SSCI Wins $750,000 Air Force SBIR Contract to Develop Open Source Navigation Framework

October 21, 2009 by  

Program Leverages SSCI Leadership in Developing Intelligent Autonomous Unmanned Systems Technology

WOBURN, MA, Oct. 20, 2009 – Scientific Systems Company, Inc. (SSCI), a leading developer of technology solutions for defense and industrial suppliers, today announced it has been awarded a $750,000 contract from the U.S. Air Force to develop a modular software framework for testing and evaluation of navigation sensors and algorithms. This Small Business Investment Research (SBIR) contract leverages SSCI’s leadership in technology enabling intelligent autonomous land-based and aerial unmanned systems to perform their missions in hostile or challenging environments.

The U.S. Air Force is seeking new precision navigation technologies to augment GPS, with a focus on visual odometry. SSCI will address the need with a testbed to assess multiple combinations of sensor hardware, visual navigation algorithms, and vehicle dynamic models on a level playing field. In addition, the University of Central Florida Computer Vision Laboratory will provide several state-of-the-art egomotion algorithms for initial testing. The resulting technology will enable system integrators to explore the trade space of unmanned vehicles and sensors to achieve a desired level of position and orientation accuracy over various missions.

In order to encourage adoption by sensor manufacturers, the project is being developed in open source format, with code available for download at

According to the government program manager, the technology will be an integral part of the Air Force’s UAV program. Dr. Raman Mehra, Founder & CEO of SSCI, added, “This critical U.S. Air Force development program leverages SSCI’s core competence in sensor, navigation and control technologies in an open-source development environment that will speed the delivery of important new applications.”

SSCI is one of the nation’s top recipients of SBIR contracts. SBIR contracts are designed to stimulate technological innovation and promote the productivity and economic growth of the nation by engaging private enterprise in productive innovation projects for the U.S. government.

About Scientific Systems Company, Inc.

Scientific Systems Company, Inc. (SSCI) pioneers products and technologies that provide the intelligence for unmanned ground, air and maritime vehicles to autonomously and collaboratively accomplish missions in difficult environments. A leading developer of technology solutions for defense and industrial suppliers, SSCI is one of the top 20 recipients of Small Business Innovation Research awards in the U.S. and is recognized by the U.S. Navy and Army for its record of successful technology transitions. A privately held company based in Massachusetts, SSCI collaborates with a network of defense industry prime contractors and consultants, drawing on an accumulated investment of over $150 million in advanced research and development funding.

Greg Moeller
(781) 933-5355 x295


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