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Flight Control Technology for Tightly Controlled Hard Target Impact

Award Information

Department of Defense
Air Force
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2008 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Arete Associates
1550 Crystal Drive Suite 703 Arlington, VA -
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2008
Title: Flight Control Technology for Tightly Controlled Hard Target Impact
Agency / Branch: DOD / USAF
Contract: FA8651-08-M-0126
Award Amount: $99,986.00


This project develops an innovative, enabling technology for precision attitude control of guided munitions. An imaging sensor system is used to precisely measure airframe attitude relative to the velocity vector, eliminating the time dependent heading angle inaccuracies common to all GPS/INS based attitude measurements. During the downward flight of a guided munition, a body-fixed, boresighted imaging sensor detects the expansion of the scene as the munition approaches the ground. Innovative Image Processing algorithms are used to determine the Imagery Center of Expansion (ICE). Since the scene expands radially away from the velocity vector, the number of camera pixels between the ICE and the boresighted munition centerline is a direct measurement of the velocity vector angle. The Phase I program simulates the imaging sensor, develops image processing algorithms, creates an electrical/software architecture concept for real-time operation, and examines ultra-high bandwidth attitude control actuators required for precision airframe control consistent with the accurate angle measurement from Arete's imaging sensor system. The Phase II program will develop a prototype imaging sensor system that demonstrates the ability to measure the velocity vector angle in a real-time hardware-in-loop simulation. Phase III commercialization will be encouraged via demonstrations with government and industry primes.

Principal Investigator:

John Dennison
Director, Arete Sonoma

Business Contact:

David Kane
VP Optical Systems Division
Small Business Information at Submission:

P.O. Box 2607 Winnetka, CA 91306

EIN/Tax ID: 952954108
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No