SRI International’s CMOS Imager aboard the Parker Solar Probe Mission Selected as an Edison Award Finalist

Global nonprofit research center recognized for shaping the aerospace flight technology industry

MENLO PARK, CA, March 02, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- SRI International today announced that they were recognized as an Edison Award finalist in the Aerospace Innovation category for their contributions to NASA’s Solar Probe Plus Mission.  

Each year, the Edison Award acknowledges companies with exemplary performance and innovation in the rapidly evolving market of Aerospace Flight Technology. Products and services were submitted that impact the technology and industry concerned with diverse fields including space vehicles, propulsion systems, communications and sensors, habitats, sustainable ecologies, recycling and waste management, agriculture, biological and health sciences, nanotechnology, smart materials, alternative energy, resource extraction, manufacturing and construction and more

“We are honored to be recognized as an Edison Awards finalists for our efforts in the Aerospace industry,” says Manish Kothari, President at SRI International. “The inclusion of our imager on the Parker Solar Probe Mission will bring a lasting impact to our society by capturing the closest images of the sun that will allow us to study the sun’s corona like never before.”

SRI International's technological contribution to the Wide-Field Imager for Solar Probe Plus (WISPR) for NASA's Parker Solar Probe mission assists scientists in assessing and forecasting space weather events that cause dramatic effects on communications, power and other essential technologies. CMOS Imagers are used in everyday life. In fact, anyone with a smartphone most likely has a CMOS imager in the palm of their hand. SRI's CMOS imager is different, having been developed with larger pixels to capture more light and to withstand the radiation environment of space. The hardened CMOS imager is able to withstand radiation exposure of greater than 100kRad, unlike its smartphone counterpart, and enables scientists to capture the closest images off the sun in human history. 

The CMOS Imager used in the Parker Solar Probe was designed by Jim Janesick of SRI, a leading expert in CCD and CMOS development. The technology was conceptualized with extraterrestrial applications in mind and was supported by the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL). SRI and the NRL collaborated to create a 2k x 2k Imager that could withstand the radiation emitted by the sun, which was then selected by NASA for inclusion on the Parker Solar Probe mission, among others, where it will capture the closest images of the sun. 

SRI's CMOS technology impacts society as a whole by enabling scientists to study and discover more about the sun's corona. While essential to life, many of the sun's mysteries are still unknown, and the inclusion of SRI's imager is helping to demystify that by helping scientists understand and forecast solar weather events. This new technology has the potential to foster further innovation around solar weather events, like preventative or protective technologies to protect Earth's infrastructure against solar disruptions.

To learn more about SRI’s imager aboard the Parker Solar Probe click here

A full list of finalists will be posted soon on the Edison Awards website:

About SRI International

SRI International is an independent, nonprofit research center that works with clients to take the most

advanced R&D from the laboratory to the marketplace. SRI is headquartered at Menlo Park, California, USA. Serving government and industry, they collaborate across technical and scientific disciplines to generate real innovation and create high value for clients. They invent solutions that solve the most challenging problems today and look ahead to the needs of the future. For more than 70 years, SRI has led the discovery and design of ground-breaking products, technologies, and industries – from Siri and online banking to medical ultrasound, cancer treatments, and much more


NASA rendition of the Parker Solar Probe (PSP) satellite Picture of the Milkyway galaxy from the SRI imager aboard the PSP

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