A Lightweight, Inexpensive, Low-Power Star Tracker for Small Satellites

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Missile Defense Agency
Contract: N00178-04-C-3108
Agency Tracking Number: B2-0537
Amount: $0.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Awards Year: 2004
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
AEROASTRO, INC.
20145 Ashbrook Place,, Ashburn, VA, 20147
DUNS: 605603984
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Ray Zenick
 Program Manager
 (858) 481-3785
 ray.zenick@aeroastro.com
Business Contact
 Mike Conley
Title: Vice President, Programs
Phone: (703) 723-9800
Email: mike.conley@aeroastro.com
Research Institution
 MIT
 Sedwick
 77 Massachusetts Ave., E19-750,
Cambridge, MA, 02210
 (617) 253-7831
 Nonprofit college or university
Abstract
In partnership with MIT, AeroAstro will continue the development of a highly innovative lightweight, inexpensive, low power star tracker for small satellite applications. No solution currently exists currently in this area of the trade space. The design developed in Phase I takes advantage of the processing capabilities embedded in newer CMOS imagers to reduce power consumption and limit the amount of glue logic required, and exploits highly compact pattern recognition algorithms to find star pairs using a minimal star catalog. The solution offers accuracy better than 100 arc-seconds, meeting the unique requirements of small maneuverable space vehicles at a fraction of the cost, mass, and power consumption of larger, higher impact star trackers. In Phase II, the star tracker design will be advanced to a Critical Design Review and a flight-prototype will be constructed and tested.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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