QWIP


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Caption: With the acquisition of facilities and technology developments in InSb from Sagem, QWIP and In GaAs from Thales though an agreement signed last December, Sofradir reinforced its leading market position not only in Europe but also at global level.
The US Army Research Laboratory's Advanced Sensors Collaborative Research Alliance in co-operation with the Night Vision and Electronic Sensors Directorate has developed a dual-band infrared (IR) focal plane array based on Qwip technology and tested this as a possible method of detecting buried land mines.
The most straightforward approach uses stacked detector layers with different spectral responses--demonstrated with mercury cadmium telluride and Qwip (Quantum Well Infrared Photoconductor) detector arrays.
These versatile cameras utilize InGaAs, InSb, QWIP and microbolometer sensors and cover the entire infrared spectrum, near-, midwave-, and longwave-IR.
Based on the Qwip technology (see full technical description in Armada 5/2001, page 36) applied to the latest night-sight developed for the Bill anti-armour weapon, this compact camera is being considered for equipping Swedish Army CV90 vehicles destined to take part in international operations.
A third application of Qwip technology is a joint Swedish-Norwegian tripod-mounted observation system that incorporates a Simrad LP-10 target locator and a Leica light goniometer, and for which an evaluation is underway (a Diehl M11-7 goniometer is also being considered).
Since the technique was recently introduced into the new Birc night sight for the Bill missile, Armada asked SaabTech Electronics to explain the Qwip principle on which the Swedish firm had been working since the early 1990s as part of a Swedish research project.
In this Qwip, the material is alternating gallium arsenide (GaAs) and aluminium gallium arsenide (AIGaAs) and photons in the long wave thermal IR-range can be absorbed.
The Ultraforce II features QWIP (Quantum Well Infrared Photodetector) imaging technology, which provides the system with a detector sensitivity of 20 mK (0.02 [degrees] C).
Designated Bite, the sight uses a quantum well infrared photodetector (Qwip)-based fixed detector array.