Q-Peak's Ultrafast infrarerd Laser System
Q-Peak, Inc. has been awarded a contract for the Department of Energy to to develop a low-SWaP laser integrated into a compact laser altimeter that can achieve the desired ranging accuracy and precision with minimum resource from spacecraft bus.
Missions to Solar System bodies must meet increasingly ambitious objectives requiring highly reliable capabilities in soft landing, precision landing, and hazard avoidance. Precision range data significantly improves spacecraft control in close-approach and landing scenarios. Range data is particularly most critical in the final descent phase where the spacecraft is within a few kilometers of the target surface. These missions require improved precision from previously flown lidar technologies as well as significant reductions in size, weight, and power (SWaP), given the resource-constrained class of missions likely to utilize this capability.
Q-Peak, in partnership with John Hopkins University, Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), are developing an ultra compact laser source that can be used at 1 or 1.5u eyesafe wavelength for LIDAR applications to map and image objects; a narrow laser-beam can map physical features with very high resolution. It can target a wide range of materials, including non-metallic objects, rocks, rain, chemical compounds, aerosols, clouds, and even single molecules. This laser will be able to be used in the Automotive Safety and Navigation, Geography, Law Enforcement, Meteorology, Mining, Robotics and Wind Farms markets.
Q-Peak’s advantage over military lasers is an extremely small, compact, simple and rugged technology for generation of single mode laser pulse either in green or in the near-IR eyesafe region. This laser device will be much better suited for fieldable systems than present products both on SWaP, mode profile. Present Department of Defense procurement of eyesafe laser rangefinder sources in this performance range exceeds 2,500 units per annum with a constant need to advance the state of the art and reduce soldier carry-weight and workload. Q-Peak’s laser architecture will have great promise in fulfilling an Urgent Needs Requirement for all branches of the DOD interested in precision targeting.
For more information, contact:
Vice President, Systems
135 South Road
Bedford, MA 01730