NASA SBIR 2008 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 08-2 S1.03-9640
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Passive Microwave Technologies
PROPOSAL TITLE: Low Cost Automated Module Assembly for 180 GHz Devices

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
NxGen Electronics, Inc.
9771 Clairemont Mesa Blvd., Suite A
San Diego, CA 92124 - 1300
(858) 309-6610

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Donald Hayashigawa
9771 Clairemont Mesa Blvd
San Diego, CA 92124 - 1332
(858) 309-6610

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 7 to 8

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Despite the obvious advantages of millimeter wave technology, a major barrier to expanded use is high assembly costs due to: need for specialized equipments; need for precision impacts on yields; design technologies for manufacturability; and experienced personnel with demonstrated track records.
The challenges of this R&D project are to expand and fully develop the Phase 1 technologies for:
• Methods to use common manufacturing equipment to achieve the high accuracy die placement required for millimeter wave frequencies (+/- 5 micron accuracy)
• Automation methods and processes to achieving speed and precision for production of low cost modules
• Modeling to arrive at cost effective trade-offs for achieving customer specifications with minimum capital investment and labor cost
As part of the research, NxGen will conduct a demonstration effort utilizing two existing JPL module designs facilitating the collection statistical data both in terms of yields as well as baseline data for cost estimating.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Since 2003 JPL has been developing Miniature MMIC low power radiometers for a number of observational satellites employing both infrared (IR) and microwave (MW) atmospheric sounders. Clouds are almost completely opaque at infrared wavelengths, satellites require cloud free observation. Polar Orbiting Environmental Satellites (POES) provide coverage in relatively narrow swaths, and with revisit time of 12-24 hours. GeoSTAR offers the possibility of MW temperature and water vapor soundings as well as rain mapping from GEO. The project will develop the infrastructure to assemble thousands of devices necessary to support these and other similar NASA/JPL projects, while providing the opportunity for commercialization in Phase 3.
Bids on future requirements at NASA will be:
Surface Water Land Hydrology & topology (SWOT)
Polar Orbiting Environmental Satellite
Wilkerson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP)

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Commercial applications of millimeter wave modules are important to many applications which include:
 Radar applications (e.g., imaging radar, radio frequency identification, speed detection)
 Wireless uncompressed video/audio transport (MP3, HDTV),
 Wireless local and personal area networking (WLAN and WPAN),
 High accuracy sensors (e.g., Doppler, displacement, sub-wavelength resolution microwave impedance microscopy, passive radiometry measurements)
 Extremely high security communications and sensors with very low probability of intercept (LPI).

The drive for millimeter wave products and systems in wireless applications results from:
• Improved performance for both short and long range distance applications
• Operate at higher data rates
• Results in small diameter transmitter and receiver elements
• Have good propagation characteristics under all weather conditions
• Opens new frequency operating regions

These are only some of the examples of applications that will benefit from our proposed work to establish automated low cost assembly processes for mmWave modules.

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.

Architectures and Networks
Data Input/Output Devices
Guidance, Navigation, and Control
Large Antennas and Telescopes

Form Generated on 08-03-09 13:26