US: The Department of Defense has issued its Electromagnetic Spectrum Strategy (EMS) to increase available spectrum in order to meet growing demand from the commercial wireless industry while maintaining critical military capabilities. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is working on the balancing act with two programmes — Advanced RF Mapping (RadioMap) and Shared Spectrum Access for Radar and Communications (SSPARC) — that seek to fine-tune spectrum use and develop ways of sharing bandwidth. In an amendment to an existing Broad Agency Announcement from DARPA’s Strategic Technology Office (STO), a spokesperson from the office revealed that it is seeking proposals for systems analysis and an understanding of fundamental tradeoffs for the two programmes. STO’s focus areas include system and technology development related to positioning, navigation and timing (PNT); electronic warfare; command and control; intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance; and battle management.
The RadioMap programme seeks to provide a map detailing spectrum use in complex environments, with the goal of reducing spectrum congestion and interference problems. This capability would preferably piggy-back on modern radios when they are not actively being used – the tactical radios would, in a non-harmful way, remotely map spectrum usage. For the current solicitation, DARPA is seeking proposals that investigate additional applications of WALDO, the software being developed under the RadioMap programme. The middleware enables applications to request remote radios to carry out transmission, reception and signal processing functions without compromising the main purpose of the device. The solicitation is also seeking proposals for the SSPARC program, which is designed to improve spectrum sharing capabilities between military radars and military communications, and between military radars and commercial communications systems. The programme seeks to create cooperative spectrum sharing in which information is shared between two systems in real time.
DARPA wants proposals that investigate the possibility of systems concepts in which radar and communications functions are co-designed or integrated into a single system. The proposals should address challenges such as adversaries seeking to exploit sharing mechanisms, malfunctioning communications devices, and the presence of non-cooperative emitters such as jammers.
Source: Defense systems