NASA SBIR 00-1 SOLICITATION

FORM 9B - PROJECT SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER 00-1 13.05-9060 (Chron: 000941 )
PROJECT TITLE
Radiometer Calibration with an Active Noise Source



TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)
This study will provide the basis to advance microwave radiometer calibration technology using internal active devices. CME proposes the design of a small, automated, stepped cold/warm noise source injection calibration device to simplify on-board calibration. We will build upon existing FET cold noise technology and develop an innovative calibration concept applicable to spaceborne, airborne, and ground-based radiometers. For direct access to leading edge foundries, we propose to investigate and characterize emerging Raytheon FET technologies and develop innovative methods of improving radiometer calibration. This effort leverages CME's microwave radiometer R&D experience on our Air Force Phase II SBIR contract for a small ground-based, multi-frequency microwave radiometer. Teamed with Raytheon's Microwave Remote Sensing Group and Dr. L.P. Dunleavy from University of South Florida's Wireless and Microwave research program, CME can effectively address NASA's need for new calibration technologies. Phase I will result in a device design for a new microwave radiometer calibration system capable of replacing on-board, complex and expensive state-of-practice techniques. This effort will provide a solid foundation leading to a proven automated calibration device for smaller on-board microwave radiometers in future spacecraft sensors.



POTENTIAL COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS
Advances in active calibration technology will benefit Atmospheric Scintillation Prediction, Satellite Cloud Ice Prediction, Deep Space Water/Cloud/Gas Prediction, and Atmospheric Refraction Prediction among others. Radiometers are stand-alone instruments as well as support instruments to radars. Space altimeters need radiometers to correct for water vapor path delay. Scatterometers need correction for atmospheric path loss. A new "smart" calibration device will result in better sensitivity and accuracy for NASA radiometers. The improvements will benefit ground-based propagation measurement instruments, smaller lightweight satellite and airborne radiometers, and especially unattended vehicle (UV) radiometers used for varied applications. Unattended microwave radiometers/sensors need autonomous calibration devices. Through our development of a microwave radiometer for the Air Force, CME has performed extensive commercialization studies related to microwave radiometers. Applications for a new calibration device are directly proportionate to the opportunities for our microwave radiometer. Our commercialization interests include communications fade loss detection, airborne "hot spot" forest fire detection, medical microwave imaging, in-flight ice detection, and a small ground-based microwave sensor for intelligence missions. Using MMIC and MEMs technology to miniaturize the radiometer for our Air Force customer, has expanded our interest in developing an improved calibration device for this and other applications such as NASA.



NAME AND ADDRESS OF PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR (Name, Organization Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip)
David J. Arft
Custom Manufacturing & Engineering, Inc.
2904 44th Avenue North
St. Petersburg , FL   33714 - 3804



NAME AND ADDRESS OF OFFEROR (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip)
Custom Manufacturing & Engineering, Inc.
2904 44th Avenue North
St. Petersburg , FL   33714 - 3804