NASA 1996 SBIR Phase I


PROPOSAL NUMBER : 96-1 13.07-9558B

PROJECT TITLE : Micro-Pulse Lidar for 940nm Water Vapor Sensing

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)

We propose to develop a fieldable micro-pulse lidar for sensing water vapor at ~ 940 nm using a "tandem" periodically poled LiNbO3 (PPLN) optical parametric wavelength converter. The micro-pulse lidar concept, deveolped by Spinhirne, operates at high repetition rates (5-10 kHz), low pulse energies (~10-100 microJoules); and promises to provide reduced transmitter cost, and size. The new nonlinear material, PPLN, enables the use of optical parametric wavelength converters at these high repetition rates and low pulse energies for the first time, and provides an efficient and widely tunable source of optical power. In this phase I program the feasibility of a double frequency step "tandem" PPLN converter will be tested for efficiency and proper wavelength generation. Narrow banding and spectral purity demonstrations will be carried out in the Phase II program designed to deliver a micro-pulse lidar source for testing at NASA.
POTENTIAL COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS
The micro-pulse lidar sources developed here are ideal for both government and commercial applications. For the government, countermeasures and active range mapped imaging are commercial business areas in addition to water vapor and other gas species sensing . In the private sector, the source will be useful for spectroscopy in the scientific market, and for ENT or ophthalmic surgery procedures.
NAME AND ADDRESS OF PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR
Dr. Charles Hamilton
Aculight Corporation
40 Lake Bellevue, Suite 100
Bellevue, WA 98005
NAME AND ADDRESS OF OFFEROR
Aculight Corporation
40 Lake Bellevue, Suite 100
Bellevue, WA 98005