Strategically Radiation-Hardened Star Tracker
ABSTRACT: Scientic, Inc. and Comtec AeroAstro (CAA) in partnership proposes to determine intrinsic radiation hardness of the CAA MST design in order to identify requirements needed for a strategic radiation level star tracker that will include tolerance to natural space radiation environments. We will investigate improvements in the MST design such as EEE parts replacements, innovative shielding techniques, new hardened materials and/or architecture approaches to that will improve the radiation hardness capability. The ultimate goal of this effort is the development of a strategically radiation hardened star tracker with autonomous lost-in-space recovery and high-angular-rate tracking capability Scientic, Inc. and Comtech AeroAstro (CAA) look forward to exercising the excellent linkage between this Air Force Research Laboratory SBIR and the Commercialization effort. While the current market does not yet meet AFRL"s needs for performance specified in the solicitation with commensurate cost, the CAA ruggedized miniature star tracker system will take camera design forward with the next significant generation of technological/cost strides. BENEFIT: Our proposed star tracker enables low SWAP, low cost spacecraft attitude control is a crucial element in the commercialization strategy for Space Customers. We believe that this ruggedized star tracker will become the standard for all DoD satellites, and we plan to push for incorporating the radiation-hard star tracker on every US satellite launched (government and civilian).. We project that our operational system will be available for integration onto DoD systems by 3Q 13 and commercial systems by 4Q 13. Our sales forecast is below: FY13: 4 units FY14: 8 units FY15: 15 units FY16: 20 units Volume is sustained through ~ FY20 Scientic and CAA truly believe that this system also has tremendous potential in the non-space community as well. Fundamentally, the radiation-hard star tracker is a very robust, low power, low volume vision and ranging system. Therefore, the possible terrestrial applications range from security/monitoring systems to autonomous robotic vision for mobile systems. We plan to expand the Phase I and Phase II work to address non-space qualified parts to reduce recurring costs, and expect to have good long term projections by mid-2011.
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