Electro-optical Seeker Based on HgCdTe Photodetection
Award last edited on: 8/22/22

Sponsored Program
Awarding Agency
Total Award Amount
Award Phase
Solicitation Topic Code
Principal Investigator
Brendan Benapfl

Company Information

Episensors Inc (AKA: EPIR Inc~EPIR Ltd~EPIR Technologies Inc~Sivananthan Laboratories, Inc.~Siva Labs)

590 Territorial Drive Unit H
Bolingbrook, IL 60440
   (630) 226-0080
Location: Single
Congr. District: 11
County: Will

Phase I

Contract Number: HQ003419P0042
Start Date: 1/21/19    Completed: 7/20/19
Phase I year
Phase I Amount
The capability to reliably and remotely detect and track tactical surface targets in a high-velocity projectile after launch is a critical need. The discrimination of man-made objects can be assisted by the detector technology, with options including two-color detectors and polarimetric filtering in the thermal infrared bands. The level of complexity in the focal plane array affects its survivability under high accelerations. Episensors is uniquely positioned to develop an integrated Dewar-cooler assembly (IDCA) for a seeker capable of providing the image quality necessary to detect and distinguish man-made objects, and is also ideal for reliably surviving launch and capturing images at high frame rates in high-velocity operation. The main focus of Phase I will be to evaluate detector-cooler combinations and determine the configuration that can give the optimal performance and launch survivability. In-depth studies of cooler survivability, detector performance and survivability, and IDCA performance will be conducted. Digital processing algorithmic approaches, such as advanced noise suppression and machine vision, will be evaluated to enhance detection capabilities. This will lead to full prototype demonstration in Phase II.

Phase II

Contract Number: HQ0003421C0008
Start Date: 12/8/20    Completed: 12/7/22
Phase II year
Phase II Amount
The capability to reliably and remotely detect and track tactical surface targets in a high-velocity projectile after launch is a critical need for success. The goal of the Phase II effort is to design and manufacture infrared (IR) seeker prototypes capable of surviving high-g acceleration. In the Phase I studies, we identified viable candidate materials and specifications for the detector, optics, and temperature regulation while also identifying points of interest in reducing size, weight, and power of the seeker system. The objectives for the Phase II efforts address these conclusions, proposing one early-stage prototype to identify unforeseen points of failure in the seeker design. The design points focused on in the base period will include ruggedized focal plane fabrication, cooling material integration, electronics and optics fabrication, and shell housing. Necessary modifications will be addressed following a preliminary launch test for the final prototype assembly and delivery. As an option, we also propose device fabrication with twodimensional IR sensing technologies.