Defense

August 20, 2014

Air Force, Creare develop technology

CREARE engineers test the 10 K cryocooler in a thermal vacuum chamber. The Air Force and the New Hampshire-based business developed a two-stage turbo-Brayton cryocooler that is expected to enhance operation of space-based infrared detectors.

The Air Force and Creare, a small, New Hampshire-based business, developed a two-stage turbo-Brayton cryocooler that is expected to enhance operation of space-based infrared detectors.

The resulting technology responds to Air Force requirements for improvements in performance of electro-optical space payloads by improving components of the cryocooling system.

Managed by personnel at the Air Force Research Laboratory, the multi-phase Small Business Innovation Research program resulted in turbo-machine-based Brayton cryocoolers, which are ideal candidates for space-based infrared detectors because they are highly efficient, lightweight, vibration-free, multi-stage compatible and have long maintenance-free lifetimes.

“Providing extremely low temperature refrigeration is a requirement of certain infrared detectors,” said Thomas Fraser, the Air Force program manager. “The method developed during this program is a very efficient method of refrigeration using miniature turbines spinning at thousands of revolutions per second.

“This technology offers a long lifetime through use of advanced, non-contact bearing technology and we expect it to support long, 10 or more year orbit lifespans,” Fraser added. “It can also provide cooling at a distance from the compressor and does not impart vibration to the focal plane array, which are limiting factors in other cryocooler products and types.”

During the course of the program, Creare developed the state-of-the-art components needed to create turbo-Brayton cryocoolers and integrated the components to form a two-stage cryocooler that provides refrigeration in the 10 to 20 Kelvin temperature range (10 to 20K is equivalent to -423 to -442 Fahrenheit). During the first phase of the program, Creare obtained key operational and performance data for the cold stage turboalternator. During the second phase of the project, they assembled a brassboard cryocooler, measured its performance at cold-load temperatures (around 10 K), and used the results in development of a preliminary design for a fully-optimized cryocooler.

In the past, Creare has successfully commercialized technology resulting from their SBIR efforts. They commercialize the technology internally via sales of custom or specialized hardware and software and engineering services contracts, as well as externally through creation of spin-off organization and licensing of technology to third parties. To date, Creare and its spinoffs trace $735 million in revenues as a result of SBIR projects.

The Air Force’s SBIR program was established by Congress in 1982 to fund research and development through small businesses of 500 or fewer employees. It focuses on projects with the potential to develop into a product for defense or commercial markets. Congress also established the Small Business Technology Transfer Program in 1992. It is similar in structure to SBIR and funds cooperative research and development projects with small businesses in partnership with not-for profit research institutions (such as universities) to move research to the marketplace. For more information about these programs, including commercialization readiness assistance for existing contracts, please call the Air Force SBIR/STTR Program Office at 1-800-222-0336, email info@afsbirsttr.com, or visit our website at www.afsbirsttr.com.




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


 
 

 

Headlines December 19, 2014

News: SpaceX’s attempt to land rocket on floating barge postponed - It’s set to be one of the most groundbreaking moments in humanity’s six decades of space exploration. Obama signs $1.1 trillion spending bill into law - President Obama signed the $1.1 trillion federal spending measure into law Dec. 16, officially ending any threat of a government...
 
 

News Briefs December 19, 2014

Trial set for ex-Navy engineer in military secrets case A former Navy civilian engineer is scheduled to stand trial next summer on charges of trying to steal aircraft carrier schematics. Media outlets report that 35-year-old Mostafa Awwad of Yorktown, Va., pleaded not guilty Dec. 17 to two counts of attempted exportation of defense articles and...
 
 
Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez

Army to launch cruise missile-detecting aerostat at Aberdeen Proving Ground

Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez The Army plans to launch an aerostat, part of the “Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor,” in late December 2014. The JLENS aerostat will be tethered to the...
 

 
Air Force photograph by SrA. Jordan Castelan

AF delivers Iraqi F-16s for training in US

Air Force photograph by SrA. Jordan Castelan Iraqi air force captain Hama conducts preflight inspections while inside a new to service Iraqi F-16 Fighting Falcon Dec. 17, 2014, located at the nearby Tucson International Airport...
 
 
Air Force photograph by SSgt. Derek VanHorn

Short-notice: A new way to exercise

Air Force photograph by SSgt. Derek VanHorn Airmen from Kadena Air Base, Japan, prepare for an aeromedical evacuation exercise on a KC-135 Stratotanker Dec. 5, 2014, at Misawa Air Base, Japan. The operation was executed in supp...
 
 
Lockheed Martin photograph by Andy Wolfe

Japan, Australia to provide F-35 maintenance sites in Pacific region

Lockheed Martin photograph by Andy Wolfe An F-35C Lightning II joint strike fighter carrier variant prepares to launch from the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz in the Pacific Ocean, Nov. 6, 2014. Japan and Australia will be sharing...
 




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>