Defense Advanced Research Projects AgencyTagged Content List

Mobile Technology

Technologies and advances that facilitate wireless, ubiquitous transmission, including miniaturization

Showing 34 results for Mobile RSS
Missions in remote, forward operating locations often suffer from a lack of connectivity to tactical operation centers and access to valuable intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) data. The assets needed for long-range, high-bandwidth communications capabilities are often unavailable to lower echelons due to theater-wide mission priorities. DARPA’s Mobile Hotspots program aims to help overcome this challenge by developing a reliable, on-demand capability for establishing long-range, high-capacity reachback that is organic to tactical units. The program is building and demonstrating a scalable, mobile millimeter-wave communications backhaul network mounted on small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and providing a 1 Gb/s capacity.
The explosive growth of global digital connectivity has opened new possibilities for designing and conducting social science research. Once limited by practical constraints to experiments involving just a few dozen participants—often university students or other easily available groups—or to correlational studies of large datasets without any opportunity for determining causation, scientists can now engage thousands of diverse volunteers online and explore an expanded range of important topics and questions.
Here’s something easy to forget when you are chatting on your cell phone or flipping channels on your smart TV: although wireless communication seems nothing short of magic, it is a brilliant, reality-anchored application of physics and engineering in which radio signals travel from a transmitter to a receiver in the form of electric and magnetic fields woven into fast-as-light electromagnetic waves.
If human ears could hear the electromagnetic spectrum, the noise levels these days would be overwhelming. The skyrocketing use of wireless devices in military and civilian domains has created a complicated and cacophonous environment, filled with signals of widely varying frequency and amplitude and a menagerie of modulations. For warfighters trying to maintain critical communications links, interpret ambiguous radar returns, or defend against electronic warfare tactics, the ability to sort through that thicket of waveforms is essential—to identify where key signals are coming from, what kind of signals they are, and how best to send and receive information via the least contested spectral bands.
The physical sphere of computers, home appliances, vehicles, cameras, and the ever-growing menagerie of handheld devices has become increasingly intertwined-by way of wireless connections to the internet-with the digital spheres of data and information. This expanding new technology arena brings with it vast opportunities for innovation, challenging and growing demand for access to the electromagnetic spectrum, and new vulnerabilities to ill-willed interference. Catalyzing interest and awareness in this cyber-physical intersection —and the development of new technology with an eye on both its promise and peril—is what program manager Tom Rondeau hopes his yearlong campaign, known as DARPA Software Defined Radio (SDR) Hackfests, will help to achieve.