Antenna Design for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles
Agency / Branch:
DOD / USAF
ABSTRACT: US Warfighters seek high data (>1 Mbps) satellite communications (SATCOM) with as much operational mobility as their weapon systems. This SBIR topic seeks innovative antenna designs for unmanned aerial vehicles that are robust enough to adapt to the multiple missions a Predator class (or larger) UAV may encounter in theater, are compatible with the outline and mounting (i.e.light weight and low-profile) of such aircraft, and are capable of supporting high data rate SATCOM at Ku and/or Ka-bands at both military and commercial frequencies. Under Phase I of this SBIR topic, ThinKom proposes to conduct a trade of our in-development commercial CTS and VICTS-based Ka and Ku SATCOM COTM antenna products, including the pointing and stabilization system, against the unique packaging, environmental, and system requirements of military aero UAV"s, including the link requirements associated with the Ku & Ka military & commercial bands, to define the modifications/upgrades necessary to support such aero UAV applications. Preliminary RF, mechanical, and tracking designs, and installation concepts for each system approach shall be provided so that an informed down-select can be made for a subsequent detailed design and fabrication effort to be conducted in Phase II. BENEFIT: ThinKom"s CTS and VICTS technologies have considerable SWAP advantages over ESA architectures and are much more conformal than dish-based systems. ThinKom has already realized VICTS antennas at C, X, Ku, Ka, and W bands, and has recently developed EHF VICTS antennas. ThinKom has also realized CTS flat plate antennas at X, Ku, Ka and EHF bands. Further, ThinKom, alone and in cooperation with various partners, is developing various SATCOM COTM antenna systems, including pointing and stabilization subsystems, for ground and airborne applications. Current and potential uses of both VICTS and CTS antenna technology plus the associated pointing and stabilization implementations, include affordable/high-performance satellite communication on-the-move (SOTM) as well as radar and sensor applications in both the military and commercial marketplaces.
Small Business Information at Submission:
ThinKom Solutions, Inc.
20000 Mariner Ave, Suite 500 Torrance, CA -
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