Munitions Research, "SAR" For AFRL MNG

Period of Performance: 06/26/2003 - 03/26/2004


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

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

Research Topics


AF03-143 (SAR) for AFRL, MNG Branch The US Air Force has a desire to place a SAR seeker on a LOCAAS type munition. The resolution that is sought for full weapon's effectiveness is that currently achieved in UAV SARs and not currently practical or affordable on a munitions platform. One of the key driving requirements is the SAR antenna and processing algorithms. FIRST RF Corporation in conjunction with Dr. Soumekh is proposing an innovative design for both that has the potential to be the enabling technology to reach the Air Force vision of a high resolution low cost SAR. This technology is fully complementary with ongoing SAR efforts at AFRL. Advanced Signal Processing techniques and ever improving signal processors present the opportunity to consider alternate synthetic aperture radar antenna systems, eliminating the need for active electronically scanned or mechanically scanned antenna systems. The focus of this effort is the study and design of antenna systems and associated signal processing for future weapon systems and munitions. The proposed SAR sensor can be configured to process in SAR and Moving Target Indication (MTI) modes, which enables the same sensor to be used for acquiring and tracking, stationary and moving mobile/re-locatable targets. Overall, the benefits of a SAR seeker for a PGM application are clear but the implementation on the munition size platform to date has been the challenge. The desire is for a small size (6" platform), increased resolution, and low cost. The requirement exists for a weapon seeker to have all weather precise targeting and engagement capability. Some current and future weapon systems will loiter in the battlefield or target area in search of specific targets and targets of opportunity. The technology proposed will significantly reduce the cost of current SOA systems. the proposed approach will provide commercial application to GPWS in commercial air safety.