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Uncooled Photomechanical Terahertz Imagers

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA9550-10-C-0122
Agency Tracking Number: F09B-T33-0285
Amount: $99,926.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: AF09-BT33
Solicitation Number: 2009.B
Timeline
Solicitation Year: 2009
Award Year: 2010
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2010-05-25
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2011-02-25
Small Business Information
15 Cabot Road, Woburn, MA, 01801
DUNS: 004841644
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Matthew Erdtmann
 Senior Scientist
 (781) 935-1200
 merdtmann@agiltron.com
Business Contact
 Sarah Weidlein
Title: Administrative Assistant
Phone: (781) 935-1200
Email: sweidlein@agiltron.com
Research Institution
 University of Massachusetts Lowell
 Linda Concino
 Office of Research Admin (ORA)
600 Suffolk St., 2nd Floor S
Lowell, MA, 1854
 (978) 934-4723
 Nonprofit college or university
Abstract
Agiltron and the University of Massachusetts Lowell will develop a transformational terahertz (THz) imager based on Agiltron’s established optical readout photomechanical imaging technology. The photomechanical imager contains a MEMS-based focal plane array that transduces THz radiation into a visible signal for capture by a high-performance CCD imager. By leveraging the advances made in the fields of MEMS processing and silicon-based imagers, the photomechanical THz imager will meet the Air Force performance objective of NEP < 10–12 W/Hz1/2 from 1–10 THz and frame rate > 30 fps, all while featuring uncooled operation and a dramatic reduction in size, weight, and power (SWAP) and cost over commercially available THz imagers. In Phase I, through extensive materials investigation, imager testing, and performance modeling, we will extend the photomechanical imaging platform to cover the THz range and meet the Air Force performance objectives. BENEFIT: The proposed uncooled photomechanical THz imager development program represents a major technology breakthrough, facilitating wide use of these highly capable imagers in military applications. Because THz radiation can penetrate through most materials, applications for THz imagers include detection of concealed weapons, land mines and improvised explosive devices, chemical agents, and void and crack formation on aircraft skins. Also, because THz radiation readily transmits through smoke and fog, THz imagers are also useful for target acquisition and identification, terrain avoidance for aircraft, and brownout circumvention for helicopters and other rotorcraft. Targeted DoD end user agencies include the Air Force, Army, Navy, and Marines.

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

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