Improved Laser Diodes for Space Laser Communications

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Missile Defense Agency
Contract: HQ0006-07-C-7750
Agency Tracking Number: B063-020-0526
Amount: $99,604.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2007
Solicitation Year: 2006
Solicitation Topic Code: MDA06-020
Solicitation Number: 2006.3
Small Business Information
NLIGHT PHOTONICS
5408 NE 88th Street, Bldg E, Vancouver, WA, 98665
DUNS: 799811646
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Mark DeFranza
 Principal Investigator
 (360) 566-4472
 mark.defranza@nlight.net
Business Contact
 Jake Bell
Title: VP Defense Group
Phone: (360) 713-5155
Email: jake.bell@nlight.net
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
We propose to perform analytical and empirical studies of laser diode packages in regards to long-term reliability for use in the space environment. Our approach will be to develop a physics based understanding of the failure mechanisms observed due to operation in vacuum and radiation environments. We expect to be able to mitigate these failure mechanisms through nLight’s laser diode design and fabrication capabilities. We anticipate that these failure mechanisms can be significantly reduced through the use of nLight’s, diode and package designs, advanced materials and fabrication techniques, and our volume manufacturing capabilities. We have demonstrated, at 808nm, that we can meet the long-term goal of 150 watts per bar, and have further demonstrated very high efficiency (>65%) diode performance at these wavelengths. We anticipate our package designs can be made robust for use in the space environment to meet a 10,000-hour lifetime goal. This would enable high confidence deployment of our laser packages for space-based applications such as LIDAR, communications, and other programs requiring high power laser diode pumps.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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