Cryogenic Systems

Infrared electro-optical sensors and imaging system often require cryogenic temperatures for sensor operation and low background performance. SDL has vast expertise designing, fabricating, handling, and testing cryogenic sensor systems, telescopes, and GSE to support high-performance electro-optical sensor performance and testing.


  • Cryogenic systems and radiator design
  • Cryogenic materials selection
  • Thermal isolation systems (S2 glass composites and Kevlar FIST)
  • Cryocooler systems (pulse tube and Stirling cycle)
  • Cryogenic TVAC chamber test facilities
  • Cryogen handling and safety



Orbiting Carbon Observatory-3

NASA’s Orbiting Carbon Observatory-3 (OCO-3) space instrument will investigate carbon dioxide distribution on Earth related to the global carbon cycle.


Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer

The WISE cryogenically-cooled infrared telescope provided a complete stellar infrared map more than 1,000 times more detailed than previous surveys.


Spatial Infrared Imaging Telescope

SPIRIT III was the infrared sensor aboard MDA’s Midcourse Space Experiment (MSX). This long-wave infrared instrumentation package consisted of a high spatial resolution radiometer, a high spectral resolution interferometer-spectrometer, and an extremely high-off-axis-rejection telescope.


Sounding of the Atmosphere using Broadband Emission Radiometry

SABER, a 10-channel infrared (1.27 to 16.9 µm) radiometer, is one of four instruments on NASA's TIMED mission, which is dedicated to study the dynamics of the Mesosphere and Lower Thermosphere (MLT) portion of the Earth's atmosphere.


Geosynchronous Imaging Fourier Transform Spectrometer

GIFTS was successfully tested and calibrated as an engineering demonstration unit to ground-validate technologies critical to NOAA’s Hyperspectral Environmental Suite for the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) system.


Cryogenic Infrared Radiance Instrumentation for Shuttle

CIRRIS-1A’s goal was to obtain simultaneous spectral and spatial measurements of atmospheric emissions, including airglow and auroral phenomenology.


Discriminating Interceptor Technology Program

SDL participated in the DITP effort to develop and demonstrate technologies necessary to enhance and enable interceptor discriminator/seeker systems.