Small Multi-decade Communications and Electronic Warfare (EW) Antenna

Period of Performance: 12/01/2003 - 06/01/2004

$120K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

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

Abstract

The RF bandwidth from 20 MHz to 2000 MHz is of particular interest to the US Army as it encompasses various communications, sensors, and electronic countermeasure systems. Developing a small antenna with 100:1 bandwidth would resolve many problems associated with multiple individual antennas including co-site interference, blockage, and overall real estate availability. The proposed baseline antenna design will provide improvement in size and performance well beyond the stated goals of this solicitation. The baseline approach will provide a lightweight passive antenna that is broadband and non-tunable and will cover frequencies from approximately 20 MHz to 2000 MHz. Reactive tuning techniques will significantly reduce the size of the antenna and innovative antenna apertures will minimize the interaction with vehicle mounts to improve low angle performance. Overall, FIRST RF has an in-depth understanding of the problem and its application. The proposed approach will directly meet the intended requirements of the SBIR program, as well, as being directly applicable to solving current problems in communications and EW antennas. We intend to model and prototype several antenna candidates as part of Phase I, thereby, enabling US Army and contractors to perform evaluation on early units.