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DARPA Wants PICs For Next Gen Military Gyroscopes

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The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Microsystems Technology Office is asking industry to develop relatively simple portable PICs for high-performance position, navigation, and timing (PNT) devices as an alternative to GPS for when satellite navigation signals are not available.

A PIC or integrated optical circuit provides capabilities for information signals imposed on optical wavelengths, typically in the visible spectrum or near-infrared, 850"“1650 nanometers.

The Atomic-Photonic Integration (A-PhI) program seeks to develop trapped-atom based, high-performance PNT devices, reducing the complexity of these atomic systems by using PICs. According to the DARPA document, the photonic integrated circuits will replace the optical assembly behind devices such as sensitive and accurate angle sensors and clocks, while still enabling the necessary trapping, cooling, manipulation and interrogation of atoms.


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