NASA SBIR 2016 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 16-2 S1.01-7662
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Lidar Remote Sensing Technologies
PROPOSAL TITLE: High Power, Thermally Optimized Blue Laser for Lidar

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Bridger Photonics, Inc.
2310 University Way, Building, 4-4
Bozeman, MT 59715 - 6504
(406) 585-2774

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Jason Brasseur
2310 University Way, Building, 4-4
Bozeman, MT 59715 - 6504
(406) 585-2774 Extension :106

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Lisa Bleile
2310 University Way, Building, 4-4
Bozeman, MT 59715 - 6504
(406) 585-2774 Extension :111

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 3
End: 4

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Lidar Remote Sensing Technologies 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)
To enable widespread and rapid airborne bathymetric lidar to adequate depths in many ocean regions a low-cost, rugged, and high energy pulsed laser source must be developed in the ocean water transmittance spectrum of 450 - 490 nm. The ideal laser source will be high performance for lidar (high pulse energy, high rep rate, short pulse duration) with specific targeted emission spectrum to meet ocean water transmittance and filtering requirements. It will also feature low SWaP and a rugged form factor with high reliability for continual use on mobile platforms. No existing laser source can meet these demanding requirements.

To address this challenge and meet NASA's lidar source needs, Bridger Photonics, Inc. (Bridger) proposes creating a high power Q-switched, off-line Nd:YAG source at 946 nm, which, when frequency doubled to 473 nm, will provide high transmittance through ocean waters. Bridger's design will leverage three key innovations proven out in its Phase I effort: efficient, end-pumped, low-quantum-defect architecture; gain crystal design for optimal heat removal; and robust monolithic, alignment-free fabrication. The proposed design would allow for widespread deployment of mobile ocean-penetrating lidar transmitters. Successful completion of this Phase II effort will allow Bridger to demonstrate >10 W of average blue power in a compact, turn-key package. Bridger has modeled and constructed similar lasers through SBIR efforts previously and will apply the innovations developed there towards this new system for NASA.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
NASA's primary application for the proposed transmitter would be ocean bathymetry and underwater object detection. The compact size, rugged design, and efficient electrical-to-optical conversion of Bridger's proposed laser would make it ideally suited for a mobile ship, airborne, or even satellite platform. Due to larger scattering at shorter wavelengths, the 473 nm source would be favored over the traditional 532 nm source for most cloud and aerosol lidar applications. The 473 nm beam would also work well as a general purpose OPO pump beam especially for generating green to near-IR signal waves or into the SWIR spectral band. The former is an intermediate step towards generating the UV wavelengths used for measuring tropospheric ozone via differential absorption lidar, while the latter is useful for profiling other important greenhouse gases and pollutants such as CH4, CO2, H2O, CO, NO2, and many others. Finally the 946 nm fundamental source would be useful for water vapor lidar.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed laser would be the most compact, high-power, solid-state blue laser source currently available. The primary market for this laser will be as an ideal lidar source for both bathymetric and aerosol lidar. Within the lidar market there are many organizations that would be potential customers for an ocean penetrating blue lidar transmitter for bathymetry and underwater object detection: the Navy, NOAA, the EPA, the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency, and the Coast Guard for instance. The delivered lidar system would provide the Navy with the capability to conduct rapid and widespread object detection beneath the ocean surface from an airborne platform. Bridger envisions a wide variety of applications for this laser including gas sensing lidar, hard-target ranging, ablation applications including mass spectrometry, nonlinear spectroscopy and as general purpose OPO pump. The proposed transmitter could easily be adapted to detect a host of gasses, most of which are detected in the short wave infrared and mid-infrared spectral regions and are well suited to a seeded OPO pumped either with the 946 or 473 nm beam.

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.)
Lasers (Ladar/Lidar)

Form Generated on 03-07-17 15:43