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SBIR Phase I: Low Cost Adaptive Electrically Tunable Lasers with Ultra-Wide…

Award Information

National Science Foundation
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2004 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Kent Optronics, Inc
40 Corporate Park Drive Hopewell Junction, NY 12533-
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: Yes
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2004
Title: SBIR Phase I: Low Cost Adaptive Electrically Tunable Lasers with Ultra-Wide Tuning Range
Agency: NSF
Contract: 0339684
Award Amount: $99,996.00


This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project is a feasibility study on electrically tunable lasers made from novel liquid crystal based tunable photonic crystals (TPC). As predicted by a theoretical model and experiment results, the tuning of the laser wavelength is realized via tuning the TPC stop band. When doped with lasing dye(s) and pumped by a pumping laser, electrically tunable lasing is expected over a wide spectral range of 200 nm. The lasers are also expected to have greater than 20% light-to-light efficiency in a robust, lightweight, compact, and low cost package. The Phase I effort is devoted to developing tunable lasers followed by performance improvement by researching the lasing action and the sources affecting the lasing performance. In addition, the feasibility of using other pumping sources will be explored. Due to the adaptive nature and low cost feature, the new tunable laser technology promises a powerful tool that instantly turns fixed wavelength laser or other incoherent light source into an electrically tunable laser source for various commercial/space/law/military applications. A single laser can replace multiple lasers for a certain spectral coverage to reduce the system cost. Next, a new display product will be created for viewfinder, small display panels for cameras and camcorder. In military and law enforcement side, active light modules and tunable laser sources are crucial components in Light Detection And Ranging (LIDAR), targeting, measuring, imaging, remote sensing, and display devices. In telecom, the use of tunable laser will save components inventory cost. In forensic, the advent of the tunable laser technology enables a miniaturization laser eavesdropping system to monitor conversations. In astronomy, tunable lasers are important for a sodium guide star laser. They are also power tools for scene simulation that is widely applied in military unit for cost reduction

Principal Investigator:

Le Li

Business Contact:

Le Li
Small Business Information at Submission:

Kent Optronics, Inc.
275 Martinel Dr. Suite W Kent, OH 44240

Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No