Air Force looks for 'software-defined' spectrum

AIR FORCE Research Lab

WHAT: A broad agency announcement from the Air Force Research Laboratory requesting research and development in support of software-defined radio frequency capabilities.

WHY: The Air Force wants to use advances in software and hardware to make its radio communications more adaptable to a variety of mission environments without sacrificing security.

Software-defined networking, an IT architecture that uses software-based controllers to provide operators with a broad view of a network, is in vogue at the Defense Department. Officials at the Air Force Research Lab's Information Directorate want to apply the concept to radio frequency.

The announcement calls for R&D to further spectrum capabilities "over broad, non-contiguous RF bands." In addition to radio communications, the systems should be able to be reconfigured to support one of a handful of features such as electromagnetic signals detection or cyber activities, according to the Air Force announcement.

The overarching goal of the program is to develop a software-defined radio frequency "ecosystem that includes innovative hardware and software, waveforms and modular components, developer guides, reference designs, and automated tools to accelerate development and reduce costs," the BAA states.

Click here to read the announcement.

Posted by Sean Lyngaas on May 25, 2016 at 12:51 PM


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