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Compact Lightweight Deformation Imager (CLDI)

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Missile Defense Agency
Contract: HQ0860-21-C-7113
Agency Tracking Number: B2-2995
Amount: $1,497,972.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: MDA19-010
Solicitation Number: 19.2
Solicitation Year: 2019
Award Year: 2021
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2020-12-21
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2022-12-20
Small Business Information
200 Westside Square Suite 320
Huntsville, AL 35801-4875
United States
DUNS: 129074840
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: Yes
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 john harchanko
 (256) 562-0087
Business Contact
 David Chenault
Phone: (256) 562-0087
Research Institution

The rapidly emerging capabilities of hypersonic-velocity weapons from many different countries require the acceleration of technologies that can maintain the United States’ role of military dominance both at home and abroad. Critical technologies are needed to ensure the operation of our intercepting airframe, seeker and seeker window(s) remains nominal. Acting against the desired performance in these flight regimes are the resulting aero-optical effects which can be extremely severe—blinding the seeker or even causing catastrophic failure. The combination of altitude and velocity can create tremendous heat loading of the outer structure including the seeker window. To achieve the required performance for an interceptor, the optimization of several critical technologies will be required; there is no known silver bullet except careful system engineering. System engineering includes intensive modeling and subsequent testing within a Ground Test Facility (GTF) to ensure the seeker window performance is well understood across the various flight profiles. The GTF usually involves specialized test fixtures to mount the seeker window in a generalized configuration. In addition, extensive GTF modifications are required. The application of the resulting data to the actual nosecone configuration requires further modeling and interpretation. These test fixtures, GTF modifications, and lack of applicability of the resulting data directly result from limitations of the aero-optical instrumentation. This Phase II proposes the development of new aero-optical instrumentation that can fit within the most advanced missile geometries to eliminate GTF modifications and improve the applicability of the resulting data to a specific nosecone. In Phase I, Polaris demonstrated a new instrument, the Compact Lightweight Deformation Imager (CLDI) which measures window shape deformation using a Shack-Hartmann Wave Front Sensor. The proof-of-concept compared very favorably to an interferometric instrument. In Phase II, the CLDI capability will be further developed and demonstrated to perform accurate window shape deformation measurements from within a common forebody test fixture. Approved for Public Release | 20-MDA-10643 (3 Dec 20)

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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