MEMS-based micro resonator gyro for navigation is goal of Northrop Grumman-Georgia Tech MRIG research project

WOODLAND HILLS, Calif., 19 May 2011. Navigation and guidance experts at the Northrop Grumman Corp. Electronic Systems segment in Woodland Hills, Calif., are teaming with Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) in Atlanta to develop technology using a micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) fabrication process for a micro resonator gyro able to assist with navigation for small military applications ranging from unmanned vehicles to hand-held devices.

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WOODLAND HILLS, Calif., 19 May 2011.Navigation and guidance experts at the Northrop Grumman Corp. Electronic Systems segment in Woodland Hills, Calif., are teaming with Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) in Atlanta to develop technology using a micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) fabrication process for a micro resonator gyro able to assist with navigation for small military applications ranging from unmanned vehicles to hand-held devices.The research work is part of the Microscale Rate Integrating Gyroscope (MRIG) program of the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency in Arlington, Va. to develop miniature gyroscope technology for smart munitions, ships, vehicles, aircraft, and infantry soldiers.Northrop Grumman won a $4.8 million contract in March to participate in the DARPA MRIG program to develop technology for a MEMS gyro, company officials chose Georgia Tech to partner on the program. Also working on the DARPA MRIG program is the Honeywell Aerospace Microelectronics & Precision Sensors segment in Plymouth, Minn., under terms of a $5.9 million contract awarded in mid-March.

Researchers from Northrop Grumman and Georgia Tech plan to develop a proof-of-concept MEMS gyro during the first year of the DARPA MRIG program that can function as accurately as existing silicon-based MEMS devices but in smaller, more lightweight packages that use less power than silicon MEMS, Northrop Grumman officials say.

The three-year DARPA MRIG project aims to build miniature navigation-grade gyros for personal navigation, unmanned vehicle navigation, GPS denied/challenged locations, and other precision-navigation applications that demand tiny electronics that uses very little electric power.

For more information contact Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems online at www.es.northropgrumman.com, or Georgia Tech at www.gatech.edu.

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