November 18, 2009

Missile Delivered UAVs

The US Army is funding Missile Delivered UAVs amongst dozens of other projects

A10-006 Missile Delivered UAV
A10-010 Real-time Visualization Tool for Distributed Intrusion Detection System Data
A10-011 Intelligent Agents for Improved Sensor Deployment and Surveillance
A10-012 Coordinated Responses through Knowledge Sharing in Mobile Agent-Based Intrusion Detection Systems
A10-013 Intrusion Detection System (IDS) With Automatic Signature Generation for Self Healing Networks
A10-014 Spoofing Network Architectures in Response to Hostile Reconnaissance
A10-015 Linearity Improvement of MMIC Power Amplifiers at Reduced Output Power Backoff
A10-016 Wideband Multi-Carrier Digital Up-Converter
A10-017 Indium Surface Preparation for Improved Flip-Chip Hybridization
A10-018 In-Vacuo Passivation of High Aspect Ratio HgCdTe Surfaces
A10-019 Electronically Switchable infrared Beam Splitter Technology
A10-020 Advanced Molded Glass Lenses
A10-021 Lightweight, Wide Field-Of-View Wave-guided Head-mounted Display
A10-022 Innovative Annealing Apparatus for Mercury-Based, Compound Semiconductors
A10-023 Untethered Real Time Low Cost Head Tracking
A10-024 Real-Time Vis-SWIR Multispectral Sensor for Day/Night Operations
A10-025 Large Format Dual Band FPA ROIC for Low Flux Environments
A10-026 A Viable Method for Metal Nano-Coating of Graphite Microfibers
A10-027 Improved Methods of Explosively Disseminating Bi-Spectral Obscurant Materials

A10-028 Innovative and Novel Concepts for Eye-Safe Wavelength High Power Fiber Lasers for Increased Performance
A10-029 Flux Compression Generators
A10-030 Electromagnetic Attack Detector
A10-031 Lightweight Nanosatellite Propulsion System to Enhance Battlespace Awareness and Battle Command Capabilities
A10-032 Information Security and Trust in a Space Communications Network


To develop innovative concepts to provide near real-time situational awareness on the battlefield with the possibility of providing a quick response attack.


ISR (Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance) platforms delivered from missiles can potentially provide battlefield information that is only seconds old when transmitted from long ranges. This information is particularly valuable since it is so current. It provides the potential for striking a very mobile enemy before he has time to alter his position. In addition, it also offers the possibility of a deep strike by the platform itself.

Among the potential ISR platforms that have recently been proposed/developed/built are a large number of UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) and LAM (loiter-attack missile) concepts. Some of these concepts have the potential of being packaged in a missile and carried for long distances from their launch point. Obviously, the quicker the missile arrives in the vicinity of the targets, the more valuable the information being transmitted to the war fighter for use in targeting the enemy and/or providing situational awareness and/or providing battle damage information. The use of any existing components for this system obviously is important since the cost of the system is directly affected.

PHASE I: This solicitation seeks innovative concepts to deliver an ISR (Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance) platform that reports back in near real-time and provides the possibility of a long-range strike mission at the end of the ISR mission. Technical approaches formulated in Phase-I shall place emphasis on minimization of the delay in providing battle field information and attacking the enemy target complex. Phase-I concept development shall include simulated fly-outs of the system to determine flight parameters of interest (area-time coverage, maximum and minimum range, dispense altitude, operational altitude, etc.) and, thus, establish the potential for Phase-II success.

PHASE II: The technical approach formulated in Phase-I will be developed and refined for full-scale flight simulation. The contractor shall pay particular attention to the dispense of the ISR platform from the missile accounting for any aero-propulsion interference between the platform and missile. The contractor will also pay particular attention to the missile proposed for delivery of the ISR system to insure there are no incompatibilities between the delivery mission and the original operational requirements of the missile (center-of-gravity, angle-of-attack, flight velocity, etc.). The critical flight phase of the concept shall be refined and the dispense of the ISR platform planned for a test in a full scale, Government owned ground test facility using instrumented tunnel models at a fidelity level deemed appropriate at that time. Tunnel time will be provided as GFE; tunnel models will be developed under Phase-II.

PHASE III: If successful, the end result of this Phase-I/Phase-II research effort will be a validated concept and set of validated research tools for the dispense, by AMRDEC, of a ISR platform from a tactical missile. The transition of this product will require additional upgrades of the software tool set for a user-friendly environment along with the concurrent development of application specific data bases to include the required input parameters such as vehicle geometries, aerodynamic and aero-propulsion properties, and performance parameters.

For military applications, this technology is directly applicable to the battle field awareness provided from UAVs and other ISR platforms. Currently, this information is near real-time and is not provided for any long range battle field situations. There are no known commercial applications for this technology at this time; however, it is conceivable that search/rescue and wild fire control operations that have a very short time line could benefit directly from this technology product.

The most likely customer and source of Government funding for Phase-III will be those service project offices responsible for the development of battle field situational awareness specifically using UAV ISR platforms. Indeed, the expansion of UAV capabilities and missions throughout the armed services continues as one of the most promising areas of research as evident in Reference 1 which forecasts a combined service and industry near term investment of over $20 billion.

A10-004 Modular, rapid, common hardware-in-the-loop framework development

Reduce latency in a multi-node communication architecture and lead to a modular and re-usable communications architecture for the hardware-in-the-loop (HWIL) test environment.

A10-008 Synthesis of Sulfide Nanopowders for Durable Optical Ceramics

Develop processes to produce multi-kilogram quantities of high purity nanometer sized sulfide powders suitable for producing fully dense bulk nanocrytalline optical ceramics.

Multimode sensors are being employed on missiles to maximize their modes of operation and target engagement. The dome or window used to protect the internal components must be transparent to all sensed wavelengths of the internal sensors. Very few materials are sufficiently transparent at both the semi-active laser wavelengths and long-wave infrared wavelengths (8-12 microns). The current benchmark material is multispectral ZnS, but it lacks the physical durability to survive in severe rain, sand, or shock environments. It has been demonstrated that reducing the grain size in oxide ceramic materials can improve mechanical properties. Long-wave infrared transmitting materials also should greatly benefit from reduced grain size.

Optical nanomaterials enable a new way of optimizing the mechanical properties without sacrificing optical properties. For long-wave infrared applications, sulfide based nanomaterials are required. The wavelengths of interest in these materials are visible through LWIR. In order to fabricate nanocrystalline sulfide optical ceramics using suitable powder consolidation techniques, extremely fine, pure sulfide powders with narrow powder size distribution are required. The powders must be minimally agglomerated, have an average particle diameter of 35 nm to 50 nm with no more that 10% less than 10 nm and no more than 10% greater than 70nm, and a maximum particle diameter of 100 nm. Spherical powders are more desirable than powders having higher aspect ratios. The sintering characteristics and optical properties of ceramic powders are highly influenced by residual impurity levels. It is desirable to synthesize nanosized sulfide powders with minimum impurity content. The target sulfide purity is 99.99%. Impurities must be less than 10 ppm oxygen, less than 10 ppm carbon, and impurity transition metals less than detectable levels by GDMS. It is also desirable that the powders remains free flowing, resistant to agglomeration, and have good sintering kinetics.

The Army is seeking the following: (1) inexpensive, robust, and scalable method(s) for synthesizing nanosized (i.e., 10 – 100 nm) high purity sulfide powder with the characteristics described above; and (2) an inexpensive, robust, and scalable method to mass produce the nanosized sulfide powders. The process must produce repeatable powder characteristics such as particle size, chemical properties, and physical characteristics. The cost goal for this effort is less than $500/kg.

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