SBIR Phase II: MEMS Deformable Mirrors for Laser Applications

Award Information
National Science Foundation
Award Year:
Phase II
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Iris AO
CA, Berkeley, CA, 94704-1717
Hubzone Owned:
Minority Owned:
Woman Owned:
Principal Investigator:
Michael Helmbrecht
(510) 849-2375
Business Contact:
Michael Helmbrecht
(510) 849-2375
Research Institution:

What is the proposed innovation? This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase II project will advance the state of the art in compact 360-degree camera systems, achieving sizes of about 1/8 of current systems, without compromising the quality or resolution of the optics. Convex mirror based optics has resulted in the realization of very high-resolution ultra-wide angle camera systems. A fundamental limitation in these systems has been the size of the optics in relation to the size of the imaging sensor. Mirror diameters in the range of 10 times the size of the sensor have been achieved. The objective of this research is to overcome the above limitation and achieve mirror diameters at the level of 3-5 times the size of the sensor, keeping ultra high resolution across the entire field of view. In this Phase II project, a miniature high-resolution 360-degree prototype system including optics and camera sensor will be built to demonstrate this capability. What are the broader/commercial impacts of the proposed innovation? The broader impact of this project will be will to increase the market reach of ultra-wide angle cameras for multiple applications, including video-conferencing, robotics and home surveillance. This new approach to designing optics will result in substantially reducing the form factor of high-resolution wide-angle optics. The high-resolution camera sensors available in the consumer market today can be better used in very small ultra-wide angle video cameras with the ability for multiple remote users to decide where they want to look independent of each other. This has the potential of transforming the market for pan-tilt-zoom cameras to "solid-state pan/tilt/zoom" cameras. The very low size, weight and power cameras that would result from this research can result in small wireless, battery powered systems that would increase the proliferation of cameras for a variety of different applications.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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