3L (Lightweight, Low-Cost, Low-light) Focal Plane for Persistent Surveillance
ABSTRACT: Toyon in partnership with FLIR EOC, proposes to leverage recent advances in large-format hybrid (CMOS/InGaAs) focal plane arrays and composite focal plane array technology to develop a low-cost, SWaP (Size, Weight, and Power) optimized, high resolution imaging system capable of providing wide area persistent imagery within the near infrared (NIR) to short wave infrared (SWIR) spectrum. By taking advantage of low light conditions encountered in nighttime urban environments Toyon"s solution can eliminate the need for cryogenically cooled thermal imagers and instead rely on the lightweight and low-er-cost solution offered by InGaAs FPAs. In Phase I, Toyon performed a series of trade studies and inves-tigations to determine the optimum camera architecture that balances performance with cost. In this Phase II effort, Toyon proposes to develop a prototype 5.24 Mega-pixel sub-camera based on Phase I findings. This sub-camera will utilize a sparse 2x2 array of 1 Mega-pixel InGaAs FPAs precision aligned on a mul-ti-layer, optically polished ceramic substrate. The Phase II prototype camera will ultimately be one of four sub-cameras used to deliver a fully contiguous 21 Mega-pixel image. The four sub-camera system could be developed in a follow-on effort. A final sub-camera prototype, performance results, and manufacturing readiness assessment will be delivered by contract end. BENEFIT: The successful completion of this effort will lead to the development of a low-light, 21 Mega-pixel, wide area persistent imaging system capable of being deployed on mid-sized UAVs. At the end of the Phase II effort, Toyon will have developed a prototype, 5.24 Mega-pixel, NIR/SWIR (near infrared/shortwave infrared), wide-field-of-view (WFOV) imaging system. The design will be composed of three subsystems to include the lens assembly, the composite focal plane (CFPA) assembly, and the signal condition-ing/processing/data transport electronics. Such a system will enable smaller UAVs to provide IR-based, wide-area-motion-imagery that historically only larger UAVs have been able to provide. In addition to being deployed in Air Force tactical networks, the main commercial prospect is in law enforcement, bor-der security, and surveillance.
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Toyon Research Corp.
6800 Cortona Drive Goleta, CA -
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