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Next Generation Radar and Electronic Warfare Processing Technology


TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Information Systems

OBJECTIVE: Develop radar and/or electronic warfare (EW) processing technology to include Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) and/or Airborne Electronic Attack (AEA) processing systems for coherent pulsed radio frequency (RF) systems to include new generation non-sinusoidal time-frequency RF waveforms such as wavelets.

DESCRIPTION: A need exists for hardware and software SAR and AEA processing solutions to augment or replace existing airborne processing technology at reduced size, weight, and power (SWaP), and waste heat versus the current state-of-the-art. Current generation commercial digital processor technology recently delivered to the U.S. Navy to perform SAR processing is 0.73 Teraflop, or 1 Trillion Floating Point Operations per Second (TFLOPS) per pound (lb.). This includes 2xCPU’s/4xGPU’s, power supply, cooling system, 256 GB random access memory (RAM), 3.2 TB Serial Advanced Technology Attachment (SATA) disk, motherboard, and interface elements. Development of processing hardware and software system technology may be digital, optical, hybrid optoelectronic, or of neuromorphic computing capability in order to reduce the SWaP, and waste heat versus existing real-time processing solutions.OBJECTIVE: 3.0 TFLOPS per LB; THRESHOLD: 1.5 TFLOPS per LB.The transition goal for this system technology is to reduce the SWaP requirements for air platform integration.In addition to traditional RF waveforms, such as Linear Frequency Modulated (LFM) chirps, Next Generation SAR and AEA processing system technology should include a capability to process non-sinusoidal time-frequency RF signals, or wavelets; or Low Probability of Detection (LPD), Low Probability of Intercept (LPI) waveforms.Work produced in Phase II may become classified. Note: The prospective contractor(s) must be U.S. owned and operated with no foreign influence as defined by DoD 5220.22-M, National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual, unless acceptable mitigating procedures can and have been implemented and approved by the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency (DCSA). The selected contractor and/or subcontractor must be able to acquire and maintain a secret level facility and Personnel Security Clearances, in order to perform on advanced phases of this project as set forth by DCSA and NAVAIR in order to gain access to classified information pertaining to the national defense of the United States and its allies; this will be an inherent requirement. The selected company will be required to safeguard classified material IAW DoD 5220.22-M during the advanced phases of this contract.

PHASE I: Design, develop, and demonstrate feasibility of hardware and software SAR and AEA processing solutions to meet the requirements outlined in the Description. The Phase I effort will include prototype plans to be developed under Phase II. LINUX OS preferred over Windows OS.

PHASE II: Develop a prototype-processing technology. Demonstrate and test that the prototype works toward reduced SWaP form factors for integration to air platforms. Optimize the system design for SAR processing with Phase History Data (PHD) to perform real-time (R/T) image formation for X through UHF-Band SAR and AEA applications. R/T SAR image formation from raw PHD requires is estimated to be .01 TFLOP per Megapixel image at X-Band and 2 TFLOP per Megapixel at UHF-Band.Work in Phase II may become classified. Please see note in the Description section.

PHASE III: Test processing systems within aircraft platforms. Perform early development, test and evaluation flights from non-Navy air platforms to simplify integration and reduce flight hour costs. If resourced, later development, test and evaluation test flights are likely to be conducted from Navy test aircraft, to include new generation of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs).Lightweight systems technology has the potential to bring full performance SAR collection and processing capability to small Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) for support to commercial industry, local governments, and academia such as all-weather terrain mapping, mineral exploration, land use pattern analysis, change detection, and 3-D urban modeling.

KEYWORDS: Synthetic Aperture Radar, SAR, Size, Weight and Power, SWaP, Airborne Electronic Attack, AEA, In-phase and quadrature components, I/Q Processing, Unmanned Aerial Systems, UAS, Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, UAV


1. Adamy, D. “EW 104: Electronic Warfare Against a New Generation of Threats.” Artech House: Boston, 2015. 2. Jakowatz, C., Wahl, D., Eichel, P., Ghiglia, D. & Thompson, P. “Spotlight-Mode Synthetic Aperture Radar: A Signal Processing Approach.” Springer: New York, 1996.

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