Business

October 16, 2012

Boeing, AFRL sodium guide star laser enhancing space situational awareness mission

A new, 50-watt sodium laser built by Boeing and the Air Force Research Laboratory began operating recently on a 3.5-meter telescope at Kirtland Air Force Base’s Starfire Optical Range, helping scientists and researchers to capture more accurate and detailed images of objects in Earth orbit.

A sodium guide star laser built by Boeing and the Air Force Research Laboratory began operating recently on a telescope at Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., greatly increasing the ability of AFRL scientists to acquire detailed images of objects in Earth orbit.

The 50-watt laser, installed on a 3.5-meter telescope at Kirtland’s Starfire Optical Range, illuminates sodium atoms in the atmosphere with an intense laser beam. The laser creates an artificial guide star, which is used to measure the blurring effect caused by turbulence in the Earth’s atmosphere; an adaptive optics system uses this measurement to correct the blurring effect. The guide star laser will increase the detail of the images captured from this telescope.

“The addition of this sodium guide star laser, along with improvements to the AO system sensitivity, will make it possible for us to reliably obtain satellite images with more accurate and precise details than ever before,” said AFRL Principal Investigator Dennis Montera. “This is a critically important step in increasing our capabilities in space situational awareness.”

Boeing has supported the telescopes at Starfire Optical Range for more than 30 years. Under the AFRL’s Innovative Research and Optical Support Services contract, Boeing is responsible for improving the site’s capability in atmospheric compensation, laser communications, and other technical areas.

“This new guide star laser is an evolutionary step in the maturing of adaptive optics technology. It is much more reliable than the device that has been in use for the past eight years. This improved laser will enable the future development of adaptive optics technology,” said David DeYoung, director of Laser Technical Services for Boeing Directed Energy Systems. “The team’s achievement of ‘first light’ is a testament to our close working relationship with the Air Force and our commitment to support current and future missions.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Pratt & Whitney, U.S. Air Force complete qualification for F135 engine testing

Pratt & Whitney, a United Technologies Corp. , together with its U.S. Air Force partner at the F135 Heavy Maintenance Center at Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., celebrated another significant milestone qualification for F135 engine testing at the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex. OC-ALC which in addition to engine testing is also qualified to perform...
 
 

Raytheon begins building critical components for AN/TPY-2 ballistic missile defense radar

The Missile Defense Agency will soon have greater agility and capability in its fleet of AN/TPY-2 ballistic missile defense radars. Raytheon has begun construction of two major sub-components of the AN/TPY-2 under a $53 million contract announced by the Department of Defense on Sept 2. The units Raytheon is building will enable the MDA to...
 
 

Honeywell, Thales to offer next-gen high-speed in-flight connectivity to A350XWB

Honeywell Aerospace and Thales will work together to integrate Honeywell JetWave hardware with Thales cabin network solutions for Airbus A350XWB and other commercial aircraft. The combined offering will give commercial airline operators and their passengers the same connectivity experience in-flight as they would have at home or work ó enabling real-time TV channel viewing, live...
 

 

U.S. Navy awards General Dynamics $16 million for F/A-18 mission computers

General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems, a business unit of General Dynamics, has been awarded a $16.2 million contract by the U.S. Navy to produce Type-3 Advanced Mission Computers for the F/A-18 E/A-18G Super Hornet aircraft. Since 2002 General Dynamics has produced, tested and delivered the F/A-18 AMC, which serves as the nerve center of the...
 
 

Boeing, DLA partnership will improve war fighter logistics support

Boeing has received a $293 million performance-based contract from the Defense Logistics Agency to provide aircraft parts and support that will enable DLA to provide essential logistics support to warfighters more quickly and effectively. Boeing proposed a holistic partnership and transformational approach that fundamentally changes the way DLA and Boeing do business,î said Julie Praiss,...
 
 
NG-people

Northrop Grumman appoints vice president

Northrop Grumman has announced the appointment of Tarik Reyes as vice president, business development for its integrated air and missile defense division in its Information Systems sector, effective immediately. In this new rol...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>