SBIR Phase II: Digital Correlator Imaging Spectrometer For Submillimeter Astronomy
National Science Foundation
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Small Business Information
175 Clear Brook Road, Elmsford, NY, 10523
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractThis Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II research project will develop technology to significantly improve digital-auto-correlator spectrometer bandwidths and clock rates. Astronomers are increasing their reliance on digital auto-correlators for receiving sub-millimeter-wavelength signals buried in noise. For larger red-shift sources, bandwidths of tens of GHz are required. Digital spectrometers are also required to manage communications spectrum for wideband wireless software-defined radio systems. These systems under development are based on a radically new wireless-communications paradigm: the analog wireless signal is converted directly to the digital domain at RF frequencies. Wideband superconducting digital-RF hardware will result in extremely robust systems, with revolutionary new opportunities for handling complex waveforms (e.g. the Wideband Networking Waveform). Astronomers need compact spectrometers to study sources such as planetary atmospheres, molecular clouds, and extragalactic objects. Distant sources have very small signals that are red-shifted by as much as tens of GHz. Therefore, spectrometer bandwidth and sensitivity must be better than present instruments offer. Applying these technology elements to communications enables software-defined all-digital radio systems. Improvements in wireless communications are helping the U.S. to become more productive and socially active. Power efficiency and sensitivity will be orders of magnitude greater than conventional systems, while enabling software functionality and upgrades, at a fraction of the cost.
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