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Conformal Antennas for Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS)

Award Information

Department of Defense
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2011 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Applied EM Inc.
100 Exploration Way, Suite 300 Hampton, VA -
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2011
Title: Conformal Antennas for Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS)
Agency: DOD
Contract: FA8650-11-M-1139
Award Amount: $99,987.00


Combined with the demands for UASs is the increasing demand for additional electronic systems, payload carrying capacity, and antennas that are required for each electronic/communication system on the platforms. Broadband conformal antennas offer unique solutions to the strict size weight and power requirements for sensors deployed on UAS. Multi-functional conformal antennas can also address the issue of antenna locations that arise from limited real estate. Typical UAV telemetry systems operating at UHF or L-band frequencies usually employ blade and wire antennas on the fuselage and protrude into the air stream. These antennas degrade aerodynamics, increase drag, increase weight, and usually provide less than optimal antenna performance. These problems can be largely eliminated by conformal (and/or embedded) antennas into UAV composite structures. This antenna research will develop; (a) advanced conformal, low profile and wide bandwidth antennas and (b) apply innovative"paint-on"manufacturing methods to apply conformal antenna (and EMI ground plane shielding) designs directly onto the"skin"of flight platforms. These combined technology developments will provide unique solutions by reducing the profile size and weight of UAS antennas and will also address the issue of antenna locations and (real estate) conflicts through the use of EM simulation and modeling. BENEFIT: Improved UAS conformal antennas for satellite communications, sensors, and COMINT and SIGINT mission applications.Innovations developed under this topic will benefit both DoD and commercial programs. Possible uses for these products include commercial aerospace, automotive, and communications industries.

Principal Investigator:

Thomas Campbell
Program Manager
(757) 224-2035

Business Contact:

C. J. Reddy
(757) 224-2035
Small Business Information at Submission:

Applied EM Inc.
144 Research Drive Hampton, VA -

EIN/Tax ID: 382962539
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: Yes
HUBZone-Owned: No