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Multi-Axis Doppler Direction Finder System for Relative Position and Attitude…

Award Information

Department of Defense
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2007 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Tethers Unlimited, Inc.
11711 N. Creek Pkwy S., Suite D113 Bothell, WA 98011-8804
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2007
Title: Multi-Axis Doppler Direction Finder System for Relative Position and Attitude Determination
Agency / Branch: DOD / DARPA
Contract: W31P4Q-08-C-0075
Award Amount: $98,974.00


The interest in formation and cluster-based satellite applications has grown considerably in recent years, especially as launch costs have dropped and the availability of secondary rides have increased. Unfortunately, the realization of these applications has proven difficult because of challenges such as station keeping and collision avoidance. In this proposed Phase I effort, TUI will demonstrate the performance of a relative attitude and position sensor that uses a unique combination of omni-directional antennas, Doppler direction finding techniques, and a deeply integrated ranging channel. Previous experiments done by TUI indicate that angular accuracy will easily exceed +/- 0.5 degrees while ranging measurements are expected to be at least +/- 10 cm. Because of the short distances typically used in formation-based micro-satellite applications, the power requirements-and hence the mass and volume requirements-will be relatively small. The performance-to-cost ratio of the proposed sensor is also expected to be quite high due to the use of readily available, low power RF components and high-speed digital logic. This will allow easy integration of the sensor into nano and micro-satellite platforms, facilitating the development of clustered spacecraft systems such as formation flying synthetic apertures and fractionated spacecraft architectures.

Principal Investigator:

Nestor Voronka
Chief Technologist

Business Contact:

Robert Hoyt
Small Business Information at Submission:

11711 N. Creek Pkwy S., Suite D113 Bothell, WA 98011

EIN/Tax ID: 911834561
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No