The Microwave Ionosphere Reconfiguration Ground-based Emitter (MIRAGE)

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8718-05-C-0042
Agency Tracking Number: F051-028-2848
Amount: $99,953.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2005
Solicitation Year: 2005
Solicitation Topic Code: AF05-028
Solicitation Number: 2005.1
Small Business Information
20 New England Business Center, Andover, MA, 01810
DUNS: 076337877
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 John F Kline
 Principal Research Scientist
 (732) 329-3700
 kline@researchsupport.com
Business Contact
 Christopher Rollins
Title: Vice President
Phone: (301) 306-0010
Email: rollins@researchsupport.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
Research Support Instruments, Inc. (RSI) proposes to develop the Microwave Ionosphere Reconfiguration Ground-based Emitter (MIRAGE). MIRAGE will use a novel combination of an inexpensive, portable microwave transmitter array on the ground and a small chaff-carrying launch vehicle in the air. The goal will be the creation of artificial ionization, either below or within the ionosphere, for a variety of tactical purposes including reflection of signals for over-the-horizon radar or radio transmissions as well as jamming of satellite signals to the ground. The concept will utilize RSI's experience in atmospheric pressure microwave plasmas to produce a mobile solution to future Air Force challenges in radar and radio communications. Microwave power less than that required for breakdown will encounter metal chaff released by the small rocket, triggering formation of a microwave plasma. This plasma can be formed below the natural ionosphere to produce an artificial ionosphere, or modify the natural ionosphere. MIRAGE would fit in mobile trailers and be easily assembled in theater operations. In Phase I, RSI will demonstrate free-space microwave plasma breakdown using metal field enhancement at short range in the laboratory, and use the results to predict scaling and design a large-scale system for Phase II.

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

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