Distributed Aperture Radar for Missile Defense

Period of Performance: 07/14/2003 - 01/14/2004


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Technovative Applications
3160 - A Enterprise Street
Brea, CA 92821
Principal Investigator


This SBIR Phase I proposal describes an application of a new radar architecture to reduce the problems associated with deploying large power aperture phased array radars. It is proposed that a radar architecture using distributed aperture, wideband interferometry be evaluated for MDA BMD applications. The distributed architecture addresses the problems of transport, assembly and operation inherent in large aperture applications. The partition of the radar antenna into several apertures allows a larger aperture to be transported. A larger aperture permits less power transmitted per antenna element. The wideband distributed aperture offers advantages in target discrimination, resolution, accuracy, tracking at low elevation angles in turbulent atmospheres, ECCM, clutter and survivability not available to more conventional radars. Unique waveforms and processing offer a reduced interferometric baseline from that required in more conventional interferometers. The radar is able to receive a complete polarization matrix in a single transmission. The proposal is to use analyses and simulation to evaluate a distributed aperture wideband radar interferometer architecture as the basis for a missile defense precision tracking and discrimination radar. The proposal is also to define a scaled development and test program directed towards resolving the technical issues and mitigating risks for a full-scale development. The distributed aperture radar offers advantages in transportability, deployment and a reduction in operating costs where large power-aperture applications are required. Implementation of a unique waveform reduces the baseline separation required by radar interferometers and provides a means of simultaneous reception the complete 2x2 polarization matrix in a single transmission. The use of wideband interferometry improves angular resolution and accuracy over conventional radars. The advances will benefit applications of radar interferometry in general.