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Conformal Antennas for Improved Signal Intelligence

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8650-13-M-2353
Agency Tracking Number: F131-001-1206
Amount: $149,910.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: AF131-001
Solicitation Number: 2013.1
Solicitation Year: 2013
Award Year: 2013
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2013-06-10
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2014-03-17
Small Business Information
2780 Skypark Drive Suite 400
Torrance, CA -
United States
DUNS: 106823607
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: Yes
Principal Investigator
 Principal Investigator
 (310) 891-2814
Business Contact
 Zoltan Feher
Title: Manager, Contracts and Pricing
Phone: (310) 626-8384
Research Institution

ABSTRACT: Most modern military aircraft (F-22, F-35, B-2 and others) have integrated conformal antennas, resulting in significant system level benefits. On legacy aircraft such as the C-130 and its various versions, incorporation of conformal antennas pose special challenges, since the structural and material designs are fixed and only minimal changes can be made in terms of design modifications and retro-fitting. However the payoffs are significant; in fact the usefulness of older legacy aircraft will be severely limited unless new antennas are included to detect new threats, particular at lower frequencies there is a dire need to develop and implement conformal antennas on aircraft such as the AC/MC-130Js to enable tactical operations. The goal of this SBIR is to develop conformal antennas which can be retrofitted on the AC/MC-130J. The frequency range of interest is 10 MHZ to 6 GHZ. Building on prior designs developed for the Comanche, F-18, and Basset UAVs, in Phase I we will develop structural excited antenna designs, identify potential installation locations, and validate performance by breadboard testing and simulation. In Phase II the design will be matured and performance validated by scale-model testing. Additionally, retrofit costs will be estimated and steps for retrofitting will be defined. BENEFIT: As antenna technology has improved over the years, and there are more sensors and RF signals in the modern battlefield, additional antennas are a necessity for any older aircraft vehicle currently in use. Even for modern variants of legacy vehicles there can be significant improvements in the SIGINT capabilities down to 10 MHz. Use of structural excitation CLAs antennas can provide vehicles the capability to detect, locate, and target threats in a frequency domain not envisioned when the vehicles were built. The proposed antenna elements will provide these capabilities covering both traditional and non-traditional signals of interest with a simple retrofit design, that has the potential to also improve the aerodynamics of the vehicle.

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

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