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Subsurface Communications System for Robotics (DHS002)

Award Information
Agency: Department of Homeland Security
Branch: N/A
Contract: 2011-ST-065-ARP003
Agency Tracking Number: 1 R43 EB014149-01
Amount: $99,998.83
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: PAR-10-279-002
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: 2010
Award Year: 2011
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2011-09-15
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2012-03-14
Small Business Information
5810 South Sossaman Road Suite 108
Mesa, AZ 85212-5825
United States
DUNS: 786521273
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: Unavailable
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: Unavailable
Principal Investigator
 Steven Shope
Business Contact
 Kimberly McGrane
Research Institution

Underground cross-border tunnels of all sizes and shapes are an increasingly important threat
to our National security. Finding cross-border tunnels is a challenging task and once found, an
additional challenge is mapping the entire underground tunnel. Manned entry into these
dangerous underground environments is a risky endeavor. The use of robotics offers a great
improvement over human entry into these tunnels. To function effectively, tunnel robots require
a wireless communications link. This proposal describes a research program to successfully
develop a flexible and highly adaptable electromagnetic (RF) communications link for
underground robotics. The link will be bi-directional and have a range of at least 500 m. What
we are proposing in this proposal is an adaptive parametric signal processing scheme where
the relationship between data rate, communications range, power, covertness, etc. can be
optimized for a given communications link because the underground electromagnetic
propagation environments can greatly vary from site to site. By using a software defined radio
approach this optimization can be user-adjusted or automatically optimized in the field. We call
this method the Parametric Underground Communications System (PUCS). Frequencies will
range from several kHz to several MHz. Data rates will be sufficient to transmit slow scan
imagery. This effort will implement, test and finally conduct a field demonstration of the PUCS
method at a local underground test site.

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

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