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Rad Hard, Back-illuminated, SOI CMOS Star Tracker

Award Information

Department of Defense
Missile Defense Agency
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2003 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Voxtel Inc.
15985 NW Schendel Avenue Suite 200 Beaverton, OR 97006-
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2003
Title: Rad Hard, Back-illuminated, SOI CMOS Star Tracker
Agency / Branch: DOD / MDA
Contract: DASG6003P0215
Award Amount: $70,000.00


To satisfy the demand for a reliable, high sensitivity, radiation hardened imager for space vehicle navigation star tracking tasks, we will design, simulate and optimize a radiation hard, silicon-on-insulator (SOI), fully-depleted, back-illuminatedstartracking sensor with enhanced sensitivity and centroiding capability. The device is unique in its performance and its radiation hardness. Radiation performance is enhanced through a reduced cross-section charge-collection region, sub-pixel/sub-frameradiation event mitigation, n-type epitaxial silicon, and SOI CMOS materials and processing.The mixed-signal SOI CMOS star tracker functionality includes random readout, non-destructive readout, binning, windowing, and Fowler/slope sampling for event and noise removal, and the imager is operated at app. 2,500 fps with 40 star tracks.The back-illuminated imager is made cost-effective, manufacturable, and robust, by implementing commercially available materials and standard semiconductor processes, including those required for back thinning, which is performed in a very simple manner inthe semiconductor fab and requires no post-processing. Unique to this program is the ability of the APS device to be radiation hard with high, wideband sensitivity from the EUV through to the NIR spectral range. These characteristics make it ideal for the growing market for commercial satellite startrackers.Additionally, the nearly ideal responsivity benefits a broad range of optical microscopy, spectroscopy, nondestructive test, surveillance, autonomous navigation, remote sensing, and astronomy applications. The EUV response of the detector benefitssubmicron photolithography, x-ray spectroscopy, plasma diagnostics, and nuclear physics.

Principal Investigator:

George Williams
Managing Director

Business Contact:

George Williams
Managing Director
Small Business Information at Submission:

2640 SW Georgian Place Portland, OR 97201

EIN/Tax ID: 931285205
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No