NASA Phase 2 SBIR Will Include Laboratory Testing of Concept

Michigan Aerospace Corporation (MAC), an advanced engineering and products company, today announced that it has been awarded a NASA Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase 2 contract to develop its Molecular Air Data Clear Air Turbulence Sensor (MADCAT). MADCAT will look kilometers ahead of the aircraft to detect and warn of clear-air turbulence, a significant hazard to airliners and other aircraft, using MAC’s exclusive Direct Detection Doppler Wind LIDAR (D3WL) technology. MAC was founded in 1996 to commercialize ultraviolet-based LIDAR, or Light Detection and Ranging, technology for a variety of markets. Using ultraviolet light allows MAC’s LIDARs to operate in clear air, critical to the clear-air turbulence application where suspended dust and water vapor may not be present and which other sensors require. MADCAT operates from behind a flush-mounted window and will also sense airspeed along with air pressure and temperature. The MADCAT Phase 2 program will run for two years starting in early 2011.