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KVH to Continue Fiber Research

Photonics.com
Sep 2004
MIDDLETOWN, R.I., Sept. 24 -- KVH Industries Inc., a manufacturer of navigation and guidance systems using mobile satellite antenna and fiber optic technologies, has been awarded engineering contracts totalling more than $1 million from three US defense customers. The largest is a Phase II Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) grant for $730,000 to fund continued research into KVH's ActiveFiber technology. The company also received two follow-on contracts for enhancements to its existing TACNAV M100 GMENS military vehicle navigation system and its fiber optic gyro (FOG)-based inertial measurement unit technology. Revenue from these contracts will be recognized during the fourth quarter of 2004 and throughout 2005.

"This new engineering funding will enable KVH to expand and refine the capabilities of our proven navigation and guidance solutions as well as pursue new technologies that could support future product development efforts," said Dan Conway, KVH's vice president of business development.

KVH's proposed ActiveFiber technology uses the company's patented D-shaped fiber and electro-optic polymers to create components inside the fiber itself, making the fiber an active element within an optical system. In 2003, the company demonstrated in a laboratory what it said was the world's first in-fiber optical modulator. KVH said the modulator could potentially be used as a component in fiber optic gyros that are subjected to shock and vibration, such as in artillery shells.

KVH TACNAV navigation systems have been used most recently in US military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. TACNAV complements global positioning systems (GPS) but operates independently of them, via KVH's digital compass and fiber optic gyro (FOG) technology and software algorithms; it provides navigation, position and heading data to a digital battlefield system even if GPS is blocked, jammed or unavailable. TACNAV systems have been sold for use aboard US Army, Marine Corps and Navy vehicles and to Canada, Sweden, Britain, Germany, Spain, Australia, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Malaysia and Italy. KVH FOGs are used in applications including inertial measurement units for torpedoes, precision tactical navigation systems for military vehicles and image stabilization and synchronization for shoulder- or tripod-mounted weapon simulators.

For more information, visit: www.kvh.com



GLOSSARY
optical system
A group of lenses, or any combination of lenses, mirrors and prisms,  so constructed as to refract or reflect light to perform some definite optical function. 
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