NP Photonics Wins Star Wars Funds

NP Photonics wins a Phase II Small Business Innovation Research contract, worth $750,000 over two years, by the Missile Defense Agency

February 25, 2003

2 Min Read

TUCSON, Ariz. -- NP Photonics, a leading supplier of optical components and modules for the sensing and telecommunications markets, has been awarded a Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) contract by the Missile Defense Agency (MDA). Worth $750,000 over the next two years, the MDA SBIR contract will support further development of NP Photonics' multimode-pumped, monolithic gain array. This compact device has the potential to provide low-cost amplification throughout a variety of optical communication and fiberoptic sensing networks. "The SBIR program is quite competitive, so it's an honor for us to have been awarded this Phase II contract," said Chuck Chandler, CEO of NP Photonics. "This is a result of a lot of hard work by our development team. They've created a unique gain array that combines the high performance features of standard erbium-doped fiber amplifiers with the compact size and ease of integration of semiconductor-based amplifiers." In Phase I of the MDA SBIR Program, NP Photonics developed a low cost fiber drawing method using erbium-doped phosphate glass to produce the gain array. The company then successfully built and tested the multimode-pumped, monolithic gain array. The 3-cm-long gain array chip, powered by one multimode pump diode, delivers greater than 15 dB of peak optical gain at each of three ports with a low optical noise figure (<6.0 dB). In Phase II, NP Photonics will continue investigating its concept and will develop a verified prototype. Designed to stimulate technological innovation in the small business sector, the Federal SBIR Program typically consists of three phases. During Phase I, companies must demonstrate the scientific, technical and commercial merit of a novel idea. In Phase II, companies pursue further research and the development of a well-defined prototype. In the final phase of the program, the company develops the demonstrated prototype into a viable product for sale in the military and/or private sector. NP Photonics Inc.

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