Defense Advanced Research Projects AgencyTagged Content List

Size, Weight and Power Constraints

Making technologies smaller, lighter and more power-efficient to increase military effectiveness

Showing 26 results for SWAP + Programs RSS
Military sensor systems typically require between three and eight years to complete, resulting in sensor technology unable to keep pace with rapidly evolving mission needs. Commercial systems of similar complexity, forced by competitive pressures, are routinely developed in one to two years.
Airspace for the flying public today is perpetually congested yet remarkably safe, thanks in no small part to a well-established air traffic control system that tracks, guides and continuously monitors thousands of flights a day. When it comes to small unmanned aerial systems (UAS) such as commercial quadcopters, however, no such comprehensive tracking system exists. And as off-the-shelf UAS become less expensive, easier to fly, and more adaptable for terrorist or military purposes, U.S. forces will increasingly be challenged by the need to quickly detect and identify such craft—especially in urban areas, where sight lines are limited and many objects may be moving at similar speeds.
The A-to-I Look-Through Program will fundamentally improve the operational bandwidth, linearity, and efficiency of electronic systems where the objective is to receive and transmit information using electromagnetic (radio) waves under extreme size/weight/power and environmental conditions required for DoD applications. This will be achieved by developing new electronic processing subsystems methods and architectures based on new understandings of mathematical principles and embedded signal processing. This program will develop ultra-wideband digital RF receivers based on A-to-I converter (AIC) technology.
Today’s electromagnetic (EM) systems use antenna arrays to provide unique capabilities, such as multiple beam forming and electronic steering, which are important for a wide variety of applications such as communications, signal intelligence (SIGINT), radar, and electronic warfare.
Unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) have inherent operational and tactical advantages such as stealth and surprise. UUV size, weight and volume are constrained by the handling, launch and recovery systems on their host platforms, however, and UUV range is limited by the amount of energy available for propulsion and the power required for a given underwater speed. Current state-of-the-art energy sources are limited by safety and certification requirements for host platforms.