Wide-Field-of-View (WFOV) Multiwaveband Multimode Seeker Technology
Agency / Branch:
DOD / USAF
ABSTRACT: The Air Force is seeking advanced seekers that integrate multiple modes of detection. In particular, this SBIR will pursue development of a Semi-active Laser (SAL) sensor and a passive infrared (IR) sensor into an integrated seeker for precision and agile munitions. The enhanced capability is required to address military operations in difficult environments such as urban terrain, to maneuver in cluttered environments, to offer precision targeting, and to minimize collateral damage. Multimode seeker operation also improves munition performance in GPS-denied environments and enables selectable man-in-the-loop operation. Operational mode selection permits in-flight target updates using a human-operated laser designator or autonomous guidance to the target using the passive mode seeker sensor information. A key challenge is to develop such a sensor with sufficiently small size, weight, and power so that it is compatible with munitions currently under development. Polaris Sensor Technologies, Inc. is addressing this need through development of a SAL seeker that will be integrated with Spectral Imaging Laboratory"s WFOV IR imager. The SAL seeker is based on technology demonstrated to have the desired detection range and angular sensitivity with existing laser designators and has a small volume enabling the integration of the two sensor modes into a monolithic unit. BENEFIT: Successful development of the Multimode WFOV Seeker will enhance warfighting capability and force projection by providing better precision, lower collateral damage, and flexible targeting. Commercialization of the technology will initially be focused on precision munitions, both at the Air Force and within the Army. Polaris has identified two Army programs which have the same requirements. Development of a common sensor for both agencies will lower cost to both. Further application could extend beyond air- or gun-launched munitions to sensors for targeting and ISR on unmanned aerial and ground vehicles (UAVs and UGVs). In particular, the TALON robot (the primary UGV used in Afghanistan today) has a requirement for a wide field of view camera. As UGVs add roles beyond simple reconnaissance (such as targeting), the sensor developed could serve in that role for these platforms. Commercial applications will be investigated including machine vision for manufacturing.
Small Business Information at Submission:
Polaris Sensor Technologies, Inc.
200 Westside Square Suite 320 Huntsville, AL 35801-
Number of Employees: