AR Coated Zinc Sulfide Advanced Window Technology
Agency / Branch:
DOD / MDA
Ground based interceptors will benefit from the use of a dual color focal plane and wideband seekers for improved target acquisition and target discrimination. Zinc Sulfide (ZnS), uncoated and anti-reflective coated, has been under evaluation as a "bolt-in" replacement window for the THAAD seeker system to replace the current sapphire window. The resulting data from the Phase I development efforts has shown that Zinc sulfide presents a wideband capability, has the structural properties, demonstrates superior optical properties, and will result in a significant system cost reduction of 70%-80% for the seeker window. The optical transmission capabilities of the current sapphire window exhibit a limited waveband. A seeker window which has the ability to transmit at a wider waveband will be beneficial for target acquisition and target discrimination. The selection of ZnS as an alternate seeker window material commenced with a rigorous computational fluid dynamics effort to predict the worst case aerodynamic heating combined with finite element thermal and structural analysis used to construct a statistical analysis model. The thermophysical property testing and optical property testing conducted under two (2) independent MDA Phase I Sbir efforts has validated this analysis. It was shown that ZnS provides the thermostructural properties and optical properties for uncoated material and anti-reflective coated material. To prepare ZnS for system consideration, flight test, and Block Upgrade, thermostructural evaluation under worst case flight conditions and high fidelity over-testing of the worst case thermal conditions will be conducted to validate the selection of zinc sulfide. Commercially available multispectral zinc sulfide, which contains an anti-reflective coating, will be fabricated and tested in the AEDC/WO Hypersonic Wind Tunnel to validate its thermostructural capabilities. A total of 10 test runs will be conducted consisting of three (3) calibration runs followed by the testing of seven (7) ZnS windows in order to obtain statistical data. Fully instrumented, full-scale forecones and windows will be used for these tests. The resulting data will be used to conduct a 3D structural analysis and verify ZnS probability of survival.
Small Business Information at Submission:
VICUS TECHNOLOGIES, LLC
86 York St., Suite 1 Kennebunk, ME 04043
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