Ka-band Spread Spectrum

Period of Performance: 04/27/2012 - 10/26/2012


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

First RF Corp.
5340 Airport Blvd. Array
Boulder, CO 80301
Principal Investigator


SATCOM On-The-Move (OTM) is one of the greatest operational and tactical advantages our troops have. The SATCOM terminals available pose a number of practical constraints resulting in less than universal usage. Traditional reflectors are high profile and difficult to integrate on aircraft and ground vehicles. The ability to maintain link during high-g maneuvers such as travelling over rough terrain or flying through turbulent air is a challenge for these terminals because they rely on mechanically pointing a large dish. Phased arrays are very expensive. An affordable, high gain antenna to close the link is a crucial part of the system. FIRST RF proposes an antenna/modem solution for Ku/Ka Band SATCOM OTM that solves the performance, size and cost problems associated with existing terminals. Our hybrid approach combines the beam agility of an electrically steered antenna with the cost targets of a mechanically steered antenna. Further, the proposed approach spatially integrates out the effects of platform motion on beam pointing ability. The aperture is fed by a novel wideband feed approach which is a key discriminator of this design. During Phase I, we will produce hardware supporting the proposed feed concept, thus eliminating risk and advancing the TRL.