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DARPA – Microsystems Exploration (μE) – Steerable Optical Aperture Receivers (SOAR) – DARPA-PA-21-05-01

Home / Funding Opportunity / DARPA – Microsystems Exploration (μE) – Steerable Optical Aperture Receivers (SOAR) – DARPA-PA-21-05-01

DARPA – Microsystems Exploration (μE) – Steerable Optical Aperture Receivers (SOAR) – DARPA-PA-21-05-01

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SOAR will identify promising new approaches to optical beam steering in miniature form factors, and experimentally demonstrate their operation in receive mode for small aperture sizes. The μE seeks to develop optical interfaces that can receive light from any direction without a priori knowledge of the incoming angle. The SOAR interface must actively steer the angle of acceptance in order to either (i) acquire and couple the input beam into a common output mode defined by the proposer, or (ii) detect the optical signal within the receiver interface.
DARPA expects that demonstrations will include a test setup that tunes the input angle as well as a control system that both sets the required steering configuration and reads out the input angle with precision equal to or better than the Table 1 angular resolution metric.
Phase 1 of SOAR will focus on receiver design and process development to determine whether the structure can be fabricated within the program. Phase 2 will proceed to receiver fabrication, with experimental metrics identified in Table 1. Phase 2 will also include a transceiver design study on aperture scalability and system integration.
Closes 13 October 2022 – up to USD$400K over 8 months for Phase 1 (feasibility study) and USD$600K over 10 months for Phase 2 (proof of concept).

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