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February 14, 2012

DARPA's budget and projects for Fiscal year 2013

1.
Wired Danger Room - In its new budget, unveiled on Monday, Darpa introduced a new $4 million investigation into technologies that will “manage the adversary’s sensory perception” in order to “confuse, delay, inhibit, or misdirect his actions.” Darpa calls the project “Battlefield Illusion.”

Battlefield Illusion” is one of several new Darpa programs that attempt to manipulate the electromagnetic spectrum to the American military’s advantage. The $3.5 million “Electro-Optical Warfare” effort will look for ways to jam laser-based communications and sensor systems — just like today’s radio frequency jammers mess with cell phones and radars. As adversaries move from old-school radars to newer-school infrared and laser systems to target our planes, these enemies get harder to track; there’s no sonic “ping” to trace back. The goal of the $8.5 million “Multi-Function Optical Sensor” is designed to fill this gap, giving U.S. aircraft “an alternative approach to detecting, tracking, and performing non-cooperative target identification.”




2. Aviation Week - New programs to continue research into boost-glide hypersonic weapons for tactical and global precision strike are included in the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (Darpa) $2.82 billion budget request for fiscal 2013.

The agency’s top line is essentially unchanged from fiscal 2012, but this disguises significant ramp-ups in spending on research into advanced cybersecurity and information technology to protect military networks. Darpa is seeking $25 million for cyber-sciences and $50 million for cyber-technology programs in fiscal 2013, almost double the 2012 spending. Funding levels are planned to double again by fiscal 2016.

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