AIAA 97-2825, Proceedings of 33rd Joint Propulsion Conference, Seattle, WA, July 1997.


Douglas E. Benner, Member AIAA
David J. Haas
Richard J. Massey
Alan C. Munger
Barry T. Neyer, Member AIAA
EG&G Optoelectronics
Miamisburg, OH 45343-0529

Current Address
Barry T. Neyer
Excelitas Technologies
1100 Vanguard Blvd
Miamisburg, OH 45342
(937) 865-5586
(937) 865-5170 (Fax)


EG&G Optoelectronics has an internally funded R&D Program designed to bring a laser ignited pyrotechnic actuator system to the market place. The design incorporates miniature lenses to efficiently focus the laser light output, from a high power EG&G Optoelectronics InGaAs laser diode, into the explosive powder. The focusing of this light into a small spot causes a rapid temperature rise in the explosive material resulting in device function. The output lens is sealed to the metal shell using DOE developed Glass-Ceramic sealing technology. In addition to providing hermeticity and a high pressure seal, the Glass-Ceramic, lens, metal shell material set presents an "Incompatibility Free" (no solders, glues, etc.) environment for the powder. The powder used in the actuator version of this device is TiH1.65/KClO4 material developed at Sandia National Laboratories and used by the DOE for many years. Ambient threshold tests (conducted on twenty two test devices at a pulse duration of 10 ms) have shown the threshold for this device to be 226 mW with a standard deviation of 12 mW. The actuators have also been successfully fired at -65F and +176F and produce 800 psig into a 10 cc pressure vessel. Included are the results of the development tests as well as the design features of the actuator.

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Technical Papers of Dr. Barry T. Neyer