NASA SBIR 2015 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 15-1 S1.02-9516
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Microwave Technologies for Remote Sensing
PROPOSAL TITLE: Low-Loss Ferrite Components for NASA Missions

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Micro Harmonics Corporation
1320 Ohio Street, Suite H-1
Waynesboro, VA 22980 - 2467
(434) 409-4044

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr. David W Porterfield Jr.
1320 Ohio Street, Suite H-1
Waynesboro, VA 22980 - 2467
(434) 409-4044

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Dr. David W. Porterfield Jr.
1320 Ohio Street, Suite H-1
Waynesboro, VA 22980 - 2467
(434) 409-4044

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 5
End: 7

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Microwave Technologies for Remote Sensing is a Technology Available (TAV) subtopic that includes NASA Intellectual Property (IP). Do you plan to use the NASA IP under the award?

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Ferrite based isolators and circulators have been successfully demonstrated at microwave, millimeter-wave and submillimeter-wave frequencies. These components are nonreciprocal and thus highly useful for controlling standing waves and directing signal flow in frequency multiplier cascades, heterodyne, radar, radiometer, and other systems commonly deployed by NASA. However, at the higher frequencies the performance is degraded in terms of bandwidth and loss which severely limits their usefulness.
Although there is a demonstrable need for these components, there are relatively few vendors. Most of the commercially available components were developed more than forty years ago and there has been little effort at modernization. Recent advances reported in the literature suggest that the loss in Faraday rotation isolators can be significantly reduced. Using modern electromagnetic simulation tools, we propose to design millimeter-wave and sub-millimeter-wave ferrite components that exhibit significantly reduced loss, and improved power handling and bandwidth.
Initial work on the development of a W-band isolator is underway. Ferrite cores have been manufactured and the impedance matching structures have been designed. We plan to demonstrate the effectiveness of our approach within the six month timeframe of the SBIR Phase I program. We have also successfully modeled Y-junction circulators that accurately predict performance similar to those available in the commercial market and are now working on several approaches to increase the bandwidth of these devices. A preliminary design operating at 160 GHz has been completed. In the Phase I program, the design will be refined, built and tested. Beyond Phase I, our goal is to develop a full line of ferrite components operating from 75 GHz to over 320 GHz with significantly improved performance over the current state-of-the-art.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed ferrite components would find immediate application in heterodyne receivers used in NASA's Submillimeter Missions such as Marvel, VESPER, MACO as well as earth observing satellites such as SIRICE. They are also useful in a broad range of laboratory instrumentation for the development of millimeter-wave and submillimeter-wave sources, detectors, receivers and systems. They are broadly used in scientific instruments for plasma diagnostics (ITER), chemical spectroscopy, biomaterial analysis, and radio astronomy. These components are fundamental building blocks that find application in virtually any system working at millimeter-wave, submillimeter-wave and terahertz frequencies.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
High frequency ferrite components find a broad range of application in military systems that include compact range radar, imaging systems, covert communications systems, and chemical and bio-agent detection systems. There are potential applications in biomedical systems for the real time analysis of skin diseases, portal security scanners, high frequency data links and industrial process control systems. There is an immediate need for these components in frequency extension modules for vector network analyzers operating from 75 GHz to over 500 GHz. They are fundamental building blocks used in many systems operating in millimeter-wave to terahertz frequency bands.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING (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.)
Ad-Hoc Networks (see also Sensors)
Analytical Instruments (Solid, Liquid, Gas, Plasma, Energy; see also Sensors)
Entry, Descent, & Landing (see also Astronautics)
Entry, Descent, & Landing (see also Planetary Navigation, Tracking, & Telemetry)
GPS/Radiometric (see also Sensors)
Telemetry (see also Control & Monitoring)
Terahertz (Sub-millimeter)

Form Generated on 04-23-15 15:37