Rendezvous and Docking Sensor Suite

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNM04AA23C
Agency Tracking Number: 022383
Amount: $599,994.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2004
Solicitation Year: 2002
Solicitation Topic Code: H7.02
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
6767 Old Madison Pike, Suite 410, Huntsville, AL, 35806-2181
DUNS: 363526914
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Stephen Granade
 Principal Investigator
 (256) 971-0036
Business Contact
 Keith Farr
Title: President
Phone: (256) 971-0036
Research Institution
In recent decades, NASA?s interest in spacecraft rendezvous and proximity operations has grown. Additional instrumentation is needed to improve manned docking operations? safety, as well as to enable telerobotic operation of spacecraft or completely autonomous rendezvous and docking. To address this need, we propose a suite of active sensors that will provide range and bearing information to a docking craft at distances of kilometers, and will provide 6-degree-of-freedom information at distances of hundreds of meters. The suite of sensors will include NASA?s Advanced Video Guidance Sensor (AVGS) for short-range operations, and will build on that sensor?s flight heritage by adding a laser range and bearing finder (RBF). There is a need for a laser RBF that can operate to distances of 5 km; currently, no such space-qualified RBF exists. For this reason we propose building a wide-angle laser RBF. The wide angle removes the need for scanning systems such as gimbals, eliminating moving parts and making the sensor simpler and space qualification easier. The RBF will work from 5 km in to distances on the order of tens of meters, an operating range that will allow it to mesh with AVGS, and with a range accuracy of 1 m.

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

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