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Low-Latency Optical Backbone Networks for Army Aviation

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Army
Contract: W58RGZ-21-C-0029
Agency Tracking Number: A2-8338
Amount: $549,983.15
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: A18-003
Solicitation Number: 18.1
Solicitation Year: 2018
Award Year: 2020
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2020-07-09
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2022-09-10
Small Business Information
41 Aero Camino
Goleta, CA 93117-3104
United States
DUNS: 191741292
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Leif Johansson
 (805) 967-4900
Business Contact
 Milan Mashanovitch
Phone: (805) 967-4900
Research Institution

With increasing sensor complexity and numbers in DoD systems, demand for low latency, high capacity communications links are increasing.  Fiber optic communications can provide a long-term solution, using such techniques as Wavelength Division Multiplexing (WDM) to provide a number of high-speed digital and wide-band analog information channels over physical fiber paths.  Rotorcraft avionic conditions present a challenging environment for the implementation of optical communications technologies.  In this program, Freedom Photonics is leading a strong team developing an innovative avionic optical network architecture and signal transfer schemes capable of supporting fiber optic interfaces and specifications for rotary aircraft environments. The architecture is based on a proprietary wavelength selective switch fabric, as well as high-performance fast-tunable optical transceivers, and network layer management hardware and software. This will yield a low CSWaP, high-performance solution for Army’s applications.  The architecture support transmission of both analog and digital optical signals. This implementation provides the basis for a lightweight, highly reliable fiber-optic network architecture scalable to 200 nodes.  Redundancy and survivability are significantly enhanced by employing redundant network hubs at different locations within the aircraft. Based on the switch fabric design, this network architecture naturally supports many simultaneous point-to-point connections, each of which can be upwards of 100 Gb/s for digital signals and >100 GHz for analog signals, limited by the transceiver technology. As many avionics legacy systems currently use point-to-point wiring, this architecture provides an evolutionary path from old connectivity solutions to new ones, while being future proof and supporting bandwidth upgrades.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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