Advanced Technology Center


Nov 18, 2013 (6 years and 7 months ago)


Space Systems Company
Advanced Technology Center
Building the Future through Innovation
San Francisco Bay Area
Denver Metropolitan Area
and Electro-Optics
Precision Pointing
and Controls
and Structures
Thermal Sciences
Technology Focused on
Our Customers’ Missions
Lockheed Martin Corporation’s Advanced
Technology Center maintains expertise in
numerous technologies. By leveraging these
technologies and applying an integrated,
multidisciplinary approach, we help solve our
customers’ most demanding technical challenges.
Modeling, Simulation
and Information Sciences
Space Sciences
and Instrumentation
Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Technology Center
Building the Future through Innovation
Aerospace and defense customers turn to Lockheed Martin
Corporation’s Advanced Technology Center (ATC) for
answers to their complex scientific and technical problems.
Committed to advancing the state of the art through
innovation, we serve the practical needs of our business
partners by providing technical solutions that enable new
architectures and new missions—and build the foundation for
future development.
The ATC takes an integrated, systems-level approach to the
challenges presented by 21st century aerospace and defense
missions. Looking at mission requirements from multiple
perspectives, we produce robust, innovative solutions that
pave the way for pioneering technical achievements,
contribute to the body of scientific knowledge and create
entirely new capabilities.
Lockheed Martin
Space Systems Company
Advanced Technology Center
3251 Hanover Street, Palo Alto, CA 94304
Advanced Technology Center
Connecting Technology to Customers’ Missions
The ATC develops innovative technological solutions that target our customers’ needs. An entire organization within
the ATC is charged with keeping a finger on the pulse of customer needs to help guide the future direction of
technical development. Our staff maintains strong connections with program development teams at the Department
of Defense and Homeland Security, within the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and
throughout Lockheed Martin Corporation with the goal of better understanding our customers’ missions. This close
association fosters effective communication and results in innovative solutions that are incorporated into programs
to improve technical performance, shorten development time and reduce developmental and operational costs.
Excelling in Space Science
The Space Sciences effort represents an
independent line of business within the
organization. Our Solar and Astrophysics and
Space Physics Departments combine
technological expertise from throughout the
ATC to build unique space instrumentation for
monitoring the Sun, Earth and space
environments. With a strong, demonstrated
record of excellence—successfully fielding
more than 160 space instruments in the past
40 years—our space scientists are highly
acclaimed members of the international
scientific community. This dedicated group
has made major contributions to the current
understanding of space physics and the sun-
solar system connection. In addition, this work
feeds experiential data back to the rest of the
ATC, providing a dynamic environment for the
development of further technology.
Technological Excellence
The Advanced Technology Center—excellence contained within
a fully integrated science and technological center—is one of the
largest concentrations of advanced research and development
activity in the aerospace industry. The ATC comprises 235
laboratories, including 42 dedicated to flight hardware, at facilities
in Silicon Valley, California, and the Denver, Colorado, area.
More than 700 engineers and scientists, most holding advanced
degrees, are practiced in a wide array of technical disciplines.
Since the 1950s, we have been dedicated to serving Lockheed
Martin Corporation’s customers by turning technological
breakthroughs into practical business solutions.
Focusing on Practical Results
Although our researchers operate at the frontiers of technological
development, we understand the importance of disciplined business
performance. The ATC has a proven track record for responsible program
management and maintaining trusted partnerships with our customers. Close
cooperation among our science, engineering and program leadership teams
reduces mission risk and optimizes return on investment.
In addition, the work performed at the ATC often creates new technological
possibilities. This can have a profound impact on the business by generating
novel opportunities for our customers.
Building Strong Technological Foundations
Providing effective, cutting-edge technical solutions to the aerospace and
defense communities requires solid scientific and mathematical foundations.
For example, the ability to understand the wavelength-dependent
fundamentals of observable phenomena has a direct impact on the ability to
accurately address customers’ remote sensing, communications, missile
defense and directed-energy missions. Applying our growing knowledge of
phenomenology in all of these pursuits allows us to develop specific technical
solutions for a wide array of customer missions.
Leveraging our extensive knowledge of first principles, the ATC provides
focused troubleshooting and problem-solving services to the Lockheed Martin
corporate community. When a program faces difficult issues—such as the
need to improve the performance of materials under extreme conditions or an
unusual requirement to measure extremely subtle shifts in electromagnetic
radiation—ATC scientists and engineers apply their expertise in fundamental
chemistry, physics and mathematics to develop unique, often game-changing,
Complementary Core Capabilities
To support the advanced technology requirements of Lockheed Martin and its
government, military and civil customers, the ATC maintains leadership in
several complementary technical disciplines. By combining these core
capabilities, we build premier instruments for space science research, and
design and build progressive technical solutions for military weapons and
surveillance systems as well as for missile defense and homeland security
Optics and Electo-Optics
Precision Pointing
and Controls
Materials and Structures
Thermal Science
Modeling, Simulation and
Information Science
Space Sciences
and Instrumentation
Optics and Electro-Optics
Mastering Challenges
in Advanced Optics
Many systems that Lockheed Martin develops
for ground, airborne and space applications
have an optical mission or contain critical
optical subsystems—and our customers often
present demanding optical challenges. For
example, the requirement to focus a high-
energy laser beam on a high-speed target,
through a turbulent atmosphere, from a
moving aircraft demands unique solutions in
optical pointing, tracking and wavefront
control. Building a camera that can resolve a
faint celestial object over 10 billion light-years
away presents another set of optical design
The ATC develops complex electro-optical
systems that must achieve high levels of
performance, often under very difficult
conditions. Our pursuits in this area
encompass the design and execution of
sensor systems, both “passive” systems that
measure only signals provided by nature and
“active” systems that send out their own probe
beams and then measure the beams’ return to
extract information about physical
observables. We also design and develop
transmission systems in which optical signals
are propagated outward to meet requirements
for missions such as communications and
directed energy.
We have supported critical defense programs
such as Airborne Laser (ABL) and Multiple Kill
Vehicle (MKV) as well as important new
scientific efforts such as the Near Infrared
Camera (NIRCam) for the James Webb
Space Telescope. ATC scientists, engineers
and technologists utilize the full spectrum of
disciplines necessary to execute advanced
electro-optic concepts—from optical design
and performance analysis to end-to-end
testing of electro-optic systems. This depth of
experience allows us to deal effectively with
any kind of optics-related problem, offering
Lockheed Martin customers comprehensive
electro-optic solutions while giving the
company a critical competitive edge.
Airborne Laser
ABL is a highly modified B747 with a fully articulating turreted beam
director, high energy laser weapon and beam control system.
Airborne Laser Test Bed
This test bed proved early concepts for beam control.
Our strength is developing new architectures and
algorithms as well as building blocks such as novel
wavefront sensors, fast-steering mirrors, deformable
mirrors and optical delay lines. A critical design
challenge is to understand and mitigate the effect of
atmospheric turbulence on the performance of optical
systems. To that end, we have established world-
class analytical and simulation capabilities that
provide new insights into future systems.
Adaptive Optics
In adaptive systems, actuated optics use sensor
measurements to adapt to changing conditions,
dramatically improving optical performance.
Applications that benefit from adaptive optics
techniques include:
• Directed energy systems:Increase the
quality and stability of the transmitted beam,
delivering higher power to the target
• Imaging systems:Enhance image quality and
• Free-space laser communications systems:
Improve the performance of optical links
Optical Delay Lines Fast-Steering Mirrors
NIRCamwill investigate the earliest origins of the
universe by imaging stars at the furthest reaches of the
universe in the near infrared.
Space Telescopes
ATC optical designers are building the Near
Infrared Camera (NIRCam), the principal science
instrument aboard the James Webb Space
Telescope (JWST).Building and delivering a flight
imaging system that works well over a large
spectrum (0.6 to 5.0 microns), and under hard
cryogenic conditions (35 Kelvin),presents
significant design challenges. Moreover, the
observatory operates at the second Lagrangian
point—1 million miles from Earth—therefore, no
servicing missions are possible and reliability is
76-Actuator Deformable Mirror
(2 shown)
Mirror on
Optics and Electro-Optics
(a) Dark Cloud
Dense Core
200,000 AU 10,000 AU
500 AU
10,000 to
100,000 yrs
(b) Gravitational
(c) Protostar
NIRCam Optics
Filter Wheel
Dichroic Beam
Camera Triplet
Long Wave Focal
Plane Array
Short Wave Focal
Plane Array
Fold Flats
Distributed Aperture Telescope Optics
In imaging applications, the distributed aperture
approach uses multiple small telescope modules to yield
a system with a much larger effective aperture than a
single module. The distinct advantage of this approach is
that these modules can be packaged in a smaller
envelope, reducing the size, weight and cost of the
system and providing a new path to an affordable high
Star-9 Laboratory Test Bed
Star-9 Distributed Aperture Telescope
Many small phased telescope modules yield a larger effective
aperture. Measured Modulation Transfer Function ( MTF) compares
well with theory (upper right) and is near diffraction limited
Initial Image-1 Module Final Restored
Image-9 Modules Phased
The key to making a distributed aperture optical
system work is to properly phase the individual
modules. We demonstrated the fundamental
feasibility of this approach with the Star-9 test bed
and have quantified performance with subsequent
test bed activities. Now we are exploring the utility of
a distributed aperture system as a Fourier transform
imaging spectrometer, providing both high spatial
and high spectral resolution without the need for
additional hardware by modifying the way the system
acquires and processes data.
Distributed aperture technology can also be applied
to optical projection of laser power. Compared to a
single projecting aperture, a properly phased
distributed N-aperture system can be used as a
transmitter that exhibits N
-fold enhancement of
peak intensity and N-fold reduction of spot size in the
far field. We demonstrated this behavior in the Hi
Powered Phased Arrays of Phased Arrays (HIPOP)
Program for the U.S. Airforce Research Lab.
0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1.0
Spatial Frequency (u/u
Optics and Electro-Optics
Optical Design Tool
To support distributed aperture development,
our optical designers use Optima, an ATC-
developed proprietary design tool uniquely
suited for high-performance systems. Optima
is the first optical design tool to implement the
features needed to handle distributed aperture
systems, giving development teams a
competitive advantage, and the first code to
implement polarization ray trace capabilities.
In addition, ATC code developers can readily
customize Optima to a specific configuration,
an advantage over commercial packages
where the source code is not accessible.
Advanced optical systems, such as the Space
Interferometer Mission (SIM) for the NASA Jet
Propulsion Laboratory, often require knowing the relative
positions of components to nano- or picometer
accuracies. In response to that need, the ATC has
developed a family of heterodyne-interferometric gauges
that define a new state of the art in metrology. Using
these discrete gauges, we have demonstrated relative
precision of 20 picometers.
In a related effort, ATC engineers demonstrated an
integrated, optics-based, miniaturized gauge to replace a
bulk-optic discrete system with many separate elements.
This integrated approach yields cost, size, weight and
risk advantages over the conventional approach.
Integrated Laser and Interferometer
Integrated Gauge. Miniaturized gauge (on top of can) saves
cost and weight compared with a discrete gauge in background.
ATC-developed code was used in Star-9 distributed aperture optical design.
Integrated Optical Gauge Design
Optics and Electro-Optics
Measurement Paths
Miniature Gauge
Earth Surveillance
The Lockheed Martin Space Based Infrared System (SBIRS) HEO-1
instrument scans the Earth to detect missile launches. In this image,
SBIRS detects the hot plume and trail of a Delta-IV rocket (upper right
hand corner) launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base.
Rocket Exhaust Physics
ATC spatial model shows plume exhaust gas and particulate infrared
(IR) emission at an altitude of 200 kilometers.
Exploiting Physics
to Derive Observables
Many of the technological challenges we face
today involve sensing and deciphering subtle
changes in electromagnetic radiation. Tasks
such as observing ozone depletion in the
Antarctic upper atmosphere, measuring the
effects of solar flares on Earth’s
magnetosphere, and identifying and tracking
ballistic missile launches around the globe
require an ability to read fluctuations in
spectral emissions.
A growing core capability at the ATC,
phenomenology is the science concerned with
predicting, measuring and analyzing spectral
observables—from the ultraviolet to the long-
wave infrared—for such diverse applications
as environmental monitoring, scientific
research and military surveillance. By
accurately measuring and interpreting spectral
observables, then coupling that knowledge
with an understanding of the critical
requirements of practical applications, we
develop specific technical solutions for a wide
array of customer missions. In essence,
phenomenology underpins our ability to
“understand the problem,” allowing us to
develop the best solution to solve it.
ATC phenomenologists support advanced
technology development across multiple lines
of business. Our work embraces atmospheric
physics, atmospheric transmission, remote
sensing and detection, spectroscopy, rocket
exhaust plume physics and re-entry sciences.
Sensor Design Applications
When developing sensors for any
application, the ATC’s mission is to
translate what nature allows us to see
into an optimal design. Sensor design
has no “one size fits all” solution.
Each application requires a fresh
examination of the phenomenology
involved with the mission. This often
means returning to basic first
principles physics to identify relevant
phenomena and then constructing
models to characterize the emissive
and reflective properties inherent in
an observable scene.
Accurate radiometric maps or scenes
are an essential aspect of sensor
system design. Using high-power
computers and special
phenomenology models, our
engineers and technologists generate
scenarios that simulate the real-world
conditions under which the sensor
must carry out its mission.
Because an intricate spectral
relationship exists between target,
background and atmosphere, minute
changes in a sensor’s spectral
bandpass can dramatically affect its
performance. With a suite of models
and expertise available, sensor
bandpass optimization has become a
core capability at the ATC and a
significant benefit to many Lockheed
Martin sensor programs.
Once a sensor is fielded,
phenomenology expertise supports
the analysis of data acquired by the
sensor in order to characterize and
validate the performance of the
sensor system. These analyses
include the transformation of the
sensor output stream into spectral
identification, remote sensing feature
extraction and/or intelligence data
High-Altitude Clouds
The ATC-built Cryogenic Limb Array Etalon Spectrometer (CLAES) was the first
instrument to globally map the frequency of upper tropospheric cirrus cloud
occurrence using the infrared. Thin cirrus clouds commonly appear near the tropical
tropopause at altitudes between 12 and 18 kilometers.
Atmospheric Modeling
Our researchers use 4D atmospheric
circulation (x,y,z,t) models to predict high
spatial and high temporal atmospheric
variables with applications to remote
sensing and air quality monitoring
systems. This example illustrates a
simulation of hurricane Katrina (below).
Legend: white is cloud ice, light blue is
cloud liquid water, dark blue is ocean and
light brown is land.
Sensor Band Trades
Computer models predict the spectral radiance and atmospheric transmission
compared with measured satellite data from the MODerate Imaging Spectrometer
(MODIS). Comparisons such as these provide the spectral basis for models used in
system-level band trades.
Radiance Image
The radiance image above is a
simulation of the hurricane model
as viewed by a geostationary
satellite platform using an MWIR
sensor band at 6.95 microns.
Atmospheric Transmission
2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16
Mean Radiance (microflicks)
Center of band (µm)
Plexus atm. Trans.
Plexus atm. Rad.
Ssgmmean rad.
Modis mean rad.
Remote Sensing Models and Simulation
Phenomenology addresses a broad range of
atmospheric science and remote sensing
topics. These include end-to-end
hyperspectral modeling, system analysis
trade studies, atmospheric correction
algorithms, data extraction algorithms related
to the Earth’s surface and atmosphere, and
chemical detection.
The ATC employs a high-performance
computing environment to develop state-of-
the-art remote sensing phenomenology
software and mathematical algorithms to
model natural processes. Our computer
simulation laboratory hosts a variety of
radiative transfer, atmospheric circulation and
detailed sensor models to aid in the
understanding and exploitation of remotely
sensed data.
Hyperspectral Data Exploitation
Image (left) illustrates the detection of a controlled
gas release at a test facility using state-of-the-art
hyperspectral processing tools. The plot (below)
illustrates the spectral fit of the gas to the super-
pixel spectrum after extensive processing.
Rocket Exhaust Plume Radiation
Rocket exhaust plume signatures are a core
phenomenology interest area. Our engineers model
all aspects of flight from the launch to the post-boost
deployment phase. The ATC developed the
government standard code for high-altitude missile
exhaust radiation and a unique signature model for
the exhaust radiance from unconventional missiles
flying at extreme angles of attack. We also
developed an advanced radiance model for the
persistent trail left behind by most missiles. These
advanced ATC codes supplement government
models and allow missile defense systems to more
readily recognize a threat missile’s behavior and
respond accordingly.
Other areas of expertise include modeling exhaust
plume radiance from the small divert jets used to
control interceptors. These models allow us to
characterize the performance of an interceptor and
minimize the potential for sensor blinding.
Modeling Medium Wave Infrared (MWIR) Radiance
ATC phenomenologists use a Direct Simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC)
plume code to predict the exhaust flow field and associated MWIR
radiance map of plumes generated from a divert and attitude control
system (DACS) employed by a high-altitude interceptor. Tail-on views
(inset) of the interceptor and plume show how the model has been
validated against actual flight measurement of DACS plumes from a
ground-based sensor.
Active and Passive
Remote Sensing
A simulated passive image
(above) is modeled with
Digital Image Remote
Sensing Image Generator
). The image
represents a 7.0-cm spatial
resolution simulation of 218
spectral bands from 0.39 to
2.56 microns. The model
includes aerosol, haze and
multi-scattering effects.
Three-dimensional Topography
This shows the same scene from a simulated
scanning LIDAR system on a moving platform. The
simulation includes atmospheric contributions and
photon counting statistics.
Wavelength (microns)
Fit Value
8 9 10 11 12 13
Missile Detection and Tracking
Analysts insert computed theater missile infrared radiance (hard body and
plume in the 3- to 5-micron band) into a desert background radiance scene.
This type of scene is used to test and develop detection and tracking
algorithms for the challenging case of low-intensity targets embedded in
highly cluttered backgrounds.
Critical Analyses for
Missile Defense Applications
The ATC models the full range of midcourse
and reentry objects, incorporating experience
in material properties, heat transfer, fluid
dynamics, pyrolysis and ablation to generate
passive observables in the visible through
long wavelength infrared (LWIR). Individual
targets are analyzed and rendered in
aggregate to feed hardware-in-the-loop
simulators. Data are routinely analyzed and
compared with predictions. Additional
capabilities involve off-body phenomena such
as reentry wakes (RF and IR) from ablating
heat shield products and trails from residual
fuel interaction with the atmosphere.
Target Modeling
Midcourse and reentry target models generate
surface temperatures (right) that are then
validated against radiance measurements (far
right) using emission and reflection algorithms.
The modeling accounts for heat transfer during
reentry, in-depth thermal conduction, pyrolysis
and ablation and heating effects in rarefied
flow regimes.
Ground Fire Data Analysis
Results of 11-micron observations show the positive contrast flame front
and embers (left) and the negative contrast smoke trail (right).
Characterizing the Battlespace
Theater commanders require information that
describes the environments they will face.
Therefore, phenomenology also characterizes
battlespace events such as explosions and
fires. We are developing and validating both
spectral and temporal models of these events.
Other vital information when considering
deployments of ground assets includes
location of ground fires, estimates of their size
and potential for propagation, and direction of
propagation. Accurate detection and
characterization of fires for remote sensing
involves critical waveband and algorithm
selection. The ATC is analyzing overhead
data to define spectral characteristics useful
for early fire detection.
As mission requirements become more demanding,
the need for more sophisticated control over the
operation of advanced systems increases. How do we
stabilize a camera, mounted on a jittering satellite, to
achieve ultra-sharp images of Earth from 700
kilometers out in space? How do we point a telescope
with enough precision to measure the minute
variations in the position of a star located hundreds of
light-years away?
Finding practical answers to questions like these is
one of the great challenges in advanced technology
development—and it is one of the core competencies
of the ATC. Our Precision Pointing and Controls
organization provides mission-critical support for
many Lockheed Martin lines of business as well as for
external customers’ research and development efforts.
Operating across the entire design and development
cycle, ATC teams use a variety of tools and rapid
prototyping techniques to model complex systems in a
short period of time. These end-to-end mission
simulations predict the behavior of dynamic systems
in the environment in which they are expected to
Our pointing and controls engineers and technologists
have supported multiple high-profile programs
including Terminal High Altitude Area Defense
(THAAD), Airborne Laser (ABL), Space Based
Infrared System (SBIRS) and Gravity Probe B. In
addition, advanced research and development efforts
in areas such as innovative system and control
architectures, structural dynamics, vibration isolation,
precision optical and wavefront control, advanced
navigation, and high-speed and ultra-quiet electronics
enable future systems with ever greater capabilities.
The ATC also explores new frontiers in the
development of autonomous and distributed systems.
One example is complex robotic systems that can
perform difficult tasks in remote locations without
human intervention, executing missions with a high
level of autonomy. These smart systems will play an
increasingly important role in defining and enabling
new missions and new business opportunities.
Predicting and Controlling
the Behavior of Complex
Dynamic Systems
Multi-Petal Test Bed (MPT)
With dynamics similar to those of future large-scale space-
based optical systems, the MPT is a half-scale version of an
8-meter-diameter deployable telescope containing a
segmented primary mirror. The MPT is equipped with flight-
like hinges and latches for precision mirror deployment and
over 500 accelerometers for dynamics characterization. It is
supported by a six-degree-of-freedom hybrid gravity offload
system with corner frequencies between 0.1 and 0.2 Hz. We
used the MPT to validate novel algorithms capable of
performing system identification with modal densities in
excess of 40 modes per Hz.
Space Structures Technologies (SST)
Our SST program addresses the needs of future systems
requiring deployment and operation of very large structures
in space. The SST test bed contains a fully functional
spacecraft bus hardware emulator and a 16- by 1.8-meter
payload with 1-Hz first structural mode representative of a
large space structure. We use the test bed to develop,
validate and assess performance of critical technologies
such as metrology systems, real-time system
characterization, vibration mitigation and adaptive control.
Precision Pointing and Controls
Spacecraft Sensor Pointing Systems
Autonomous Star Trackers (AST) developed and built by
the ATC define the state of the art in autonomous, high-
performance space sensors. Our AST-201 and AST-301
perform rapid and reliable attitude acquisition without
a priori attitude information. They use robust algorithms,
self-initialize after power-up and require minimum
operator involvement.
More than 10 units have been flown. Two redundant
AST-301 star trackers serve as the primary attitude
sensors for the pointing control system in the Spitzer
Space Telescope. These trackers are fully autonomous,
allowing acquisition anywhere in the sky in less than
3 seconds with a 99.98 percent success probability.
Their accuracy—a bias error of only 0.16 arcseconds per
axis—exceeds system requirements by a factor of four.
This level of performance enables the Spitzer telescope
to be pointed directly at celestial objects in a shorter
period of time, significantly improving science
observation time during the life of the mission.
Courtesy NASA/JPL-Caltech
Autonomous Star Tracker
The AST is a reliable inertial attitude sensor with demonstrated
sub-microradian accuracy in operational space systems.
Control and Automation
The ATC’s Control and Automation
Laboratory (CAL) has extensive facilities and
demonstrated capabilities for development of
autonomous systems—from component
technologies such as sensors, actuators,
manipulators, interfaces and algorithms to
system-level demonstrations using multiple
spacecraft hardware emulators.
Our research focuses on real-time
autonomous control of multiple vehicles for
varying applications, including precision
formation flying for distributed aperture
imaging and automated in-space assembly.
We develop algorithms and sensors for long-
range and proximity operations, collision
avoidance, rendezvous and docking, failure
detection and remediation, and control
reconfiguration that are critical for achieving
high levels of autonomy in space.
Spacecraft Hardware Simulators
Future space missions will rely on the support of
numerous distributed platforms. To enhance understanding
of the various issues these missions will encounter, ATC
scientists have produced self-propelled robotic platforms that
emulate in hardware the functionality of spacecraft. In
laboratory tests, these platforms provide crucial first-look data in
areas such as navigation, communications, collective planning,
resource balancing and integrated behaviors.
Precision Pointing and Controls
Metrology Systems
The calibration of our metrology system for a 30-m deployable boom
demonstrated accuracy of 0.3 mm over a deflection range of ±1-m,
and 15-Hz data update rate.
Space Structures
We develop and characterize high-
performance structures in support of
future space systems such as large
radar antennas and optical systems,
solar sails and in-space construction.
Our structures range from ultra-
lightweight booms of less than
60 gram/meter linear density to high-
stiffness booms that provide a stable
structure for antennas and
optical systems.
Testing of 8.5-m ultra-lightweight
deployable boom: ATC engineers
demonstrated real-time
characterization of high-performance
deployable booms using a six-
degree-of-freedom excitation system
and extensive instrumentation. The
test results were used to validate
thermal and structural dynamics
models. Our team developed an
approach for in-space testing of
large deployable structures including
visualization and metrology for
imaging during deployment and
measurement of mode frequencies
and mode shapes after deployment.
Modeling, Analysis and Simulation
ATC researchers develop high-fidelity dynamics models and
design control logic to assess and predict on-orbit performance.
ATC engineers developed Autolev and DYNACON for modeling
multi-rigid body dynamics and flexible body dynamics,
respectively. These proven tools provide exact representation
of the dynamics of complex systems and utilize efficient
algorithms to speed up simulations.
Image Processing Electronics
We develop high-speed adaptive optics and electronics to
rapidly track and correct for wave front distortions and
aberrations. Development focuses on the demonstration of
electronics and algorithms to accomplish a 10-kHz corrective
system. Our high-speed closed-loop wave front control consists
of a 30-kHz high-speed camera, parallel image processing,
100-kHz Micro Electro-Mechanical System (MEMS) deformable
mirror driver electronics and associated interfaces.
Pointing and Control
The pointing and control
assembly for a Space Based
Infrared System (SBIRS)
satellite is a high-performance,
two-axis gimbaled system with
stringent accuracy and agility
requirements. Our momentum-
compensated gimbal design
reduced exported loads to the
spacecraft by 97 percent. When
combined with sophisticated
control systems, this achieved
the stringent agility, stability and
accuracy requirements.
Our deployment mechanism
developed for the Collapsible
Rollable Tube (CRT) boom
technology allows multiple
controlled deployment and
retraction cycles, and provides full
stiffness during deployment and
state-of-the-art packing ratio.
Precision Pointing and Controls
Vision System Calibration Sample Data Set
Position Error vs. True Position at 30 Meters
X axis (mm)
Y axis (mm)
Position Error (µm)
High-fidelity simulations of DFP predict over 100 times on-orbit
performance improvement over state-of-the-art pointing and
isolation systems.
DFP Test Bed
With a 2-meter-diameter structure representative of a large
space optical system, the DFP test bed is a fully functional
spacecraft hardware emulator. In addition to dynamic similarity,
the test bed includes on board computers, sensors and
actuators equivalent to those found in spacecraft. Full three-
axis stabilization allows development and demonstration of real-
time flight control algorithms.
Control Architecture
Our advanced control architecture for systems with multiple payloads
allows precision independent control of various payloads and
simultaneous isolation from spacecraft disturbances.
HexPak is a modular deployable space structure consisting of
hexagonal bays that stack into a compact structure for launch,
and deploy on orbit to a planar structure. This expansive deck
area supports large aperture payloads and multiple payloads,
enables heat rejection significantly beyond traditional space
platforms, permits multiple manifests with minimal support mass,
and offers easy access on orbit for expansion, maintenance and
reconfiguration of the platform. Since each bay is fabricated and
tested individually, and easily accessible from all sides, the time
to manufacture a complete spacecraft is greatly reduced.
Two-Meter-Diameter Test Bed
A test bed with three bays was built to demonstrate physical
interfaces of the bays, and mechanical assemblies for deployment
and latching the structure. The test bed will also be used to measure
stiffness of the deployed structure, demonstrate signal and power
distribution, and provide a platform for implementing a network-
centric avionics and payload architecture. The modular structure
coupled with a networked avionics system makes HexPak the first
truly responsive space structure.
Precision Pointing and Controls
Payload Relative Motion Control
Support Module Relative Motion Control
Payload Attitude Control
2 …N
2 …N
Payload 1
Expected On-Orbit Pointing Performance for Large
Space Optical System – DFP and State of the Art
Wheel Speed (Hz)
RMSImage Motion (mas)
Stowed Deployed
Innovative Systems and Control Architectures
The ATC’s Disturbance-Free Payload (DFP) test bed
demonstrates a novel system architecture in which a
payload and spacecraft bus are separate bodies that fly
in close-proximity formation, allowing precision payload
control and simultaneous isolation from spacecraft
disturbances. The unique control architecture provides
isolation down to zero frequency, and sensor
characteristics do not limit isolation performance. We
have demonstrated broadband isolation in excess of 68
dB (a factor of greater than 2,500).
In the test bed, the payload and spacecraft bus are
coupled through a fully controlled non-contact interface
containing sensors and actuators. The payload contains
fine optical-pointing sensors; the spacecraft bus contains
a star tracker, three-axis fiber-optic gyros, reaction
wheels and thrusters. The test bed operates in closed-
loop control and is three-axis stabilized. Payload pointing
stability is less than 1 microradian in the laboratory
Communications Design
Communications science laboratories at the ATC
offer a gamut of design services—from initial
concepts for proposed systems to operation
and maintenance of deployed systems. RF
communications system engineers design, evaluate
and implement tracking, telemetry and command
subsystems; RF and laser satellite communication
links; and bent-pipe and processing payloads for
military, commercial and deep space
communication applications.
To develop communications systems and
components for major programs such as Milstar,
Iridium and the Mobile User Objective System
(MUOS), we exploit RF, photonic, millimeter-wave
and laser hardware spanning a full spectrum of
data rates. Our engineers and technologists also
develop diverse modulation schemes combined
with robust error-correcting codes to provide
reliable link performance.
ATC communications modeling and simulation
capabilities form the basis for predicting
performance for a wide variety of communications
designs. For example, we pioneered the turbo code
model for the Advanced Extremely High Frequency
(AEHF) system, using a parallel concatenated
convolutional code to demonstrate the effects of
gaussian minimum shift keying (GMSK) and
scintillation on the system. In addition, in-house
experts developed an acquisition and tracking
model to meet key Milstar and Astrolink
Advanced Telecommunications
• Communications architecture and system
• Antenna design and development
• RF and photonic product design, development
and production
For space systems—often operating at great
distances from Earth—reliable communications
systems are essential. Spacecraft operators
depend on these systems to control the satellite
and its payload and to beam back vital mission
data. Mission success hinges on the efficient and
successful transfer of this data.
The ATC has a long history of designing and
implementing advanced telecommunications
products and systems to meet these demanding
conditions. Our designers and engineers provide
end-to-end communication design capabilities to
customers who are developing systems ranging
from sea- and ground-based applications to deep
space exploration. We also support a broad cross
section of Lockheed Martin lines of business
including military satellite communications,
commercial telecommunications, fleet ballistic
missiles, commercial remote sensing and National
Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
ATC areas of research in the advanced
telecommunications field include cognitive radio
architecture and system development, advanced
phased array antenna design, direct-to-optical radio
frequency (RF) sensor development, optical and
RF beamformers, RF-photonic channelizers and
frequency translators, and tunable narrowband
optical/RF filters. The combination of group
expertise and facility is well-suited to provide
unique design, fabrication and testing capabilities
that are advantageous for rapidly evaluating
research and development concepts and
developing new products.
Our expertise in telecommunications focuses on
three key areas:
Remote Operations
and Data Collection
ATC role: System performance
analysis, including ground coverage
modeling and simulation
ATC role: Communications
support, engineering and key
subsystem elements
Mobile User Objective System (MUOS)
ATC role: Key communication system
engineering and traffic modeling
analysis and support
Lunar Prospector
ATC role: Development of antennas
and other subsystem elements;
communications support and integration
Advanced EHF
ATC role: System performance
analysis including Turbo Code
modeling and simulation
ATC role: Extensive system
engineering analysis and key
subsystem elements
Advanced Telecommunications
Eb/No (db)
0 105
Antenna Design
The ATC has more than 40 years of experience in
developing reflectors, phased arrays, horn
antennas, planar and conical spirals, helixes, patch
antennas, log periodic dipole antennas and RF
lenses for antenna systems—our designs are as
varied as the applications.
Reflector antenna technologies include deployable
mesh reflectors, extremely lightweight aluminum
reflectors, and both solid and foldable graphite
reflectors. We have built reflector feeds using spiral
and horn antennas; wideband and narrowband horn
antennas using corrugated, dual or quad ridge
designs; and horns capable of operating at dual
frequencies (20 and 44 GHz) from a single
ATC engineers have developed a specialty in
conical and planar spirals with multi-octave, multi-
mode operation that simultaneously receive right-
hand and left-hand circular polarizations. We have
built end-fire and side-fire helixes from UHF to
X-band, and dielectric lenses for horn antennas to
shape the beamwidth and to adjust the phase
center. And we have used Rotman lenses for
phased array beamforming applications.
This large S-band phased array antenna
operates from 2.2 GHz to 2.4 GHz. Capable
of seeing out 1100 nautical miles, the
antenna generates sufficient beams to track
eight independent targets. It has no moving
parts and is electronically steered over a
120-degree field of view. The highly
integrated sub-array design, which uses
multi-layer microwave boards, reduces cable
and connector counts by 70 percent,
resulting in a lighter weight, more compact
and more reliable system.
Deployable Mesh Reflector
2.5-Octave Horn Antenna
We have designed, built and delivered phased array
antennas (ranging from L-band to Ka-band), developed
X-band communication phased arrays and high-power
arrays. ATC antenna design engineers built the S-band
Mobile Array Telemetry (SMART) antenna system for the
U.S. Navy. This large-scale integrated-electronic
scanning array antenna system receives telemetry data
and autonomously tracks missiles during fleet ballistic
missile testing. It includes low-noise amplifiers and
beamforming networks integrated onto the array
subpanel. The SMART antenna system architecture has
led to simplifications in software development,
beamforming networks and calibration. We have also
done extensive research in true time delay, control of
spectral regrowth and FPGA-based command and
control of phased arrays.
ATC antenna design engineers have also built X-band
and Ku-band phased array antennas for airborne
applications such as the DARKSTAR UAV, ground
applications such as the Portable Array Terminal System
(PATS) and space applications such as Iridium where we
designed the main mission phased array.
EHF Luneberg Lens Antenna
Absorber Loaded 8-Arm Spiral Helix
Advanced Telecommunications
RF and Photonics Development
The Advanced RF/Photonics Group resides in a 35,000-
square-foot building in Sunnyvale, Calif., that includes a
14,000-square-foot clean room dedicated to design,
fabrication, assembly, testing and qualification of RF,
optics, photonics and hybrid components and
assemblies. The facility possesses state-of-the-art
semiconductor and photonic integrated circuit fabrication
equipment that enables process development and
custom component fabrication in a variety of material
platforms to support cutting-edge RF/photonic research
and product development.
In particular, the ATC’s Advanced RF/Photonics Group
designs and builds communications assemblies for
multiple frequencies. The group pioneered the
development of advanced photonic devices for space-
based applications.
RF engineers have designed and delivered specialized
RF devices and assemblies (ranging from UHF to
wideband), including low-noise amplifiers, solid-state
power amplifiers, filters, transmit/receive modules,
frequency-hopping receivers, frequency synthesizers,
narrowband and wideband up- and down-frequency
converters, transceivers and other RF assemblies.
Recent developments include an 8- to 10-GHz
synthesizer assembly with 1-Hz step size.
The ATC also is responsible for the first space-qualified
electro-optical receiver (EOR) that operated from DC to
18 GHz. This EOR was designed, built, tested and
delivered to the customer in less than 14 months. Based
on this design, the ATC has developed similar photonic
receivers to support other research and development
Recent development projects in our lab include RF-
photonic channelizers, optical beamformers, RF-photonic
frequency translators, direct-to-optical RF sensors,
wideband modulators, tunable narrowband optical/RF
filters. Overall the combination of group expertise and
facility is well-suited to provide unique design, fabrication
and testing capabilities that are advantageous for rapidly
evaluating R&D concepts and developing new products.
Electro-Optical Receiver
Optical Beamformer Test Bed
RF-Photonic Frequency Translator Test Bed
IKONOS Wideband Upconverter
60-GHz High-Power Solid-State Amplifier
Advanced Telecommunications
Materials and Structures
New Materials and
Structures for
Applications from
Radio Frequency
to Rockets
Materials are fundamental to the success of any mission.
Our technological progress through the millennia has been
enabled by and reflected in our ability to modify and use
materials to our own ends in such a profound way that
historical epochs are named for the materials used within
them. In 4000 years, we have advanced from the Bronze
Age to an age of nanotechnology where we are developing
and exploiting the ability to manipulate and tailor materials
atom by atom.
The ATC’s materials scientists and engineers were
intimately involved in the materials advances that allowed
us to send men to the Moon and satellites to space; we
have worked on thermal protection systems for the space
shuttle and have experts in the chemistry of rockets. Today
our attention extends from the traditional aerospace focus
on strong, lightweight materials that operate under severe
conditions to a 21
century focus on using modifications at
the nanoscopic level to create multi-functional materials or
achieve materials with novel optical, electrical or thermal
We emphasize materials that make a difference in
aerospace applications. Therefore, we specialize in active
materials and devices; materials with tailorable interactions
with electromagnetic radiation, materials and devices for
spacecraft energy production and storage; energetic
materials; and high-temperature materials. ATC scientists
support hardware programs with advanced structural
simulation and failure analysis, nondestructive inspection
and chemical/gas sensing. We are actively engaged in
leading-edge technology such as nano-materials and micro-
electro-mechanical systems. Our work in advanced
materials technologies spans a variety of applications that
range from developing polymers for RF and optical
processing to monitoring the properties of solid rocket
For more than 40 years, we have been finding answers to
difficult problems and developing cutting-edge enabling
technologies for customers requiring
ever-increasing capabilities. A few current
beneficiaries of our research and investigative
capabilities include the U.S. Navy's Fleet
Ballistic Missile Program (FBM), the Air Force’s
Airborne Laser (ABL), NASA’s Near Infrared
Camera (NIRCam) for the James Webb Space
Telescope, and the Army’s Theater High
Altitude Area Defense (THAAD).
Virtual modeling and investigative analyses are routinely
performed by the Materials and Structures Department.
Computer models are used to simulate complex events
such as progressive failure in a composite panel or
predict the performance of a spacecraft under orbit
environments (above). Forensic analysis is performed on
flight hardware using resident, state-of-the-art
instruments such as a scanning electron microscope
(below) and real-time x-ray radiography.
Ceramic Nozzle Throat
The ATC received a 2004 Aviation Week
Technology Innovation Award for a rocket motor
nozzle throat made from ceramic material. Previous
experimental ceramics had poor thermal shock
resistance and low tensile strengths, preventing
their use in rocket applications. Our materials
scientists solved these problems using unique
ceramic compositions and fabrication methods.
This new near-zero erosion, net-molded ceramic
nozzle promises to improve solid rocket motor
performance and affordability. The ceramic nozzle
significantly outperformed the industry standard 4D
carbon-carbon material. The net-molding
fabrication technique is expected to reduce
fabrication costs by 50 percent. Potential program
applications are future Navy and Air Force strategic
missile systems.
Thermal Protection
Spacecraft subsystems require thermal and optical
properties to meet performance requirements and
maintain long mission life. The ATC has developed
and demonstrated thermal and optical coating
capabilities for a wide range of flight hardware
including XSS-11, Genesis, Mars98 and the
International Space Station. Our Denver facilities
support space and reentry environment test,
simulation and flight qualification evaluation. Large
in-situ vacuum chamber systems provide in-
chamber mechanical manipulation to test and verify
components and systems prior to space
deployment. Reentry environments can be
simulated with a 500-kW arc lamp and surface
shear system or an 80-kW plasma jet thermal
Advanced Propulsion Systems
Advanced hot gas control system designs
require metallic materials, such as
rhenium, with high strength and gas
compatibility above 2000ºC. The ATC
developed and demonstrated a low-cost
rhenium processing technology for hot
gas missile control systems. Potential
program applications are future Navy and
Air Force strategic missile systems.
Other possible applications include civil
space and tactical missiles.
Improved Rhenium
Using a solid-state diffusion process, the ATC
successfully homogenized rhenium and increased its
density and strength. The cost and process time were
dramatically decreased compared to conventional
powder metallurgy material. The ATC also has active
work in nanodeposition of rhenium coatings.
Tile Repair
The ATC developed the STA-54 On-orbit Tile Repair System, a crew-
operated backpack system to repair damage to the space shuttle
thermal protection tiles. Future applications include materials
processing and structure fabrication in space (above left).
Hardware Applications. Materials we have fabricated to improve space
environment survivability include the arc-sprayed thermal control
coating for the Genesis heat shield (above right).
Conventional Rhenium
ATC Rhenium
Materials and Structures
Ln Sintering Time (min)
Active Deformable Mirror
With 76 actuators and a 10- kHz frame rate,
this is the fastest mirror of this type in existence.
Active Materials
To enable the next generation of agile and adaptive optical systems,
we are working on the fundamental active materials technology that
drives wavefront correction systems. Our effort includes developing
and testing next-generation high-speed deformable mirror systems,
MEMS micromirror arrays and spatial light modulators as well as the
high-speed wavefront sensors and algorithms needed for high-speed
adaptive optics.
The ATC has developed and patented a suite of compositions for
electrostrictive ceramic materials for actuation. These materials have
the highest strain and lowest hysteresis in this family of materials.
They have been used to build sonar transducers (for the US Navy) as
well as high-speed continuous face sheet deformable mirrors.
30-Meter Path-Length Fourier Transform Infrared
(FTIR) Spectroscopy
The materials sampled have been analyzed by virtually
every standard analytical technique including the FTIR
spectroscopy shown above.
Chemical Sensing and Energetic Materials Analysis
The ATC’s Materials and Structures Department has amassed
extensive expertise in sampling and analysis of trace volatile
and semi-volatile organic material, inorganic gases and solid
residual materials associated with combustion processes
primarily in rockets. We have leveraged these capabilities in
the detection of general inorganic and organic material with a
strong emphasis on energetic materials. Sampling of target
materials is also performed using solid-phase micro-extraction
technology, standard absorbent materials, impinger systems
and cryo-coolers. Virtually every standard analytical chemistry
technique and many exotic techniques have been employed
for these analyses. The emphasis on energetic materials
stems from Lockheed Martin’s interest in maintaining critical
launch vehicle systems, characterizing weapons of war and
developing detection systems for homeland security
Next-Generation Adaptive Optics
Coherent imaging and targeting systems,
directed energy and laser communication
systems require adaptive optics for correcting
wavefront aberrations induced by propagation
through atmospheric turbulence.
The ATC has developed compact, low-power,
high-speed adaptive optics test beds that use
MEMS deformable mirrors/spatial light
modulators. These test beds include both
hardware and custom drive electronics to
evaluate mirrors, novel wavefront sensors and
control algorithms for adaptive optics
systems. We use the test beds to develop free
space laser communications, directed energy
systems and multiple target track/designate
Materials and Structures
MEMS Device
Test beds use a 1024-
pixel MEMS deformable
mirror from Boston
Corporation (BMC).
Test Bed
MEMS-based adaptive
optics test bed uses the
MEMS device above.
Aerospace Applications of Nanotechnology
The Materials and Structures Department is actively
conducting research and development in the field of
nanotechnology in conjunction with university, national
lab and small-business partners. We seek to develop,
understand and utilize nano-enabled materials for
energy generation and storage and nanoenergetic
materials for controlled propulsion. We have active
projects in the area of carbon nanotube-based
materials for thermal control and sensing applications.
We implement nano-enabled processes for deposition
of protective coatings on complex interior shapes.
First and foremost, our nanotechnology projects carry
a strong technology maturation emphasis, spanning
the stages of fundamental development through
device demonstrations—all aimed toward ultimate use
in the products and missions that define our company.
Within the field of nanotechnology, ATC Materials and
Structures has several focus areas that are relevant to
aerospace applications.
Device physics:Devices utilizing quantum effects are
increasingly available. While these commercial
products have been tested for durability in terrestrial
environments, Lockheed Martin frequently wishes to
utilize them in exotic locales, for instance, Mars. We
seek to understand the impact of shrinking feature
sizes and the use of more complex materials systems
in electronic devices and to develop the modeling and
simulation tools to predict performance over lifetime in
our use environment.
Tailorable materials:The synthetic flexibility of
organic and inorganic materials, especially those
formed into nanocomposites, permits development of
new materials with tailorable optical, thermal and
electronic properties. Using this approach, we are
actively developing new molecules and materials for
diverse applications ranging from nonlinear optical
materials to solar cells.
Energy applications:Multiple platforms, be they
individual soldiers or interplanetary probes, are
frequently “off the grid” and must carry their own
power generation and/or storage capability. We
investigate innovative means of converting and storing
energy, including nanomaterials such as
thermophotovoltaics, thin film photovoltaics and
nanophotonic devices. We incorporate these materials
and others into energy devices, including
thermoelectric devices, fuel cells and solar panels,
and utilize our customized test facilities to evaluate
their performance.
Molecular Model
Molecular modeling techniques
are employed to help us design
polymer-surface systems where
these molecular interactions are
critical to the composite
system’s function.
Carbon Nanotube Grass
Scanning electron
microscope image shows
25-mm-tall carbon
nanotubes grown at the
ATC. Inset is a single
nanotube at 300,000 times
Atomic Force Microscope (AFM)
image of rhenium nanoparticles used to
economically produce protective
coatings for parts with 2000ºC
operating temperatures.
3D Photonic Crystal
Tungsten photonic crystals
are produced by Sandia
for Lockheed Martin for
use in our energy
Flexible Antenna
The ATC has a clean fabrication
facility capable of incorporating
nanomaterials into photolitho-
graphically defined devices. Shown is
a polymer-based flexible RF sensor.
Falcon Reentry
Vehicle Power
System Concept
converters generate
power in reentry body
heat shield.
Materials and Structures
1.5 mm
0.5 mm
Thermal Sciences
Precision Multidisciplinary
Modeling and Analysis
Development of advanced optical systems involves a
complex multidisciplinary process to ensure that the
system will operate as intended. Following an initial
optical design, ATC thermal and structural engineers
analyze thermal response and deformations induced in
the optics by temperature gradients. An optical designer
then uses these deformations to characterize the impact
of the displacements on the wavefront quality of the
optical system. Our precision modeling capabilities can
accurately predict milli-Kelvin level temperature results
and unprecedented picometer level thermally induced
deformations in world-class space-based optical
The Gravity
Probe B Dewar
Managing the Effects
of Temperature in
Extreme Operating
Correlated Picometer
Deformation Predictions
Modeled Hardware
Analysis Model
Cryogenic Cooling Systems
Temperature variations profoundly affect the
operation of advanced aerospace systems—
from precision optics to rocket motors. Even
small changes in temperature can impact the
way a system operates, and Lockheed Martin
customers often are faced with managing
operations in extreme thermal environments.
Thermal scientists and engineers pursue a
variety of research and development endeavors
aimed at understanding the dynamic influence
temperature has on cutting-edge technology,
and develop new systems that can perform
successfully within the demands and constraints
presented by severe operational environments.
Areas of emphasis include:
• Precision thermal measurement and analysis
• Thermal design and analysis
• Thermal and structural modeling
• Computational fluid dynamics
• Multi-phase flow and heat transfer
• LADAR thermal engineering
• Space environmental simulation and testing
Our expertise in thermodynamics, heat transfer
and fluid mechanics is also applied to the design,
modeling and fabrication of premier cryogenic
space-based cooling systems. These systems
include open-cycle cooling using stored
cryogens, mechanical pulse tube cryocoolers
and adiabatic demagnetization refrigerators.
The ATC is instrumental in developing powerful
technical discriminators for Lockheed Martin
lines of business and in leveraging technological
innovation to create possibilities for our
customers and new opportunities for the
Milli-Kelvin Temperature
The ATC has been
providing cryogenic cooling
systems for space
applications for more than
35 years. The cooling
systems utilize stored
cryogens such as
superfluid helium and solid
hydrogen, neon, carbon
dioxide, methane,
ammonia, nitrogen and
argon to achieve a wide
range of temperatures
down to 1.8K.
Computational Fluid Dynamics
High-speed and large-memory computers
enable computational fluid dynamics (CFD)
to solve many thermal flow problems, including
those that are compressible or incompressible, laminar
or turbulent, and chemically reacting or non-reacting.
LADAR Thermal Engineering
The advent of laser sources on space-borne optical
systems has made thermal management an even greater
concern due to potentially greater temperature gradients.
In the case of laser diodes, temperature can also affect
the desired frequency of the transmitter, requiring tighter
temperature control. What is desired is a thermal
management system that is transparent to the mission—
one that weighs nothing, takes up no space, is rigid, uses
no power, has no disturbances and is robust. Thermal
management is a system-level enabler to the success of
the payload.
LADAR thermal management is focused toward these
goals. Combining Lockheed Martin’s high-capacity
variable conductance spiral groove heat pipes with laser
diodes and waveguides is a step in this direction.
Integrating the variable conductance heat pipes into the
thermal management system yields a system with
minimal space, mass, and power requirements.
Problem Solving
Researchers applied CFD to help
solve a cooling problem on a
modified electronic warfare training
aircraft in which the specialized
electronic equipment generated
too much heat for the
environmental control system.
Thermal engineers created a CFD
model used to design a heat
exchange system to channel air
from the cold aircraft skin to cool
the aft cabin that housed the
electronics. Model predictions were
then tested and verified in
laboratory experiments.
Thermal Sciences
Rocket Motor Design
ATC engineers developed a CFD model to characterize temperature,
pressure, flow field, heat transfer, particulate transport, water droplet evaporation
and other related phenomena in a solid rocket motor firing chamber. This simulation model,
in conjunction with scale-model tests, provides the basis for the design of a full-scale firing chamber.
All of these disparate scientific objectives share a
common requirement: They need space-based sensing
systems that operate at extremely low temperatures.
Missions like these present unique challenges. Cooling
an infrared sensor on a distant spacecraft to less than
5 Kelvin, for several years of continuous operation, is no
small task, yet the ATC has been providing such
cryogenic cooling systems for space applications for
more than 35 years.
Our thermal scientists, engineers and technologists
utilize their expertise in thermodynamics, heat transfer
and fluid mechanics to model and predict the
performance of advanced cooling systems. They also
have the design and manufacturing expertise to
transform analytic models into qualified hardware for
space. The ATC has built and tested more than 20 open-
cycle cooling systems for space using stored cryogens
such as superfluid helium and solid hydrogen, neon,
carbon dioxide, methane, ammonia, nitrogen and argon.
The Gravity Probe B Dewar
This is the largest superfluid helium Dewar in space,
cooling the science instrument to 1.8K for 16 months.
Open Cycle Cooling
Recent open cycle cooling systems developed at the ATC
Achieved all temperature /
lifetime objectives
64/146 K
Solid methane /
Solid ammonia
3 yr
Long Life Cooler
Achieved all temperature /
lifetime objectives
64/146 K
Solid methane /
Solid ammonia
5 yr
Extended Life
Launched 9/91. Achieved
all temperature / lifetime
15.5/128 K
Solid neon /
solid CO
20 mo
Cryogenic Limb
Array Etalon
Solid hydrogen
solid hydrogen
solid hydrogen
Cooling Method
10 mo
4 mo
16 mo
7 mo
9.5 K
6.6/12 K
1.8 K
7.2/9.8 K
Launched 4/96. Achieved
all temperature / lifetime
Launched in March 1999
Launched 4/04. Achieved
all temperature/lifetime
Launch in 2008
Gravity Probe B
Special Infrared
Imaging Tel.
Wide-field IR
Survey Explorer
Wide-field IR
Survey Explorer
Thermal Sciences
• Confirming Einstein’s general theory of relativity
• Searching for planets in distant galaxies
• Studying ozone depletion in Earth’s atmosphere
• Looking at “first light” from the birth of the universe
Cryogenic Cooling Systems
Compact, Flexible, Reliable Mechanical Systems
The ATC also produces mechanical pulse tube
cryocooler systems. These cryocoolers are lightweight,
power efficient and highly reliable, with lifetimes of 10
years or more.
Multi-stage cryocoolers, which produce temperatures as
low as 4 Kelvin, can provide operating environments at
different temperatures for simultaneous cooling of
detectors and optics. They have produced extremely low
temperatures in a compact space-based system and
represent a major breakthrough in cryogenic cooling
Two-stage Cryocooler
This pulse tube
cryocooler provides
cooling at two
temperatures, 55K and
140K, resulting in more
efficient sensor cooling.
Performance Testing
An ATC scientist
prepares a cryocooler for
test. The results show
excellent cooling
Four- Stage Cryocooler
This pulse tube cooler is being developed for Jet
Propulsion Laboratory space applications and has
achieved 3.8K cooling, which is required for advanced
astronomical missions.
Thermal Sciences
Heat Rejection Temp = 300K
First Stage Temp = 140K,
Second Stage Temp = 55K
50 70 90 110 130 150
First Stage Cooling (W)
Compressor Power (W)
Second Stage Cooling (W)
4 8 10 12 14 16
Cold Tip Temperature (K)
Cooling Power (mW)
60 W
100 W
180 W
240 W
Input Power
Sensor Signal and Image
Optical imaging systems are limited in
resolution, not only by the passband of the
imaging optics, but also by the detectors on
the image formation plane. When the detector
size is larger than the optical spot size, high
and low spatial frequencies may merge,
forming image degradation known as
“aliasing.” Algorithms can mitigate aliasing
artifacts by combining multiple aliased views
of the same scene so that the formerly
merged high spatial frequency features are
separated out and restored to their correct
locations. The effect is to reconstruct a sharp,
de-aliased, high-resolution image from
multiple blurred views.
Managing the Deluge…
Transforming Data into Action
Super Resolution
Under sampling during detection can blur a video
image (top). Super-resolution algorithms can restore
the original image quality. The de-aliased image
(below) is derived from a set of 10 blurred images.
In a world of rapidly evolving events, complex interactions
and ever-increasing volumes of information, the ability to
efficiently collect, manage and manipulate large volumes of
digital data from multiple sources and turn it into actionable
intelligence is paramount. At the ATC, cutting-edge skills in
end-to-end system modeling, simulation, data fusion,
machine-machine coordination and human-machine
interaction translate into improved performance for our
customers’ space systems.
The ATC’s expertise in information science offers the
company a critical edge that applies across a broad range
of customer missions. The ATC is developing advanced
technical discriminators in software algorithms,
architectures and modeling tools to enhance Lockheed
Martin’s competitive posture in key markets.
• Advanced software development and integration for
effective coordination and validation of systems and
services in a net-centric world
• Composable simulations and plug-and-play software
architectures for more agile, responsive space systems
• Network services analysis and development for
complex network topologies and architectures for
communications and navigation
• System-of-system analysis and tradespace optimi-
zation for engineering analysis of complex systems
• Multi-mission tasking algorithms and advanced
image processing for remote sensing
• Data fusion for target tracking and discrimination in
missile defense including end-to-end engagement
• Autonomy technology including planning, world
modeling, adjustable autonomy and fleet management
for space missions such as proximity operations
• Human-system interaction for managing complex
cooperative systems including human-robotic teams
for warfighting and space exploration
The ATC develops and fields systems and software
applications that respond intelligently and robustly to the
data deluge. These systems are self-aware, embedded in
complex topologies and capable of dealing with
heterogeneous sensors and disparate resources. Our
information scientists are pioneering methods of
combining, configuring, synthesizing and presenting
information for space systems. These efforts pay
dividends in improved technical capability, reduced
development risk and better prediction of system
Modeling, Simulation and Information Science
Digital Communications and Networking
Because increasingly complex global networks may
include multiple ground- and space-based assets,
there is a need to assess and analyze the optimal
configuration for these networks to ensure
operational efficiency and cost-effective
development and deployment.
To address this need, the ATC has developed
network simulation and emulation test beds. These
test beds allow engineers and technologists to
synthesize, visualize, analyze and emulate space
and ground networks. They include terrestrial and
orbital propagators coupled to network topology
generation and 3D visualization components. A
suite of algorithms (encompassing parameters
such as time schedules, antenna/aperture numbers
and affinities, line-of-sight, range constraints,
antenna pointing constraints, priorities and geo
coordinates) is combined to synthesize optimal
network topologies for given nodal capabilities and
Global Network Emulation Test Bed (GNET)
GNET can analyze network topologies for specific attributes (such
as latency) or to emulate actual, real-time, IP networks conforming
to the topologies. For that purpose, it utilizes a computing cluster in
which each network node and its associated links are emulated by
one CPU. Scriptable traffic generation and performance monitoring
are provided at each node. The emulation capability also can
interface directly to hardware-in-the-loop or external network
components and applications through standard Ethernet and serial
interfaces and over virtual private networks.
Data Fusion and Target Engagement
Missile defense presents complex engineering
challenges that must be addressed across a wide
variety of threat engagement scenarios. Among
many critical requirements, successful
engagements depend on defensive systems
maintaining continuous and accurate tracks through
all phases of the threat trajectory.
For missile defense, the tracking problem is
particularly challenging due to the high density of
targets and differing sensor views. The challenge is
to put each sensor’s measurements together into a
set of tracks that are continuous and pure, and that
further lead to resolved tracks on individual targets
as quickly as possible. To help address this
challenge, the ATC has developed a tracking
algorithm that combines multiple hypotheses with
multiple frame resolutions. Using this algorithm has
effectively reduced the time required to resolve
object tracks by over 125 seconds—an extremely
significant period in the missile engagement
Advanced Tracker
This tracker correlates measurements directly with the fused
track file and only requires resolution by a single sensor to
create resolved tracks. The standard approaches correlate
measurements first with sensor track files and then correlate the
sensor track files to create the fused track file. These track-to-
track approaches require object resolution by both sensors
before the correlations can be reliable, and dual sensor
resolution may require much more time than single sensor
Modeling, Simulation and Information Science
Relative CEI(m)
Projected Sensor
Resolution Cell
300 450 600 750
Time (s)
675 s
>800 s
All Targets Resolved by Advanced Tracker
(requires resolution by 1 sensor)
(requires resolution by 2 sensor)
Autonomous and Distributed Systems
Environmental monitoring, homeland defense, robotic
space exploration, missile defense and other critical
new applications often require systems with remote
autonomous operation. The ATC develops many
technologies that enable the operation of autonomous
and adaptive embedded networked systems.
Autonomous systems enable operation in complex
environments when human presence is not
acceptable due to safety, time, cost, distance,
environment, volume, weight, etc. For many space
missions, autonomy is the most viable solution; for
missions with remote control, autonomy still plays a
major role due to distance, time or bandwidth
limitations; and even manned systems have
autonomous capabilities that support mission success
due to the complexities of the requirements.
Working with members of the ATC Precision Pointing
and Controls department and our Autonomous
Robotics group in Denver, we are developing
autonomy technology for system validation, networked
collaboration, planning and fusion in support of
Lockheed Martin’s need for autonomous capabilities in
We are developing new distributed autonomous
control strategies for cooperative missile defense
engagement, where the decision time cycles are too
short for human oversight and the probability of
intercept is optimum.
Human Systems Interaction
Lockheed Martin fields complex systems. For
systems analysis and operational usage, human
system interaction is a critical link in getting our
solution correct. Users must have visibility into their
space systems as they are being built and when
deployed. For these users, mission-specific
visualization helps turn disparate data sets into
coordinated, actionable information. The ATC’s
mission visualization systems synthesize vast
amounts of data from far-reaching sources,
creating interactive environments that enable
operators to improve real-time analysis and
situational awareness.
Advanced Concepts in Global Situational Awareness
New visualization concepts impact the design and success of
integrated sensors in the sensor-shooter feedback loop.
The ATC is researching and prototyping game-changing
concepts that link end users and sensor systems to improve the
perception, comprehension and prediction necessary for global
situational awareness.
Autonomous Coordinated Teams
Teams are based on different dynamic optimum control
strategies for each phase of the engagement.
Modeling, Simulation and Information Science
Autonomous Coordinated
Coordinated Aimpoint Kill
Optimized Formation Control
Boost Phase Intercept
Enhanced situational awareness is achieved by
combining both modeled and sensed data with
visual representations to improve perception,
comprehension and prediction of battle space
events. The ATC’s Multi-Intelligence Exploitation
and Tangible Mission Visualization prototypes
integrate next-generation human-system interaction
concepts with advanced visualization, multi-modal
interface and automation technologies. These
prototypes address the future needs of the
command, control, communications, computers,
intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance
(C4ISR) user community. They also promote
enhanced situational awareness by providing
coordinated visualizations of multiple information
types, including geo-spatial, sensor coverage,
mission planning and archived imagery information.
Mission Architectures and Analysis
We perform system-of-system mission analysis to aid the
enterprise in developing new mission-derived technologies
Improving business and engineering processes can
dramatically affect the cost, quality and development time of
complex technological systems. Collaborative engineering
systems developed at the ATC integrate data and models
from a variety of sources—including design, engineering,
manufacturing and logistics—into systems that enable
program teams to optimize their decision-making process.
We are pioneering ways to perform large-scale system
trades using common engineering tools for a wide range of
customer problems. These solutions can then be applied to
program management decision-making processes.
Advanced Modeling Tools
We build modeling and simulation frameworks that are used
end to end from sensing to decision-making to process
refinement and what-if analysis.
Our expertise in architecting software for space
applications, from business development concepts through
flight software and across the range of sensors and
processors, enables us to field advanced software and
modeling tools for use across the enterprise. We are
fielding advanced software technology for generating
models from specifications, establishing workflow
approaches for service-oriented architectures and
deploying reusable simulation frameworks for missile
defense studies
One example is our commercially licensed software for
connecting the Phoenix ModelCenter Optimization software
with STK. Phoenix Integration licenses the technology that
links STK and ModelCenter from Lockheed Martin.
Lockheed Martin’s ATC developed the connection with a
Java “wrapper.” This wrapper queries Satellite Tool Kit
(STK) using the STK/Connect interface for design and
output variables, then maps the parameters into
ModelCenter. Trade study tools in ModelCenter enable the
system designer to perform parametric studies, design of
experiments, carpet plot analysis and optimization studies.
Optimized Decision-Making
Optimization is a search through thousands of options
across many performance variables. At left is a plot showing
significant cost savings with optimized options in blue versus
manually selected options in red. Above is a 3D
spreadsheet with subset of the system options plotted on
more than twelve performance dimensions.
Modeling, Simulation and Information Science
Option Cost ($M/yr)
Program Value (PV)
400 500
Original Data
Pareto Front
Tool integration and multidisciplinary
optimization enable rapid formation and
exploration of tradespaces to perform integrated
engineering analysis and gain greater insight
into better design options.
Space Sciences and Instrumentation
Our Sun
The Yohkoh Solar X-ray Telescope sees the Sun
in X-ray wavelengths.
Examining Our Place
in Space, from the
Sun’s Interior, to the
Earth’s Magnetosphere,
to the Edge of the
Heliosphere…and Beyond
The Sun and the heliosphere that surrounds it present
an ever-changing space environment to the Earth and
other planets in the solar system. Understanding the
Sun’s variability and its effects on planetary space
environments contributes to our body of scientific
knowledge and has important practical implications for
day-to-day life on Earth. The ATC continues to be
deeply involved in investigations to understand how
the Sun works and how it affects space weather for
the Earth and other planets.
Scientists, engineers and technologists at the ATC
have conducted research in solar physics, space
physics, astrophysics and earth science for more than
40 years. This research includes the full spectrum of
space science activity: modeling phenomena,
analyzing data acquired in space, defining future
research requirements, designing and building space-
and ground-based instruments and publishing results
derived from these instruments. Our investigations
focus on understanding how and why the Sun’s output
changes, how these changes connect to Earth’s
environment and climate, and what effects these
changes might have on our ability to explore the solar
system. Much of this work is done in collaboration with
several universities, the U.S. government and other
research institutions. We share the results with
scientists around the world.
The ATC’s space sciences effort constitutes an
internal line of business that leverages cutting-edge
research in disciplines such as phenomenology, optics
and sensor design, cryogenics, and pointing and
controls. This line of business builds world-class
space science instruments for NASA, the European
Space Agency, the Japanese Institute of Space and
Astronautical Science (ISAS) and the Japanese
Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).
Space Sciences and Instrumentation
Studying the Sun and Solar System as an Integrated Environment
When studying the complexities of the sun-solar system environment, it is important to look at its operation as an
integrated system. A key aspect of our work in space science is our unique ability to combine scientific expertise
and instrument design capability with Lockheed Martin’s extensive systems engineering knowledge.
ATC research teams collect data on solar and space physics phenomena using a wide variety of tools to examine
everything from functions in the solar interior to the dynamics at work in the farthest reaches of the solar system.
As all of this data accumulates, it can be fused to build a more comprehensive understanding of the complex
physical interactions that drive the Sun and govern its system of planets.
Our expertise has benefited numerous scientific missions. The ATC built the Michelson Doppler Imager (MDI),
flying on the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO), a joint mission of NASA and the European Space
Agency (ESA). We also built the Transition Region and Coronal Explorer (TRACE) instrument, the Toroidal
Imaging Mass-Angle Spectrograph (TIMAS) and the Far Ultraviolet Imaging System (FUV) for NASA’s IMAGE
spacecraft. In addition, we are participating in NASA’s Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) and Terrestrial Planet
Finder missions.
Solar Mosaic
This full-disk view of the Sun was created
from multiple views captured by the
TRACE instrument. TRACE views the
Sun in ultraviolet and extreme ultraviolet
wavelengths, providing detailed images of
the magnetic activity taking place in the
transition region just above the solar
Solar Storm
Severe magnetic disturbances on the Sun
can result in solar flares and ejection of tons
of solar matter into space. This LASCO
image shows a large coronal mass ejection.
The ejected material became part of the solar
wind that flows out from the Sun at very high
speeds and interacts with other bodies in the
solar system, including Earth.
Solar Rotation
MDI measurements enabled scientists to
deduce varying speeds of rotation inside
the Sun. Colors represent the difference
in speed: red-yellow is faster than
average and blue is slower than average.
Sunspots, caused by disturbances in the
solar magnetic field, tend to form at the
edge of these bands.
Scientists derived this image of energetic
particle flux measured in Earth’s
magnetosphere from data gathered by
TIMAS. The spectrograph contributes to
our understanding of the effect of the solar
Captured by the FUV aboard NASA’s IMAGE
spacecraft, this image shows Earth’s
northern aurora during a major geomagnetic
storm. The storm was triggered by a fast-
moving coronal mass ejection that entered
Earth’s magnetosphere at a speed of three
million miles per hour. Such storms can
disrupt terrestrial communications systems
and damage space-based systems.
The Edge of the Solar System
NASA’s IBEX mission will determine the
global nature of the heliopause, where the
solar wind interacts with the interstellar
medium. These images show predictions
for strong (top) and weak (bottom) terminal
shock interactions. Variations in these
global images will illuminate flow patterns
beyond the terminal shock and provide new
insight into our heliosphere.
Space Sciences and Instrumentation
Courtesy of Stanford University
The Sun Earth Connection Coronal and Heliospheric
Investigation (SECCHI) consists of identical instruments on
each of two spacecraft observing the Sun. SECCHI is part of
the Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (STEREO) mission.
The instrument packages
aboard the NASA Imager for
Global Exploration—the Far
Ultraviolet Imaging System
and the Low Energy
Neutral Atom (LENA)
imager—determine the
response of Earth’s
magnetosphere to variations
in the solar wind.
The Cryogenic Limb Array Etalon Spectrometer
instrument aboard the NASA Upper Atmosphere
Research Satellite measures concentrations of elements
in Earth's atmosphere including carbon dioxide, ozone
and complex fluorocarbons (CFCs).
The Michelson Doppler Imager aboard the
Solar and Heliospheric Observatory measures
intensities, velocities and magnetic field
strengths of material in the solar
photosphere. SOHO is a
cooperative effort
NASA and the
Space Agency
Space Science Instruments
Developed at the ATC
The Solar X-Ray Imager aboard the
Geostationary Operational Environmental
Satellite (GOES) will image the solar corona in
X-rays and continuously monitor events such as
solar flares and coronal mass ejections. The
GOES Program is a joint effort of NASA and the
National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration (NOAA).
NASA’s Transition Region and
Coronal Explorer images the Sun
from the 10,000 K surface
(photosphere) through the
gradually increasing temperature
of the lower atmosphere (transition
region) to the base of its multi-
million K upper atmosphere
As an integral part of space sciences research, the ATC builds premier instruments for astrophysics, solar physics,
space physics, Earth observation and planetary science. Exploiting our core technical capabilities, we build
cutting-edge instruments that expand our understanding of the inner workings of the Sun, the effects of space
weather on the interplanetary environment, the chemistry and dynamics of Earth’s atmosphere, and the
mechanisms at work on other stars. Over the past 40 years, we have flown 164 space instruments, which have
accumulated more than 700 years of combined operation in space.
Space Sciences and Instrumentation
700+ Years of Combined Operation in
Space Represented by 164 Successful Space
Instruments across Four Decades
The Near Infrared Camera
for the James Webb
Space Telescope will
detect and identify the
“first light” objects in the
Tunable Filter
The Solar Optical Universal Polarimeter (SOUP)
Tunable Filter first flew on the Spacelab 2 shuttle
mission in 1985 and has been used for ground-based
observations ever since.
From 1991 to 2002, the
Soft X-ray Telescope took
high-resolution images of
the 6-million-degree solar
corona in X-rays. SXT is
part of the Yohkoh
mission, a joint project of
NASA and the Japanese
Institute of Space and
Astronautial Sciences
Following the orbit of Comet
in 2014, the Rosetta Orbiter
Spectrometer for Ion and
Neutral Analysis aboard ESA’s
Rosetta spacecraft will provide
information about the origin of
our solar system.
The Focal Plane Package
for the Solar Optical
Telescope of the Hinode
mission images the solar
surface (or photosphere)
and overlying chromosphere
with 0.1-arcsecond spatial
Space Sciences and Instrumentation
The Polar Ionospheric X-ray
Imaging Experiment aboard
NASA’s Polar spacecraft images
Earth’s northern and southern
auroral regions in X-rays.
The Lightning Imaging Sensor is
used to detect the distribution of
lightning. LIS has operated
continuously since its launch
aboard the Tropical Rainfall
Measuring Mission (TRMM)
Observatory in 1997.
Predicting the
Behavior of an
Active Sun
Events taking place on the Sun profoundly affect the Earth, influencing everything from changes in our climate to
the operation of our technology, including communication systems, satellite operations and human spaceflight.
Solar activity provides an unparalleled look at fundamental forces at work throughout the universe. Lockheed
Martin applies the ATC’s expertise in this area to address our customers’ practical problems resulting from our
increasing dependence on space-based systems.
For more than 30 years, solar physicists at the ATC have been responsible for defining, designing, building and
flying solar-observing instruments. Working with scientists, universities and government agencies on a global
scale, we have made major contributions to understanding the dynamic interactions taking place on the ever-
changing Sun.
Space Sciences and Instrumentation / Solar and Astrophysics
Heating in the Solar Corona
This series of images traces the
heating effects of the Sun’s
magnetic field by making
observations at different
wavelengths, each showing
emissions at different temperatures.
The dark and light areas of an active
magnetic field (top left) correspond
to different polarities. Dark patches
on the Sun’s surface, shown in
visible wavelengths at about
10,000ºF (top right) are sunspots,
which appear dark because they are
cooler, approximately 6,000ºF. Note:
The sunspots are clearly aligned
with the active magnetic regions.
Two EUV images (center) and an X-
ray image (bottom) show the
dramatic heating at increasingly
higher levels of the solar atmosphere
directly above the active magnetic
regions. Emissions are at 50,000ºF,
4,000,000ºF and 10,000,000ºF,
respectively. The image in the
bottom left shows an overlay of
three atmospheric layers from
2,000,000 to 6,000,000°F.
Observations across the Spectrum
The Solar and Astrophysics Laboratory builds
unique instruments to reveal, measure and
predict solar activity. These devices have
flown on numerous high-profile spacecraft,
including the NASA STEREO and TRACE
missions, the ESA SOHO mission and
Japanese YOHKOH and HINODE missions.
Our scientists and engineers specialize in
telescopes, filters and high-resolution
cameras to image the Sun in visible, ultra-
violet and x-ray wavelengths. In the visible
bands, these instruments—such as the MDI
on the SOHO spacecraft—include very-high-
wavelength resolution techniques to measure
solar magnetic fields and solar oscillations.
Applying techniques like those used to
analyze earthquakes, we can probe the Sun’s
interior structure.
Cameras built to image in the extreme
ultraviolet region (such as SECCHI and
TRACE) and X-ray band (SXT and SXI)
provide detailed information on the structure
and formation of the solar corona and are
used to monitor solar activity. In the shorter
EUV and X-ray wavelength bands, the output
of the sun changes dramatically over the
11-year sunspot cycle. These instruments
open a window onto the complex events
occurring in the solar atmosphere throughout
this cycle and offer insight into the
mechanisms behind these events.
The SECCHI telescopes on STEREO allow a
three-dimensional view of the solar
atmosphere and associated solar wind
propagating into the solar system. The FPP of
Japan’s Hinode mission investigates regions
of the solar surface with high accuracy while
the Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) of
NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO)
will explore the atmosphere of the entire Sun
on the same scale. SDO will also carry the
Helioseismic Magnetic Imager (HMI), adding
to the helioseismic database of SOHO/MDI.
Astrophysics researchers at the ATC also
study variations in the activity of other stars.
The results of these studies help us to better
understand and, perhaps, to predict the
variation in activity on our Sun.
Space Sciences and Instrumentation / Solar and Astrophysics
Transition Region and Coronal Explorer (TRACE)
The TRACE Instrument
Millions of images of the solar
atmosphere from the TRACE
telescope have given us the first
detailed images of magnetic
reconnection, an energy release
mechanism believed to be
important at the Sun, near Earth
and in a wide variety of other
astrophysical conditions.
Tracking the Source of Plasma Jets
Using the Lockheed Martin Tunable Filter
to focus on specific Doppler-shifted
frequencies, the Swedish 1-meter solar
telescope took images of plasma jets on
the solar surface. “Blue-shifted” emissions
(left) indicate plasma jets (dark areas)
moving toward us at approximately 30,000
miles per hour. This image was part of a
recent research effort that discovered a
strong correlation between periodic sound
waves occurring at the solar surface and
the incidence of the plasma jets.
Tunable Filter
Three-Dimensional Sun
Twin telescopes aboard NASA’s Solar Terrestrial Observatory
(STEREO) image the Sun in four ultraviolet wavelengths. The
telescopes are aboard two spacecraft positioned on either side
of the Earth: one preceding and the other trailing the planet in
orbit around the Sun. The distance between the two spacecraft
allows a stereo view of our star. The two images are from each
of the SECCHI telescopes.
Solar Photosphere
Sunspots appear dark in the
solar photosphere, as shown in
this image taken by the Focal
Plane Package of the Solar
Optical Telescope aboard the
Hinode mission. Magnetic
activity causes the region to be
cooler, therefore darker, than
its surroundings.
Focal Plane Package
Sun Earth Connection Coronal
Heliospheric Investigation (SECCHI)
Space Sciences and Instrumentation / Solar and Astrophysics
X-Ray Radiance Variation
These SXT images show how the violently hot solar corona varies
during the Sun’s 11-year activity cycle. High activity occurred in
September 1991 (left) near solar maximum. Lower magnetic activity
occurred in 1995 (right) when the solar cycle was near its minimum.
Michelson Doppler Imager (MDI)
Orbiting the Sun aboard SOHO, the MDI instrument uses
visible imaging with very-high-wavelength resolution to
measure oscillations on the solar surface that yield
insight into solar activity and interior structure.
SOHO Spacecraft
Launched in 1995, SOHO observes the Sun
continuously from its orbit at the L1 Lagrangian Point,
1.5 million kilometers from Earth. MDI is one of several
European- and American-built instruments on board.
Magnetic Map
An MDI observation of the solar
surface shows an active region
surrounding a large sunspot group
in the southern hemisphere.
Red and blue represent the
two polarities in the solar
magnetic field.
Space Sciences and Instrumentation / Solar and Astrophysics
Yohkoh/Soft X-Ray Telescope (SXT)
Operating for most of the 1990s aboard the
Japanese Yohkoh satellite, the Soft X-Ray
Telescope provided high temporal and spatial
resolution X-ray images of the Sun’s 6-million-
degree corona. The instrument used a glancing
incidence telescope of 1.54-m focal length, which
forms X-ray images in the 0.25 to 4.0 keV range on
a 1024 x 1024 virtual phase CCD detector.
Yohkoh was the first solar mission launched by the
Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). It
gave unprecedented information about the Sun’s
upper atmosphere. The ATC built the Focal Plane
Package that is currently operating aboard the
second solar mission, Hinode, launched in 2006.
SXT X-Ray Radiance with the Solar Cycle
92 93 94 95
Computer Simulations
Understanding the solar dynamo and the propagation of material and
energy through the convection zone below the solar surface helps
scientists predict short-term solar activity and investigate long-term
effects of the Sun on our climate.
Computer Model
A model of the heliosphere, calculated from MDI data, is used
to forecast the effects of solar activity on spacecraft and
astronauts in orbit.
Our space instrumentation effort includes the
development of high-speed, low-noise, low-power CCD
focal planes that have been successfully deployed in
several space-based imaging systems. This work also
includes the development of analog and digital
electronics for a variety of spaceflight applications.
Space environment studies include mission development
and design, observations and modeling, and research to
understand and mitigate the potential hazards in the
space environment to humans and other space assets.
Space physicists at the ATC have a long history of
building and flying instruments for missions to examine a
wide range of Sun-Earth interactions.
While conducting atmospheric physics research, our
scientists, engineers and technologists design and
develop infrared remote sensing instrumentation with
high spectral resolution to determine atmospheric
chemistry and dynamics. The primary focus of this work
has been to understand the response of the stratosphere
and upper troposphere to various factors, including those
associated with manmade effects such as the Antarctic
ozone hole and the role of chlorofluorocarbons.
Lightning Imaging Sensor (LIS)
This space-based science instrument detects the distribution and
variability of total lightning—cloud-to-cloud, intra-cloud and cloud-to-
ground—in tropical regions of the globe. It has operated
continuously since its launch aboard NASA’s Tropical Rainfall
Measurement Mission observatory in 1997.
LIS consists of a staring imager optimized to locate and detect
lightning with storm-scale resolution (4 to 7 km) over a large region
(600 x 600 km) of the Earth’s surface. The instrument records the
time of occurrence, measures the radiant energy and determines
the location of lightning events within its field of view (FOV).
Studying Earth from
Platforms in Space
Space physicists at the ATC study the space
radiation and plasma environment, space weather
and activity in the Earth’s atmosphere. Data from
their instruments helps other scientists build a
comprehensive picture of the dynamic forces at
work in our protective atmosphere and magnetic
field and how these forces may impact life on Earth.
In addition, our space instrumentation work
provides key support to several Lockheed Martin
lines of business and enabling technologies to new
programs ranging from missile defense applications
to deep space research missions.
We focus on research and development in three
core areas:
• Space instrumentation
• Space environment
• Atmospheric physics
Space Sciences and Instrumentation / Space Physics
-150 -120 -90 -60 -30 0 30 60 90 120 150
-150 -120 -90 -60 -30 0 30 60 90 120 150
Detecting Lightning
LIS uses a wide-FOV expanded optics
lens with a narrowband filter in
conjunction with a high-speed charge-
coupled device detection array.
A realtime event processor inside the
electronics unit determines when a
lightning flash occurs, even in the
presence of bright sunlit clouds. The
color scale shows the rate of lightning
flashes. Red indicates the greatest
number of lighting flashes and blue
indicates the fewest.
Flux Photons / (cm-sr-s)
Auroral Storm
This sequence of images from the Wideband Imaging Camera (WIC)
on the IMAGE spacecraft shows the development of an auroral storm
over the period of one hour on Oct. 29, 2003. The storm was initiated
by a large coronal mass ejection from the Sun. The auroral oval
increased in size and became brighter during the storm. Auroras were
visible from Colorado, California and other mid-latitude locations in the
continental United States.
Imager for Magnetopause to Aurora Global
Exploration (IMAGE)
NASA’s IMAGE satellite images the Earth’s
magnetosphere and aurora. It has produced global
images of the effects of space weather on the near-Earth
space environment and upper atmosphere.
The ATC helped develop and build two instruments on
IMAGE: the Far UltraViolet imager of the Wideband
Imaging Camera and the Low Energy Neutral Atom
(LENA) detector.
Antarctic Ozone Depletion
These images, from an altitude of about
20 km over the South Pole, show that in the
very cold temperatures inside the Antarctic
vortex, chlorine nitrate (ClONO
), a
normally inactive form of chlorine, is greatly
depleted, indicating that it has been
converted to active forms of chlorine, which
catalytically destroy ozone.
In addition, nitric acid (HNO
) also has
been depleted, another important factor in
rapid ozone loss. In the central image,
ozone is depleted inside the vortex
coincident with the regions of cold
temperature and photochemically
conditioned air. A primary source of the
chlorine for both active and inactive forms
is the chlorofluorocarbon 12 (CFC12) that is
shown to be present throughout the polar
vortex. Together, these measurements
contributed to compelling evidence for the
definitive link between manmade CFCs and
ozone destruction.
Cryogenic Limb Array Etalon Spectrometer (CLAES)
Launched aboard the Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite
(UARS), CLAES provided the first global, annual cycle view of many
critical photochemical processes involved in the formation of the
ozone hole in the Antarctic spring.
The Polar Ionospheric X-Ray Imaging
Experiment (PIXIE)
Launched on the Polar spacecraft in 1996, PIXIE
provided the first global images of the precipitating
energetic electrons, thereby revealing the electron
spectra, energy inputs into the upper atmosphere
and the resulting ionospheric electron densities and
electrical conductivities. Scientists used these
images to determine properties of the upper
atmosphere and ionosphere during “regular” space
weather intervals and during severe space storms.
Auroral X-rays
PIXIE, a multiple-pinhole camera designed to image an entire
auroral region in X-rays from extremely high altitude, measured
the spatial distribution and temporal variation of auroral X-ray
emissions in the 2 to 60 keV energy range on both the day and
night sides of Earth. The color scale indicates total X-ray
intensity from 2 to 12 keV.
Space Sciences and Instrumentation / Space Physics
H+ Energy
Polar / Timas: 08 Sep 1997
H+ Energy
Polar / Timas: 25 Mar 1996
Cusp/Plasma Entry
Observations of solar wind ions penetrating the
northern magnetosphere are used to understand the
processes occurring at the magnetopause. Changes in
energy provide information on the processes that allow
solar wind ion entry.
Magnetospheric Transport
Looking Beyond the
Near-Earth Environment
TIMAS Instrument
The TIMAS instrument measures the full three-
dimensional velocity distribution functions of all
major magnetospheric ion species. It is a first-
order double-focusing imaging spectrograph that
simultaneously measures all mass per charge
components from 1 atomic mass unit (AMU/e) to
greater than 32 AMU/e over a nearly 360-degree
by 10-degree instantaneous field of view.
Toroidal Imaging Mass-Angle Spectrograph
NASA’s Polar mission has played an integral part in
advancing our understanding of energy and momentum
transfer across the magnetopause and of electrodynamic
coupling within the magnetosphere-ionosphere system.
TIMAS was launched in 1996 aboard the Polar
spacecraft into a highly elliptical, highly inclined orbit.
The instrument measures the full three-dimensional
velocity distribution functions of all major
magnetosphere ion species.
A Protective Barrier
Earth’s magnetic field forms a protective barrier
around the planet, deflecting many of the high-
speed charged particles contained in the solar
wind. The boundary layer of this protective barrier
is the magnetopause.
Results from these investigations yield new insights
into how the Sun, heliosphere and planetary
environments are connected as a single system,
how this system may have enabled the formation
and evolution of life, and how it may affect life
conditions in the future.
The ATC’s space physicists also focus on interplanetary
space and the environments of other planets and
comets. We are actively engaged in research that
examines physical dynamics occurring beyond Earth’s
atmosphere—ranging from the interactions between
Earth’s magnetosphere and the solar wind to the physics
that underlies the interstellar boundary at the extreme
edges of the Sun’s influence.
Our researchers design and build instruments that help
shed new light on the forces at work in our solar system.
Space Sciences and Instrumentation / Space Physics
European Space Agency’s
Rosetta Spacecraft
The Rosetta Orbiter Spectrometer for Ion and Neutral Analysis (ROSINA)
ROSINA is an ion mass spectrometer launched aboard the European Space Agency’s Rosetta spacecraft.
Rosetta’s mission is to rendezvous with Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko in 2014. Once there, ROSINA will
analyze the comet’s atmosphere—data that will yield important insights into the formation and evolution of comets
and the similarity between cometary and interstellar material present at the birth of the solar system. The
spectrometer also will carbon date the comet’s nucleus to help determine the composition of the interstellar
medium that formed our Sun.
Bow Shock
Termination Shock
Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX)
How does the Sun’s heliosphere interact with the
interstellar medium? There have been no direct
measurements of the complex interactions taking place
at the farthest reaches of the solar system. IBEX, a
NASA Small Explorer mission, will change that. This
mission is designed to map the activity of plasma and
energetic particles at the interstellar boundary beyond
the Termination Shock, where the solar wind slows to
subsonic speed and meets the gas, dust and radiation
environment between the stars. The IBEX spacecraft will
be launched in 2008 and will fly in a highly elliptical orbit
far outside the Earth’s magnetosphere.
A team led by ATC scientists and engineers is designing
and building the IBEX-Lo sensor. It is one of two sensors
that will take all-sky images from inside the bubble of the
heliosphere, measuring the number of energetic neutral
atoms at different energy levels arriving from interstellar
space. These measurements will determine many of the
properties of the heliosphere-interstellar boundary.
The heliosphere is the region of space inflated by the Sun’s solar
wind. As the Sun moves through space, a shock wave forms
where the heliosphere collides with the interstellar medium.
IBEX-Lo Cross Section
The IBEX-Lo sensor will measure neutral atoms created by the interaction of the solar wind
and the interstellar medium. The sensor has a large annular opening to allow neutrals to
enter, a conversion surface to ionize them, and an energy analyzer and mass spectrometer
to measure their energy and mass.
Rendezvous with a Comet
The ATC-designed ROSINA instrument will analyze the composition of the Comet
67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Rosetta image courtesy of European Space Agency
Space Sciences and Instrumentation / Space Physics
Expanding What’s Possible
Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Technology
Center makes new things possible by
pushing the boundaries of technology.
Our scientists, engineers and
technologists endeavor to build systems
that are more capable, smaller, lighter
weight, more reliable, longer lasting or
less costly than ever before. Developing
these emerging technologies—and
applying them to our customers’
missions—requires a specific set of
The ATC seeks to advance the state of
the art in aerospace technology by
utilizing domain expertise in an array of
technical disciplines, in conjunction with a
cooperative interdisciplinary approach, to
address the ongoing needs of our
customers. These technical solutions
provide vital support to national security,
space exploration and environmental
awareness, and make fundamental
contributions to our body of scientific
Mission Solutions
The ATC draws on its heritage, expertise and resources in spacecraft buses, ground systems and test facilities to provide
solutions for both small and large missions. We build instruments as mission systems and supply the total mission
packages—from developing initial concepts to processing the resulting data. As the technology center for Lockheed Martin,
we follow common practices and procedures for a smooth transition between the company and our customers.
• A passion for searching out and
executing innovative solutions
• Profound knowledge of the
fundamental physics that impacts the
task at hand
• Dedication to the successful
completion of the mission
• An understanding of what it takes to
meet business and performance
Advanced Technology Center
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Innovations in technology driven by customer needs
Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Technology Center…
Lockheed Martin
Space Systems Company
Advanced Technology Center
3251 Hanover Street, Palo Alto, CA 94304
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