Fiberstars Inc., a Fremont, Calif., maker of fiber optic lighting systems, was awarded two Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) phase I grants, totaling $200,000 over nine months, from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to demonstrate feasibility of a more durable, robust distributed lighting system intended to replace fluorescent lights typically used on Navy ships. One grant is for the development of arc source multilayer coatings that would double the lifetime of remote source lighting installed on Navy ships without affecting their performance; it will allow Fiberstar to investigate novel exterior lamp coatings and coating designs that would prevent problems such as unequal thermal heating and lamp surface contaminations. The other grant builds on Fiberstar's recent development of a continuously extruded large-core fiber processing method to enable it to investigate materials and processing techniques for use in the most dangerous and mission-critical areas of the ships. . . . Given Imaging Ltd., Micron Technology and Zarlink Semiconductor said they are developing a third-generation PillCam SB video capsule, a pill-sized camera that captures internal images as it travels through a patient's digestive system. Micron's metal-oxide CMOS image sensors and Zarlink's ultralow-power radio frequency transmitter chips are used in Given Imaging's PillCam SB, designed for small-bowel imaging, and PillCam ESO, for the esophagus, and will be used in PillCam COLON, which is undergoing clinical trials. The new PillCam SB will have a faster frame rate (four from two frames per second) and increased (eight to nine hours) operating capacity; it is expected to be commercially available next year.
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