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BU Photonics Center Deputy Director Dr. Glenn Thoren demonstrated acoustic-driven platform

Boston University : 30 June, 2006  (Technical Article)
The new RedOwl
The RedOwl is a remote, deployable sensor suite designed to provide early warning information, gunshot detection, intelligence, surveillance and targeting capabilities to military forces and government agencies.

Dr. Etter was sworn in as the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition on November 7, 2005. As the Navy's Senior Acquisition Executive, Dr. Etter is responsible for research, development, and acquisition within the Department of the Navy. Dr. Etter was a member of the Electrical Engineering faculty at the United States Naval Academy. She was also the first recipient of the Office of Naval Research Distinguished Chair in Science and Technology.

“Dr. Etter watched the RedOwl pirouette and look directly at a simulated gunshot,” said Thoren. “She was particularly interested in the unique acoustic direction finding system because it is very similar to her research background in biometric signal processing and iris recognition.” The system was developed by Boston University’s Dr. Socrates Deligeorges with Professors Allyn Hubbard and David Mountain at the Hearing Research Center at BU.

“The RedOwl Program embodies the mission of the Photonics Center to work collaboratively on the development of technology that makes a positive contribution to our society,” said Dr. Thomas Bifano, Interim Director of the Photonics Center. “Seeing laboratory research transitioned into a device that saves the lives of our soldiers is enormously gratifying.”

RedOwl is an ongoing rapid development program led by The Photonics Center at Boston University with iRobot, Insight Technology and BioMimetic Systems, a Boston University spinout company. The RedOwl equipped PackBot has been field-tested for the Army’s Rapid Equipping Force at a rifle and trapshooting range. The RedOwl robot also employs a suite of advanced optics including a thermal camera, 300X zoom daylight/infrared camera, infrared laser illuminators, a rangefinder, high intensity white driving light, and voice communication microphones and speakers, all in a package that weighs less than 5 pounds.

The Boston University Photonics Center is dedicated to academic scholarship, entrepreneurial technology development, and innovative educational enrichment in the field of photonics. The Photonics Center houses shared state-of-the-art facilities, including an optical fiber draw tower, an optical processing facility, a sophisticated optical metrology laboratory, and an integrated optoelectronics packaging laboratory.
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