NASA SBIR 2018-I Solicitation

Proposal Summary

 18-1- S2.01-8142
 Proximity Glare Suppression for Astronomical Direct Detection
 Primary Tweeters: Segmented Micro-Mirrors for Picometer-Scale Wavefront Compensation in Space-Based Observatories
SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Boston Micromachines Corporation
30 Spinelli Place
Cambridge , MA 02138-1070
(617) 868-4178

Principal Investigator (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Steven Cornelissen
30 Spinelli Place Cambridge, MA 02138 - 1070
(617) 868-4178

Business Official (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Tracy Raymond
30 Spinelli Place Cambridge, MA 02138 - 1070
(617) 868-4178
Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) :
Begin: 3
End: 3
Technical Abstract

The proposed innovation is a segmented, micromachined deformable mirror (DM) that can compensate tip-tilt-piston (TTP) positioning and stability errors of a segmented space-based primary mirror. This effort responds directly to the NASA FY2018 SBIR/STTR General Solicitation, Focus Area 10: Advanced Telescope Technologies, Subtopic S2.01: Proximity Glare Suppression for Astronomical Direct Detection. This subtopic focuses on new technological developments that are needed for exoplanet direct imaging, and specifically identifies wavefront measurement and control technologies as a key need. The core subject of this proposal is to develop a technology that is identified as critical in this subtopic: small-stroke, high-precision deformable mirrors and associated driving electronics. The solicitation specifically calls for a “Deformable, calibrated, collimating source to simulate the telescope front end of a coronagraph undergoing thermal deformations.” The proposed DM would have complementary uses for both simulating the front end of a coronagraph (as a surrogate for its primary) and precisely compensating wavefront errors in the front end of an actual coronagraph. High-precision deformable mirrors have applications relative to multiple NASA needs. Commercialization opportunities in astronomy and space science include both space telescopes such as the Large UV/Optical/Infrared Surveyor (LUVOIR) and Habitable Exoplanet Imaging Mission (HabEx) telescopes.  The DM architectures to be developed in this project also have commercial applications in non-government markets, including space surveillance and biological microscopy. In the microscopy market especially, the TTP DM has become a commercial product used in two photon nonlinear microscopes through the pioneering efforts of Na Ji at Howard Hughes Medical Insitute’s Janelia Research Campus.

Potential NASA Applications

High-actuator-count deformable mirrors (DMs) have a few NASA applications. The following applications apply to all BMC DMs that benefit from processes developed for this program.

Astronomy: For space telescopes, a number of missions require the control provided by the proposed DMs such as LUVOIR and HabEx. For ground-based telescopes, BMC has successfully developed arrays up to 4096 elements for GPI and other high contrast imaging testbeds and can achieve similar results for other new ELTs.

Potential Non-NASA Applications

The deformable mirrors (DMs) developed in this project have a few commercial applications and apply to all BMC DMs benefitting from processes developed for this program.

Space surveillance and optical comms would benefit from this new architecture for long-range imaging and secure communication. Microscopy Users would benefit in modalities such as multi-photon, 4Pi and localization microscopy. Finally, DM arrays will enable new techniques for laser marking, material ablation and characterization.

Form Generated on 05/25/2018 11:44:48