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Characterization of the Radiation and Reliability Response of Integrated-Optic Components
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There has been a significant increase in the use of integrated-optic devices in military applications ranging from data communication and telecommunication networks to antenna remoting, missile guidance and various sensors and instruments. To guarantee the reliability of all military systems which employ these devices it is crucial that they are evaluated in both real and simulated nuclear environments. These components have also become attractive for a variety of commercial space applications, due not least to their low power consumption, compact size and lightweight. Evaluation of device performance when subject to nuclear radiation is essential to prevent systems failures. In Phase I of the SBIR program, Brimrose proposes to evaluate and compare the performance of various integrated-optic components before and after exposure to EM radiation. In particular, characterizations will be made of optical waveguides, an acousto-optic tunable filter (AOTF) and an electro-optic modulator implemented on LiNbO3, the material most commonly used for the fabrication of integrated-optic devices. The Phase I program will define some of the critical parameters of component integration and of acousto-optic and electro-optic interactions on LiNbO3 when exposed to gamma radiation. This knowledge, coupled with our previous and on-going radiation studies of bulk-optic LiNbO3 devices, will enable integrated-optic components to be radiation hardened prior to system deployment. On completion of the Phase II program, Brimrose will be in a position to design and fabricate radiation hardened integrated-optic components for use by both the DoD community and for commercial satellite applications.
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