NASA SBIR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-1 S1.05-9739
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Detector Technologies for UV, X-Ray, Gamma-Ray and Cosmic-Ray Instruments
PROPOSAL TITLE: Silicon Microchannel Plate Large Area UV Detector

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Physical Optics Corporation
20600 Gramercy Place, Bldg. 100
Torrance, CA 90501 - 1821
(310) 320-3088

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Michael Gertsenshteyn
20600 Gramercy Place, Bldg. 100
Torrance, CA 90501 - 1821
(310) 320-3088

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 4 to 6

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
To address the NASA GSFC need for efficient UV photodetectors for NASA missions, such as the follow-on to FUV detectors of the Galaxy Evolution Explorer, Physical Optics Corporation (POC) proposes to develop a new Silicon Microchannel-Plate-Based Large-Area UV detector (UV-Si-MCP). It is based on a solar-blind, highly efficient GaN photocathode and POC's silicon microchannel plates (Si-MCPs). The high-quantum-efficiency, negative electron affinity GaN photocathodes will be fabricated directly on the entrance surface of the Si-MCP. This is possible because of the substrate's ability to withstand high temperatures and its compatibility with GaN application. This enables us to meet NASA requirements for a UV detector with high sensitivity, resolution, and reliability. The UV-Si-MCP offers high quantum efficiency (50%) and >10^9 channels, for better detection of faint objects with improved spatial and spectral resolution. In Phase I POC will demonstrate the feasibility of the UV-Si-MCP by fabricating and testing a preliminary prototype, exhibiting TRL-4. In Phase II POC will develop a fully functional (TRL-6) prototype with up to 10^9 readout channels and quantum efficiency up to 50%. The demonstrated results will offer NASA capabilities to improve our understanding of the origin of the universe and its evolution to modern form.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed highly efficient, large-area UV photodetector will directly contribute to the success of future NASA missions planned within several research programs, such as the Explorers, Discovery, Origins, Beyond Einstein, and Vision Missions. Current and future missions that will rely upon this technology include HST-STIS, GALEX, COS, EUVE, XMM-OM, CHIPS, and FAUST.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The testing and characterization of POC's large-size, highly sensitive UV photodetectors in government and independent research organizations will promote their utilization in a variety of non-NASA applications. We expect that besides missile plume detection, our UV-Si-MCPs will be used in scientific instrumentation for the investigation of fluorescence in organic and unorganic substances. We also expect that with other types of photocathodes deposited directly on the front surface of POC's MCP, the photodetectors developed will be successfully used in a very broad spectrum of applications, such as night vision, underwater vision and communications, and atmospheric research.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Large Antennas and Telescopes
Multifunctional/Smart Materials
Optical & Photonic Materials
Semi-Conductors/Solid State Device Materials

Form Generated on 09-18-07 17:50