NASA SBIR 2008 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 08-2 X1.03-8518
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Radiation Hardened/Tolerant and Low Temperature Electronics and Processors
PROPOSAL TITLE: Electronics Modeling and Design for Cryogenic and Radiation Hard Applications

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
CoolCAD Electronics
7101 Poplar Avenue
Takoma Park, MD 20912 - 4671
(240) 432-6535

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Siddharth Potbhare
7101 Poplar Avenue
Takoma Park, MD 20912 - 4761
(240) 432-6535

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 5 to 6

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
We are developing CAD tools, models and methodologies for electronics design for circuit operation in extreme environments with a focus on very low temperature and radiation effects. These new tools will help enable NASA to design next generation electronics especially for planetary projects including the Europa Jupiter System Mission. The new models and tools will be directly incorporated into industry standard CAD products to ensure their usability and extend their applicability to extreme environments. Such capabilities will significantly improve reliability, performance and lifetime of electronics that are used for space missions. This will be achieved through the development of novel compact and distributed device modeling capabilities for radiation-hard and extreme temperature instrument design, as well as techniques for circuit design that help to predict the vulnerability of circuits to degradation and upset from radiation. Research and development is indicating that standard bulk silicon CMOS and SOI processes operate well under these extreme conditions so that there is little need for NASA to commit to large expenditures for exotic materials. Models and CAD tools are relatively inexpensive as compared to fabrication costs; thus the results of this project should provide a very large return on investment.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The work proposed in this program will help NASA develop electronics for space missions where ambient temperatures are in the cryogenic region. We plan to provide Verilog-A models for compact SPICE-type simulators for electronics design in radiation rich environments at cryogenic temperatures. This will help allow NASA to design and operate low temperature, radiation hard, ruggedized electronics for future space applications. The design tools will help to allow NASA to develop a unique capability in cryogenic and radiation hard instrument design. The tools will also provide a competitive advantage to develop specific radiation-hard and cryogenic operating circuits that NASA requires for their EJSM and related missions, including analog to digital converters and charge amplifiers. Related NASA commercial applications include low noise cryogenic detectors, infrared focal plane arrays and related long wavelength optical devices, and communication electronics.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
In addition to NASA, there is a large civilian space applications business, especially with respect to communications satellites. There is also a large commitment by the Department of Defense to space applications. This work should find applications with these types of organizations as well. There is also a need for cryogenic electronics in terrestrial low noise applications. Such applications can be found in infrared and far infrared optical detectors. Furthermore, any application where the input signal is extremely weak, and a very large signal to noise ratio is required, may be enhanced by cryogenic operation. The developing field of quantum computing is also in need of circuits operated at cryogenic temperatures as input and readout subsystems. CoolCAD is currently working with agencies and industry for developing design methodologies for infrared photo-detector arrays, and for very low noise communication circuits.

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.

Operations Concepts and Requirements
Radiation-Hard/Resistant Electronics
Simulation Modeling Environment
Ultra-High Density/Low Power

Form Generated on 08-03-09 13:26