New Imaging Sensor Features the Highest Resolution

Press Release Summary:

The indium gallium arsenide (InGaAs) Near Infrared/Shortwave Infrared (NIR/SWIR) imaging sensor has a 16 megapixel photo-dector array on a 5 micron pitch which provides 16 times more detail information. The sensor is compatible with the RQ-21A payload SWAP envelope and the capabilities include a high coverage rate spectral sensing, a monitoring a wide area continuously, high fidelity inspection sensing, and autonomous identification of objects, behaviors, and materials of interest. 

Original Press Release:

UTC Aerospace Systems Develops World's Highest Resolution SWIR Camera for Office of Naval Research

- New sensor boasts nearly 16 times the resolution of company's current offering and will provide operators with an improved ISR situational awareness capability
- Designed to be compatible with the RQ-21A payload SWAP envelope

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Oct. 31, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Under a contract with the U.S. Office of Naval Research (ONR), UTC Aerospace Systems' Sensors Unlimited business has developed the world's highest resolution indium gallium arsenide (InGaAs) Near Infrared/Shortwave Infrared (NIR/SWIR) imaging sensor. The new sensor includes a 16 megapixel photo-detector array on a 5 micron pitch, providing roughly 16 times more detail than the company's existing high definition sensor, released in 2012, which has a resolution of 1.3 megapixels. UTC Aerospace Systems is a unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX).

The first-of-its-kind sensor is hybridized to a matching silicon CMOS (Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor) read-out integrated circuit and packaged into a hermetically sealed focal plane array. Imaging electronics were also designed and developed to integrate the focal plane array into a complete imaging camera.

Per ONR's requirement, the sensor is compatible with the RQ-21A payload SWAP (Size, Weight and Power) envelope and offers the following capabilities:

  • High coverage rate spectral sensing in the SWIR band
  • Ability to continuously monitor a wide area activity at a resolution (temporal and spatial) consistent with dismount detection/tracking
  • High fidelity inspection sensing in both of the above collection modes
  • Autonomous identification of objects, behaviors and materials of interest with accuracy rates high enough to enable a useful real-time dissemination of information directly to warfighters

UTC Aerospace Systems developed the sensor for the U.S. Navy's Spectral and Reconnaissance Imagery for Tactical Exploitation (SPRITE) program and has delivered four prototypes to the service as part of a 3-year, $9.7 million award.

"Our newest SWIR camera uses groundbreaking technology to provide operators with a higher resolution and greater level of detail than ever before," said Michael Daugherty, Program Manager, UTC Aerospace Systems. "For the warfighter, this means an improved ISR situational awareness capability. We're honored to support the U.S. Navy and look forward to continuing to support the SPRITE program in the years ahead."

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About UTC Aerospace Systems
UTC Aerospace Systems is one of the world's largest suppliers of technologically advanced aerospace and defense products. UTC Aerospace Systems designs, manufactures and services integrated systems and components for the aerospace and defense industries, supporting a global customer base with significant worldwide manufacturing and customer service facilities. For more information about the company, visit our website at or follow us on Twitter: @utcaerosystems

About United Technologies Corporation
United Technologies Corp., based in Farmington, Connecticut, provides high-technology systems and services to the building and aerospace industries. By combining a passion for science with precision engineering, the company is creating smart, sustainable solutions the world needs. For more information about the company, visit our website at or follow us on Twitter: @UTC

SOURCE UTC Aerospace Systems

CONTACT: Al Killeffer, 704-423-7577,

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