- Raytheon Awarded Funding Under 2 DARPA Projects
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Dec. 28, 2010 — Raytheon BBN Technologies, a Raytheon Co. subsidiary, announced it received $2.1 million in funding from DARPA for two projects under the Information in a Photon (InPho) program.
The InPho project aims to develop new theory and experimental techniques that enable optical communications and imaging systems to operate at their ultimate limits of information encoding efficiency as permitted by the laws of quantum physics.
Raytheon’s first project, PIECOMM (Photon Information Efficient Communications), aims to create techniques that increase the current limits of optical communications technology, while approaching the ultimate limits of photon information efficiency. It will significantly increase power management, speed and reach on free space optical communication links, including far-field links used in deep space.
“Today, optical communications are far from ultimate performance and reaching the furthest limits of light’s information carrying capacity,” said Saikat Guha, a scientist at Raytheon BBN Technologies. “We are developing techniques that greatly improve the performance of current optical communications and approach the quantum limits of light’s information carrying capacity.”
The company will generate a multiple-spatial-mode design and adaptive joint-detection receivers that attain communications at 10-bits per photon and 5-bits/s/Hz while simultaneously encoding information in space and time. The work will be done in collaboration with researchers in optical communications, quantum optics and information theory at MIT.
Its FINESSE (Fundamental Information Capacity of Electromagnetism with Squeezing and Spatial Entanglement) project aims to determine the theoretical performance limits for imaging technology as determined by the laws of quantum physics. Collaborating with the University of Virginia, it will conduct a theoretical and experimental program of study to investigate newly engineered quantum states of light to perform imaging with performance superior to conventional techniques. The goal of the program is to crate a new technology for imaging in the near and the far field.
“Conventional imaging techniques use classical light pulses from lasers and detect the resulting reflection from a target or scene,” said Jonathan Habif, senior scientist at Raytheon BBN Technologies. “We have set out to define new quantum states of light and subsequent detection methods from which we can obtain far more image information from a lot less light.”
The company plans to develop new sources of quantum-entangled light and state-of-the-art optical sensor technologies to demonstrate improvement in the information efficiency of light used for imaging.
Raytheon delivers state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration and other capabilities for sensing; effects; and command, control, communications and intelligence systems.
For more information, visit: www.bbn.com
- For a Fabry-Perot interferometer or etalon, a value for the transmission bandwidth which can be calculated as the ratio of the free spectral range to the full width half maximum of the transmission peaks. For an etalon, a high finesse is dependent on high reflectivity. Defects in the reflective surface will result in a lower finesse.
- Electromagnetic radiation detectable by the eye, ranging in wavelength from about 400 to 750 nm. In photonic applications light can be considered to cover the nonvisible portion of the spectrum which includes the ultraviolet and the infrared.
- optical communications
- The transmission and reception of information by optical devices and sensors.
- quantum optics
- The area of optics in which quantum theory is used to describe light in discrete units or ‘quanta’ of energy known as photons. First observed by Albert Einstein’s photoelectric effect, this particle description of light is the foundation for describing the transfer of energy (i.e. absorption and emission) in light matter interaction.
- 1. A generic term for detector. 2. A complete optical/mechanical/electronic system that contains some form of radiation detector.
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