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Radiation Hardened Machine Vision Computer Solution

Description:

TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Sensors, Electronics, Space Platforms 

OBJECTIVE: Develop a low Size Weight and Power (SWaP) and space-qualifiable computer-hardware solution for next generation machine vision applications. 

DESCRIPTION: This topic seeks innovative reprogrammable computer hardware technology to host machine vision algorithms. Hardware solutions should be specifically designed to support computationally intensive operations and low-latency throughput of large format image data and intermediate floating-point full-frame products. The engineering challenge of such a hardware solution is further compounded for space-based sensor and seeker applications due to the need for computer hardware that is radiation hardened and capable of operating under low SWaP restrictions. Successful proposers will address both the computational and environmental challenges of the envisioned computer hardware solution. 

PHASE I: Demonstrate proof of concept through design, modeling, and/or initial hardware testing. Demonstrate the scalability of the proposed processor hardware technology in order to keep pace with modern large-format imaging sensors, emerging algorithm processing and memory requirements. 

PHASE II: Refine the hardware design and build an initial demonstration hardware prototype for benchtop testing against government furnished sample imagery and processing algorithms. Assess the performance of the prototype hardware in processing the government furnished information (GFI) and provide figures of merit to allow the government to quantify the performance of the developed processing hardware. Support testing of the processing hardware at a government sponsored facility for the purposes of validating the radiation hardened capability of the prototype hardware. 

PHASE III: Integrate the hardware with GFI machine vision algorithms and sensor technology into a government sponsored ground test facility or designated test platform. Provide ground test support, hardware redesigns/upgrades, and integration activities associated with the sensor testbed. 

REFERENCES: 

1: http://www.airforcemag.com/DRArchive/Pages/2017/September%202017/September%2022%202017/STRATCOM-Prepares-for-War-USAF-Looks-to-Give-Airmen-Back-Their-Time-Travis-C-17-Delivers-Aid-to-Mexico.aspx

2:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vision_processing_unit

3:  https://docs.house.gov/meetings/AS/AS29/20180417/108171/HHRG-115-AS29-Wstate-GreavesS-20180417.PDF

KEYWORDS: Radiation Hardening, Machine Vision, Space-based Seekers, Computing, Hardware 

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