The successful development of dual-band 640 x 480 and 720 x 1280 mercury cadmium telluride focal plane arrays (FPA) under the DBFM (Dual-Band Flexible Manufacturing) program at the end of 2006, is giving rise to a flurry of activity to demonstrate complete 3rd Gen systems and take full advantage of this powerful technology.
The size of infrared focal plane arrays (FPA) is poised for a large increase. Currently, both InSb and MWIR MCT arrays have been fabricated in a 2K x 2K monolithic configuration, with the InSb FPA used in the SHARP reconnaissance pod and the MCT FPA used in the NIRCam instrument on the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST).
Amorphous silicon (a-Si) uncooled microbolometers made by ULIS are increasingly reaching performance levels previously attained only by VOx microbolometers.
Researchers at Ritsumeikan University have developed a very low-cost thermal array that is more than a spot thermal sensor, but not quite a staring focal plane array. The device, dubbed Infrared Position Sensitive Detector (IRPSD), is an array of uncooled thermopiles, which is not intended to form an image, but provide position information on the object being viewed.
DRS Sensors & Targeting Systems is seeking to unseat IAI-Tamam as the supplier of the EO/IR system on the U.S. Army’s Shadow 200 Tactical UAV (RQ-7B). The Army wants an upgrade of the Shadow EO/IR system which includes a laser designator.
Textron Crop. is acquiring UIC Corp., the parent of AAI Corp., for $1.1 billion in a cash tender offer. AAI Corp. makes the Shadow 200, 300 and 400 UAVs; and is teamed with Honeywell on the micro-air-vehicle (MAV), which uses a ducted fan propulsion system to enable vertical take-off and landing.
BAE Systems Infrared Imaging Systems has been awarded a five-year IDIQ contract for up to 6,500 uncooled TIM1500 modules for use in the CROWS II (Common Remotely Operated Weapon Station) made by Kongsberg Defence and Aerospace AS.
DRS has been selected for Phase II of the Advanced Soldier Mobility Sensor (ASMS) program - to develop a low power sensor with digitally fused uncooled LWIR and Image Intensified (I2) images for use in a helmet mounted vision sensor for mobility, target detection, and situational awareness in complex terrain.