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Mobile Objective Vehicle Emulator (MOVE)

Description:

OUSD (R&E) CRITICAL TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Integrated Sensing and Cyber

 

OBJECTIVE: DTRA seeks innovative approaches to develop an agile, scalable, all-electric vehicle emulator to enable Counter-WMD sensing techniques using non-line-of-sight Seismic, Acoustic, and Magnetic phenomenologies. The emulator shall be all-electric, scalable, and capable of replicating the Seismic, Acoustic, and Magnetic signatures of various sized vehicle classes for both near-field and far-field MASINT sensor testing. The selected proposal winners will be provided with recorded Seismic, Acoustic, and Magnetic data from three different source-vehicle types to help with the Phase I design and engineering phase. The vehicle data will be of a standard passenger vehicle, a medium-sized truck, and a very large, over 40-ton class wheeled vehicle. The Phase II objective demonstration is of an all-electric test vehicle that is able to traverse a straight tunnel at speeds up to 15 mph while transmitting a simultaneous combination of the source-vehicle Acoustic, Magnetic, and Seismic signatures for a sustained period of at least 10 minutes while moving back and forth underground.

 

Additionally, a variation of this capability would enable a novel magnetic transmitter/receiver pair where the transmitter can be located inside a tunnel and a receiver can be located outside and above the tunnel at ranges of 100 meters or more. The magnetic vehicle emulator, acting as a signal transmitter, shall be able to modulate a unique bit sequence that can be demodulated at a magnetic receiver to uniquely identify or “fingerprint” the signal. Both the transmitter and receiver are to be all-electric, capable of using new/novel renewable energy generation and storage techniques. Performers may choose to create Phase II/III prototypes that use the magnetic simulator signals to create and demonstrate this transmitter/receiver concept. Phase III commercialization opportunities include future applications of modular/scalable all-electric testbeds for self-driving vehicles, city/county traffic management, and logistics delivery tracking services. 

 

DESCRIPTION: The Department of Defense (DOD) and Intelligence Communities require a multitude of target vehicles for Counter-WMD tests and operational exercises. Acquiring real vehicles can be difficult, cost prohibitive, and slow. Contractors can design and build realistic vehicle simulators but that will be expensive and a lengthy process. The cost for logistics, operation, maintenance, and sustainment of large vehicles is also steep. A mobile, all-electric vehicle emulator that can simulate many of the required target vehicle signatures will be cheaper and safer to operate in various environments. An all-electric vehicle emulator will facilitate its use in indoor and underground facilities and produce zero emissions. A scalable, all-electric, multi-phenomenology vehicle emulator will enable an innovative underground sensor testing capability against advanced threats.

 

A novel method is sought to create multi-pole near-field and far-field magnetic signatures that closely replicate actual vehicles that will likely be bounded by the following assumptions. The system may require a gimbaled solenoid to orient the DC magnetic field, and a method to control current strength. 100-200 A/m2 per ton of steel is assumed as a general guide depending on the amount of steel in the vehicle. Smaller vehicles are defined to be 6 tons/axle (single wheeled) or 12 tons/axle (dual wheeled) Department of Transportation (DOT) ratings for roads. For an example design approach, a 500 ft spool of 4-gauge wire (0.25 Ω/1000 ft) with about 42 turns plus some extra wire and about 0.125 Ω, 65 lbs. Eight 42-turn coils (336 total turns) wired in series is 1 Ω to the DC power supply. A 50 V DC power supply could potentially deliver a maximum of 50 A to the coils, producing 16,800 A/m2 using 2.5 kW (30 A, 120 VAC or 20 A, 240 VAC power source). This indicates the challenge is at least feasible for an all-electric replication of signals as follows:

1. Baseline of a small vehicle, 2-ton pickup/SUV (300 A/m2) requires only 893 mA and 893 mV, or 797 mW.

2. Simulating a 10-ton truck (1500 A/m2) requires approximately 4.5 A and 4.5 V, or about 20 W.

3. Simulating a mid-sized 20-ton vehicle (3000 A/m2) requires approximately 8.93 A and 8.93 V, or 80 W.

4. Simulating a large 40-ton vehicle (6000 A/m2) requires approximately 17.86 A and 17.86 V, or about 320 W.

5. Simulating a very large 80-ton vehicle (12,000 A/m2) requires approximately 35.7 A and 35.7 V, or about 1276 W.

 

Lighter wire gauges allow more turns, but give higher resistance, heat, and require higher supply voltages. Additionally, a method of modulating a signal on top of the magnetic simulator to demonstrate communications of a detectable bit sequence over short (tens of meters) distances is desired.

 

PHASE I: Create a proposed design, develop and test an all-electric prototype vehicle emulator which mimics small, medium, and large vehicles with shaped magnetic, acoustic, and seismic phenomenologies using playback of recordings fed into one or more Helmholtz coil or similar magnetic, acoustic, and seismic sources and/or other techniques to replicate within 10% the acoustic and magnetic profile of threat vehicles. A trailer may be used that can be towed by an electric powered vehicle into tree covered tunnels. It is recognized that there can be significant coupling between acoustic and seismic signatures and therefore seismic emulation can be achieved with acoustic sources. Nevertheless, reference material indicates possible approaches to create more accurate vehicle seismic signatures beyond acoustic-only coupling. The all-electric vehicle emulator will allow testing in tunnels too small and too unsafe to house actual full-sized internal combustion engine vehicles of interest. Phase I shall also include applicable electrical and other applicable safety and hazard assessments and proposed risk mitigation as appropriate.

 

PHASE II: Develop and test a scaled down working prototype that emulates the smaller class vehicle type.  After test and evaluation and data analysis, demonstrate a scaled-up version of the prototype to address mid and/or large vehicle emulation objectives. Additionally, a variation of this capability could enable a novel magnetic transmitter/receiver pair where the transmitter can be located inside a tunnel and a receiver can be located outside and above the tunnel. Phase II shall include a design variation proposal that would add modulation to the magnetic vehicle simulator, to modulate a bit sequence that can be demodulated at the receiver to uniquely identify or “fingerprint” the signal. Both the transmitter and receiver are to be all-electric, capable of using new/novel renewable energy generation and storage techniques. Deliver all design and test results in a final Phase II report. The final Phase II report should also include an updated design plan, if needed, to scale the prototype to meet full Phase III requirements.

 

PHASE III DUAL USE APPLICATIONS: Phase III will demonstrate a fully capable all-electric vehicle simulator system within an underground facility. Performers may choose to create Phase III prototypes that use the magnetic simulator signals to create and demonstrate this transmitter/receiver concept. Phase III commercialization opportunities include future applications of modular/scalable all-electric testbeds for self-driving vehicles and city/county traffic management and logistics delivery tracking services. All data collected during the demonstration and analysis of the final system will be included in the final report along with a user’s manual and a data package on all critical system components.

 

REFERENCES:

  1. “FDTD Seismic Simulation of Moving Tracked Vehicle”  Stephen A. Ketcham*, Mark L. Moran*, Roy J. Greenfield, USACE Engineer Research and Development Center, Cold Regions Research and Engineering, Laboratory (ERDC-CRREL), 72 Lyme Rd, Hanover, NH 03755, Stephen.A.Ketcham@erdc.usace.army.mil, Department of Geosciences, Penn State University, University Park, PA 16802, roy@geosc.psu.edu
  2. Moran, M., and Greenfield, R., 1997, “Seismic Detection of Military Operations,” 97-CEP-511-1, U.S.  Army Maneuver Support Battle Laboratory, Ft. Leonard Wood, MO.
  3. IEEE Proceedings of the Users Group Conference (DOD_UGC’04) “Seismic Waves from Light Trucks Moving Over Terrain,”Stephen A. Ketcham Mark L. Moran, and James Lacombe USACE Engineer Research and Development Center, Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (ERDC-CRREL), Hanover, NH {Stephen.A.Ketcham, Mark.L.Moran, James.Lacombe}@erdc.usace.army.mil
  4. “Novel System for Underground Tunnels Detection”  S. Tapuchi and D. Baimel, Shamoon College of Engineering, Beer Sheva, Israel
  5. “Research of Distorted Vehicle Magnetic Signatures- Recognitions, for Length Estimation in Real Traffic Conditions”  Donatas Miklusis, Vytautas Markevicius, Dangirutis Navikas, et. al.
  6. Won, M. “Intelligent Traffic Monitoring Systems for Vehicle Classification: A Survey.”   IEEE Access 2020, 8, 73340–73358. [CrossRef]
  7. Gheorghiu, R.A.; Iordache, V.; Stan, V.A.  “Urban traffic detectors—Comparison between inductive loop and magnetic sensors.”  Proceedings of the 2021 13th International Conference on Electronics, Computers and Artificial Intelligence (ECAI), Pitesti, Romania, 1–3 July 2021; pp. 1–4.
  8. M. Roberson, D. Hull, S.Vinci "Advanced Anomaly Detection," Proceedings of the Military Sensing Symposium (MSS) on Battlespace Acoustic, Seismic, Magnetic, and Electric-Field Sensing (BAMS), October 2022
  9. S. Vinci, Z. Drummond, et. al., "Low-SWaP-C sensing for Battlefield Anomaly Detection," Proceedings of the MSS-BAMS, 2022.
  10. M. Roberson, J. White, D. Hull, S. Vinci, “Extensions to Advanced Anomaly Detection”, Proceedings of the MSS BAMS, November 2023.
  11. “Magnetometer Modeling and Validation for Tracking Metallic Targets,” Niklas Wahlstrom, F. Gustafsson, Published 1 February 2014, IEEE Transactions on Signal Processing, vol 62, pp 545-556
  12. Q. Zhang , et al, “Detection of vehicle tracks by a three-axis magnetometer,” Sensors and Actuators A: Physical, Volume 276, 15 June 2018, Pages 83-90
  13. “Classification of Vehicles Using Magnetic Dipole Model,” Prateek G V, Rajkumar V, Nijil K and K.V.S. Hari, IEEE TENCON 2012, Cebu, Philippines, 21st November 2012

 

KEYWORDS: Seismic, Acoustic, Magnetic Phenomenology; Helmholtz Coil;  Counter WMD (C-WMD); Vehicle Emulator

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