Resident Space Object Detection and Characterization System

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8718-09-C-0037
Agency Tracking Number: F083-223-2219
Amount: $99,994.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2009
Solicitation Year: 2008
Solicitation Topic Code: AF083-223
Solicitation Number: 2008.3
Small Business Information
6201 East Oltorf St., Suite 400, Austin, TX, 78741
DUNS: 100651798
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Byron Zollars
 Chief Scientist
 (512) 389-9990
Business Contact
 Keith Jamison
Title: Vice President
Phone: (512) 389-9990
Research Institution
Traditional means of searching a wide angular field for a threat or unknown object involves scanning a narrow field of view optical system or building a system with heavy wide-field-of-view optics.  Neither method is optimum for an on-orbit system, as there are severe weight, reliability, complexity, and cost penalties.  There is a need for space optical systems that have high sensitivity and can stare over a wide field of view without the complexity, size, and weight associated with scanners or wide-angle optics. Nanohmics proposes to build and test a novel optical system for space situational awareness that has a spherical field of regard, comprising two back-to-back sensors each with a 2π steradian (hemispherical) field of view. The system has no moving parts, has a very small depth along the optical axes, and can be constructed from light injection-molded polymers or space-quality glasses.  The proposed Resident Space Object Detection and Characterization System (RSODCS) combines non-imaging optics with integrated reflective surfaces to achieve a spherical optical field of regard without sacrificing angular accuracy, sensitivity, or collection aperture.  The RSODCS system stares for extended periods of time, detecting events with signatures that may indicate activity by a resident space object. BENEFIT: By the end of the Phase I program, Nanohmics will identify a major defense contractor as a potential commercial partner that is capable of further developing the RSODSC system, integrating it with existing satellite systems and payloads, and who can shepherd the technology through DoD acquisition.  Nanohmics initial commercialization strategy is to license the technology developed in the Phase I and Phase II program to leading defense contractors or companies that supply space systems to the Air Force.

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

Agency Micro-sites

SBA logo
Department of Agriculture logo
Department of Commerce logo
Department of Defense logo
Department of Education logo
Department of Energy logo
Department of Health and Human Services logo
Department of Homeland Security logo
Department of Transportation logo
Environmental Protection Agency logo
National Aeronautics and Space Administration logo
National Science Foundation logo
US Flag An Official Website of the United States Government