Three Dimensional Volumetric Terahertz Scanning for Aerospace Non Destructive Evaluation

Award Information
Agency:
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$600,000.00
Award Year:
2005
Program:
STTR
Phase:
Phase II
Contract:
NNL05AA43C
Award Id:
72095
Agency Tracking Number:
030213
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
n/a
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
2925 Boardwalk, Ann Arbor, MI, 48104
Hubzone Owned:
N
Minority Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
788133387
Principal Investigator:
David Zimdars
Principal Investigator
(734) 864-5639
dzimdars@picometrix.com
Business Contact:
Robin Risser
CEO
(734) 864-5605
rrisser@picometrix.com
Research Institute:
Rice University
Heidi Thornton
Office of Sponsored Research
Houston, TX, 77251
(713) 348-6204
Nonprofit college or university
Abstract
NASA and the aerospace industry are beginning to utilize terahertz (THz) reflection imaging (for example, examining the space shuttle external tank sprayed on foam insulation for voids and disbonds). THz non destructive evaluation (NDE) imaging is widely applicable to composite resin, ceramic, plastic, natural, and other non-metallic materials. Current commercial equipment is capable of 2D raster scanning, collecting THz waveforms from a very narrow depth range. THz NDE technology can be more fully exploited if high speed 3D THz imaging is realized. Phase II work will enable objects many inches thick to be imaged in 3D an order of magnitude faster than current 2D imaging configurations. We will develop and demonstrate the following innovative imaging methodologies for high speed, high sensitivity 3D NDE imaging: 1) Improved 3-dimensional THz Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) and Background-free THz SAR (rapid imaging); 2)Travel-time 3D Reflection THz tomography (high resolution 3D structure); and 3) Interferometric THz time-of-flight bulk imaging (greater sensitivity to small voids and disbonds). We will enhance our Phase I tomographic testbed, construct an improved high resolution co-linear reflection transceiver, modify the transceiver for interferometry, and deliver a software suite of imaging algorithms for the T-Ray 2000 THz NDE platform.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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