Princeton Lightwave contributes technology to 3D imaging laser radar system

By Courtney E. Howard

CRANBURY, N.J. - Engineers at Princeton Lightwave Inc. (PLI), a manufacturer of optical semiconductor components and subsystems in Cranbury, N.J., are developing focal plane arrays (FPAs) for use in three-dimensional (3D) imaging flash laser radar (ladar) systems for military applications.

According to a two-year $3.5 million contract, company engineers are producing FPA modules with indium phosphide (InP)-based Geiger-mode avalanche photodiodes (GmAPDs). These single-photon-sensitive modules serve as the optical engines at the 3D imaging flash ladar systems’ core. 3D imaging ladar systems are central to current defense projects, such as the Jigsaw program sponsored by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in Arlington, Va.

The 3D imaging FPA takes advantage of an InP GmAPD photodiode array (PDA), capable of detecting single photons at 1.06 microns. This PDA employs PLI’s GmAPD device technology, which takes into account such single-photon detection parameters as dark count rate, photon detection efficiency, and timing jitter. The PDA requires a specialized readout integrated circuit (ROIC) designed for the 3D imaging application.


PLI focal plane arrays contribute to 3D imaging flash ladar systems destined for programs such as DARPA’s Jigsaw. (Image courtesy DARPA, MIT Lincoln Laboratory.)
Click here to enlarge image

The ROIC senses the GmAPD output current pulse on a per-pixel basis, assigning a time stamp indicating the time of flight between the launching of a short-duration ranging laser pulse and the photon-detection event. That per-pixel, time-of-flight information is translated into conventional ladar measurements, and the third spatial dimension is added to complement the two-dimensional image provided by pixel location in the detector array. PLI technology hybridizes the GmAPD PDAs and ROICs using flip-chip bonding, whereas an array of microlenses mated to the back-illuminated PDA chip achieve a high optical fill factor. All these processes combine to deliver military personnel valuable 3D image data, even in situations involving large source attenuation, says a PLI representative.

“By the time we complete this two-year development program, we expect to see product-scale demand for these sensors to provide 3D imaging capability in a variety of defense systems,” says Mark Itzler, PLI’s CTO and principal investigator for the program.

The GmAPD FPA technology has been demonstrated by MIT Lincoln Laboratory under DARPA sponsorship of the Jigsaw program. MIT Lincoln Laboratory is a federally funded research-and-development center managed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, primarily funded by the U.S. Department of Defense, and located at Hanscom Air Force Base in Lexington, Mass. The Jigsaw program first demonstrated the feasibility of using GmAPD FPA technology to create 3D images of objects that are camouflaged and obscured by forest canopy and netting, for example.

For more information, visit www.princetonlightwave.com.


Get All the Military Aerospace Electronics News Delivered to Your Inbox or Your Mailbox

Subscribe to Military Aerospace Electronics Magazine or email newsletter today at no cost and receive the latest information on:


  • C4ISR
  • Cyber Security
  • Embedded Computing
  • Unmanned Vehicles


Get All the Military Aerospace Electronics News Delivered to Your Inbox or Your Mailbox

Subscribe to Military Aerospace Electronics Magazine or email newsletter today at no cost and receive the latest information on:


  • C4ISR
  • Cyber Security
  • Embedded Computing
  • Unmanned Vehicles

Military & Aerospace Photos

Most Popular Articles

Related Products

XCalibur1645 | Freescale Eight-Core P4080 Processor-Based Conduction-Cooled 6U VPX Module

The XCalibur1645 is a high-performance, 6U VPX, single board computer supporting Freescale QorIQ ...

XPedite7574 | 5th Generation Intel® Core™ i7 Broadwell-H Processor-Based Conduction- or Air-Cooled 3U VPX-REDI Module

The XPedite7574 is a high-performance, 3U VPX-REDI, single board computer based on the 5th genera...

XCalibur5090 | Dual Virtex-7 Based Digital Signal Processing 6U LRM FPGA with Quad 2500 MSPS DAC and 3200 MSPS ADC

The XCalibur5090 is a high-performance, reconfigurable, conduction-cooled 6U LRM module based on ...

ScanFaker DRSii - Networked Radar Simulator

High resolution radar stimulator supporting analog and LAN output. Resolution down to 1m is possi...

Body Worn Antennas

Body Worn Antennas from SWA are ideal for covert surveillance applications where the radio and an...

4G LTE Cellular Omni Concealment Antenna

The 4G LTE Cellular Omni Concealment Antenna from Southwest Antennas measures only 4.70" x 1.70" ...

Ultra-Flex Omni Antennas

The Southwest Antennas Ultra-Flex is a line of S-Band & C-Band omni antennas with a unique enviro...

S & C Dual-Band Omni Antennas

SWA Dual-Band Omni Antennas are designed to cover the S & C bands, and are available with multipl...

FLATRACK™ Ethernet I/O DAQ Platform

FLATRACK™ Ethernet I/O DAQ Platform accommodates installation of up to four I/O boards, completes...

PowerDNA-PPC5 Cube

5-layer, 100Base-T I/O, Data Acquisition and Control Cube with PowerPC CPU and SD slot. Has slots...

Related Companies

TEN TECH LLC

Is a mechanical engineering consulting company headquartered in Los Angeles, CA with operations in Billerica, MA, pro...

Dspnor AS

Offers radar signal processing and distribution. The products interface to virtually any radar system in use today. T...

Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions

About Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions (CWDS) is a long established techno...

PALMARII Dynamics AB

PALMARII Dynamics is a Swedish company incorporated in 2012 as a competence centre for specialist naval architecture ...

PELORUS NAVAL SYSTEMS Inc

Pelorus Naval Systems is a specialist naval defense engineering and support services company with headquarters in Ran...

Southwest Antennas

Southwest Antennas designs and manufactures high-performance RF & Microwave antennas and accessories designed for tod...

CORWIL Technology Corp

CORWIL Technology, the premier US based, IC assembly and test services subcontractor, offering full back-end assembly...

IndustryARC

IndustryARC primarily focuses on Cutting Edge Technologies and Newer Applications of the Market. Our Custom Research ...

United Electronic Industries Inc

UEI is a leader in the PC/Ethernet data acquisition and control, Data Logger/Recorder and Programmable Automation Con...

RPMC Lasers Inc

Offers 1500 DPSS lasers, lamp lasers, fiber lasers and diode lasers. Provides, ultrafast, picosecond, nanosecond, cw ...

Webcasts

Harsh Environment Protection for Advanced Electronics and Components

This webinar will offer an opportunity to learn more about ultra-thin Parylene conformal coatings – how they are applied, applications they protect today, and the properties and benefits they offer, includin...

New Design Tools That Help You Develop Radar That Sees the Un-seeable and Detects the Undetectable

Xilinx EW/ISR System Architect, Luke Miller, has new tricks and he’s going to tell you all about them in a new Xilinx Webinar—for free. His Webinar will cover new ways to implement Radar functions including ...
Sponsored by:

Press Releases

CURTISS-WRIGHT AWARDED CONTRACT BY SIERRA NEVADA CORPORATION

Curtiss-Wright Corporation today announced that its Defense Solutions division has received a contract from Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) to supply its small form factor ...

Innovative Integration Announces the FMC-Servo

Camarillo, CA June 19, 2015, Innovative Integration, a trusted supplier of signal processing and data acquisition hardware and software solutions, today announced the FMC-S...

METADATA SUPPORT ENHANCES INDUSTRY-LEADING HD VIDEO MANAGEMENT SYSTEM FROM CURTISS-WRIGHT

Curtiss-Wright Corporation today announced that its Defense Solutions division has further enhanced its innovative VRD1 high definition (HD) video management system (VMS) w...

All Access Sponsors


Mil & Aero Magazine

August 2015
Volume 26, Issue 8
file

Download Our Apps



iPhone

iPad

Android

Follow Us On...



Newsletters

Military & Aerospace Electronics

Weekly newsletter covering technical content, breaking news and product information
SUBSCRIBE

Cyber Security

Monthly newsletter covering cyber warfare, cyber security, information warfare, and information security technologies, products, contracts, and procurement opportunities
SUBSCRIBE

Defense Executive

Monthly newsletter covering business news and strategic insights for executive managers
SUBSCRIBE

Electronic Warfare

Quarterly newsletter covering technologies and applications in electronic warfare, cyber warfare, optical warfare, and spectrum warfare.
SUBSCRIBE

Embedded Computing Report

Monthly newsletter covering news on embedded computing in aerospace, defense and industrial-rugged applications
SUBSCRIBE

Unmanned Vehicles

Monthly newsletter covering news updates for designers of unmanned vehicles
SUBSCRIBE