardened Laser-based micro combat ID
Agency / Branch:
DOD / SOCOM
Aerius Photonics will address the need for a small, ruggedized, long-range wearable micro combat identification device by developing a compact, portable, battery-powered beacon that employs state-of-the-art mid-wave IR (MWIR), long-wave IR (LWIR) and near IR (NIR) laser technology to emit an eyesafe signal that is easily detected by presently deployed targeting pods. Phase I will demonstrate, evaluate and deliver a prototype battery operated, hand held laser beacon with a target range of 12 nautical miles. The initial effort will focus on determining the design space available for miniaturization, packaging and cost reduction of laser devices with proven performance to meet the needs of the application. Feasibility will be established for further miniaturizing the unit to a size consistent with currently deployed strobes, and for satisfying requirements for reliable operation under global operating temperatures and conditions, including submersion in seawater to 66' and operation in an electromagnetic environment. In Phase I, a long-range field test will also be conducted on the prototype unit at Northrop Grumman using their LITENING targeting pod. The Phase II effort will focus on completing a ruggedized product design and proving out reliability and performance. BENEFITS: The Aerius micro combat ID beacon will address a critical need for missions support personnel to be able to readily discriminate between friendly and unfriendly troops at continuously increasing distances from the center of activity by providing a small, compact, wearable module with long range visibility and capability of surviving in harsh environments. Moreover, it will enable incoming aircraft and ground troops to quickly and accurately indentify friendly troops in dynamically-changing battlefield environments. Upon the successful completion of the Phase I and Phase II program, Aerius' combat ID beacon will have immediate utility for current military operations, and since it is designed to work with current targeting pods, Aerius' beacon can be deployed as soon as production begins. Therefore, a key objective for the combined Phase I and Phase II effort will be to finalize a beacon design that is ready for production by the end of the program. Moreover, this product would have broad appeal across all branches of the military, and therefore, the commercial volume potential is substantial.
Small Business Information at Submission:
Aerius Photonics, LLC.
2223 Eastman Ave., Suite B Ventura, CA 93003
Number of Employees: