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Compact High-Degrees-of-Freedom Freeform Beam-Expander Optics

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: 80NSSC21C0168
Agency Tracking Number: 193536
Amount: $749,998.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: S2
Solicitation Number: SBIR_19_P2
Solicitation Year: 2019
Award Year: 2021
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2021-02-23
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2023-02-22
Small Business Information
15985 Northwest Schendel Avenue, Suite 200
Beaverton, OR 97006-6703
United States
DUNS: 124348652
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Hooman Akhavan
 (971) 223-5646
Business Contact
 Debra Ozuna
Title: debraozuna
Phone: (503) 260-6869
Research Institution

To address the need for compact, lightweight, and cost-effective high-magnification beam-expanding optics for missions such as NASA Langley Research Centerrsquo;s Doppler Aerosol Wind (DAWN) lidar system, a Voxtel-led teammdash;including Dr. Julie Bentley of Bentley Optical Design, collocated with the Institute of Opticsnbsp; at the University of Rochestermdash;proposes to implement a novel distortion-free beam-expanding optical assembly based on 3D freeform gradient-index (GRIN) optical materials. Specifically in this effort, the goal is to implement a very compact folded-light-path four-mirror beam expander, optimized for 2,053-nm wavelength laser light, that implements a custom-engineered aberration-reducing 3D GRIN phase-corrector plate (PCP) to simultaneously minimize aberrations and maximize beam quality.The PCP will be manufactured using Voxtelrsquo;s Volumetric Index-of-Refraction Gradient-Index Optics (VIRGO) technology platform, which deposits variable index-of-refraction transparent nanocomposite materials with optical properties that vary voxel by voxel in an additive manufacturing process to realize high-performance freeform GRIN optics. The ability to form freeform gradient optical-index functions enables the use of previously unavailable complex higher-order polynomial functions in optical path design, while also providing the capability to reduce geometric and chromatic aberrations.

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

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