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Jitter Reduction in Light Weight Beam Control Devices


TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Sensors, Sensors, Weapons, Weapons

OBJECTIVE: Develop methods or system designs that reduce angular errors from vibration on low mass, high performance, laser beam control assemblies.

DESCRIPTION: This topic seeks innovative methods to reduce vibration and jitter in laser systems, while leveraging low mass components, to provide better beam control accuracy.Successful utilization of directed energy requires precision in pointing accuracy.However, many laser platforms are at a disadvantage as Size, Weight, and Power (SWAP) requirements work against the ability to dampen vibrations by traditional means.For this topic, innovative methods are sought that might include mechanisms that are either passive or active in nature, utilize beneficial tolerances for the assembly, or other means to improve pointing accuracy.Methods that enable the use of additive manufacturing, for rapid development cycles at reduced cost, or to further light weight beam control systems to meet technical objectives are also desired.

PHASE I: Develop a concept for a low jitter beam control system that utilizes light weight components. Manufacture prototypes of the key mechanisms in a beam control system or the active components, in order to demonstrate the concept to dampen jitter in a beam control system made of lightweight materials.Additive manufacturing can be used to facilitate prototyping.Develop test metrics and plans to mature the design in Phase II.

PHASE II: Develop and integrate the components needed to test the environmental performance in a more mature prototype.Utilize vibration tables or other means of inducing jitter to characterize the jitter of the prototype design.Additive manufacturing can be used to rapidly evolve the concept.Document the key characteristics of the design and the prototype’s performance.

PHASE III: Transition design concepts to a government program of record for further development use in tests.Collect required data to support qualification of the design for program use.

KEYWORDS: Beam Control, Low SWaP, Jitter Reduction, Lightweight Materials, Additive Manufacturing


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