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Robust MEMs Oscillator Replacement for Quartz Crystal TCXO Oscillator


High Precision Temperature Compensated Crystal Oscillators (TCXO's) are used in GPS receivers, radio transceivers, and other radio frequency devices used in guided munitions. Quartz TCXO's are useful as a clock reference for these devices because of their high frequency stability, often well below 2 parts per million (ppm). However, quartz crystal devices are sensitive to both mechanical shock and rapid temperature changes. This is particularly an issue for high velocity gun-launched guided projectiles. This topic seeks a MEMS oscillator comparable in performance to temperature-compensated crystal oscillators (TCXO) in frequency accuracy, temperature stability, while providing similar or improved phase noise. The design must be survivable up to 30kgee high-G mechanical shocks during firing and temperature extremes with rapid fluctuations up to 250 degree F/min (surface) caused by aeroheating during flight. The design must also remain within or reduce the size, weight and power envelope of existing crystal oscillators it is meant to replace. The design must also perform within the operational constraints of existing crystal oscillators by exhibiting minimal aging and acceleration sensitivity, and by reaching a functional level of stability (<0.1 ppm / sec) within 0.25 seconds of application of power. PHASE I: Develop a proof of concept approach for a MEMS oscillator that meets the requirements as stated in the topic description. Support the concept design by material testing and analytical modeling. A critical demonstration experiment with components in a laboratory environment is desired. PHASE II: Further refine the approach and build prototype devices. Characterize the device’s frequency accuracy, temperature stability, phase accuracy and temperature and shock shifts. Deliver prototype devices for government testing. PHASE III: If Phase II is successful, the small business will provide support in transitioning the technology for Navy use in the Hyper Velocity Projectile program. Work with GPS receiver manufacturers to integrate the MEMS oscillator in GPS receivers. Develop a plan to determine the effectiveness of the replacement MEMs Oscillators in an operationally relevant environment. Support the Navy with certifying and qualifying the system for Navy use. When appropriate focus on scaling up manufacturing capabilities and commercialization plans.
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