HPEC technology for radar, sonar, autonomous aircraft, and 3D data-reconstruction applications

Myriad sensors and electro-optical systems are capturing an ever-increasing amount of data, including full-motion video and high-quality imagery, in a wide variety of military and civil applications, ranging from homeland security and law enforcement to military intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) missions. Exponential growth in the amount of data captured daily is driving the requirement for robust, reliable, and capable computing infrastructures.

Engineers are outfitting vehicles in the air, on the ground, and at sea with high-performance embedded computing (HPEC) technologies to fulfill the mounting need to process data—translating it into actionable intelligence—at the edge of the battlefield , both on demand and on site, rather than offloading it to intelligence experts far from the field.

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Sponsor: Kontron America

Source: Avionics Intelligence

Advanced Drone and Targets Systems

Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. (Nasdaq:KTOS), a leading National Security Solutions provider, announced today that its Micro Systems, Inc. subsidiary of the Advanced Drone and Targets Systems (ADTS) Division recently received a contract modification from the U.S. Army valued at up to $6.64 million for additional engineering services option hours in support of the Target Tracking and Control System (TTCS), Target Interface Control Units (TICU) and associated ancillary equipment. Under the modification for additional option hours, Micro Systems may be issued option exercise modifications to provide engineering services to develop upgrades to the US Army TTCS, TICU, and associated ancillary equipment.

The company anticipates that several orders will be received under this contract before the middle of the year. Kratos’ ADTS Division is a premier provider of high performance unmanned drone aircraft and these systems’ related avionics, electronics, command and control systems, solutions, services and logistics.

Kevin Ferguson, Senior Vice President of Micro Systems, Inc., said, “Micro Systems is pleased to continue our long term relationship with the US Army’s Targets Management Office. We are excited about all the future opportunities this award represents. Lasting relationships such as this are an indication of the quality of our people and products.”

About Kratos Defense & Security Solutions

Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. (Nasdaq:KTOS) is a specialized National Security technology Company providing mission critical products, solutions and services for United States National Security. Kratos’ core capabilities are sophisticated engineering, manufacturing and system integration offerings for National Security platforms and programs. Kratos’ areas of expertise include Command, Control, Communications, Computing, Combat Systems, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C5ISR), satellite communication systems, electronic warfare, unmanned systems, missile defense, cyber warfare, cybersecurity, information assurance, and critical infrastructure security. Kratos has primarily an engineering and technically oriented work force of approximately 3,800. Substantially all of Kratos’ work is performed on a military base, in a secure facility or at a critical infrastructure location. Kratos’ primary end customers are National Security related agencies. News and information are available at www.KratosDefense.com.

Notice Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements in this press release may constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are made on the basis of the current beliefs, expectations and assumptions of the management of Kratos and are subject to significant risks and uncertainty, including risks related to product failure, general economic conditions and cutbacks in spending. Investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on any such forward-looking statements. All such forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and Kratos undertakes no obligation to update or revise these statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. For a further discussion of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from those expressed in these forward-looking statements, as well as risks relating to the business of Kratos in general, see the risk disclosures in the Annual Report on Form 10-K of Kratos for the year ended December 29, 2013, and in subsequent reports on Forms 10-Q and 8-K and other filings made with the SEC by Kratos.

CONTACT: Press Contact:

         Yolanda White

         858-812-7302 Direct

         Investor Information:



Source: IrKratosDefense

MQ-1B Predator accident report released

Armed Predator

Armed Predator

LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Va. — A failed power converter in an MQ-1B Predator’s onboard control module led to the crash of the aircraft over the Mediterranean Sea, Sept. 17, 2013, according to an Air Combat Command Abbreviated Accident Investigation Board report released today.

The remotely piloted aircraft was deployed from the 432d Wing at Creech Air Force Base, Nev. When the accident occurred, the aircraft was returning from a 20- hour intelligence, surveillance and reconnaisance operational mission in support of U.S. Africa Command. The aircraft and one communication pod were lost on impact, with a loss valued at approximately $5.3 million. There were no injuries or damage to other government or private property.

According to the report, the crew noticed a loss in communications with the aircraft prior to handing control over to the Launch and Recovery Element. The crew completed appropriate checklists, and notified the GCS that they could not establish communications with the aircraft.

Two seconds prior to the loss of satellite link with the aircraft, the GCS logged electrical, flight control and engine warning indications. The board president found that these indicators were a direct result of a power converter malfunction in the aircraft’s control module, which forced the RPA to lose control in the air and begin a rapid spiral descent into the Mediterranean Sea.

The board president found by clear and convincing evidence, that the mishap was caused by failure of the power converter in the control module, which led to loss of control of stabilizers and engine power output. For more information, contact Air Combat Command Public Affairs at (757) 764-5007 or e-mail accpa.operations@us.af.mil.

Source: ACC


Mobile HotSpot

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. DARPA performers recently completed the first of three phases in which they developed and tested key technologies to be integrated into a complete system and flight tested in subsequent phases.

“We’re pleased with the technical achievements we’ve seen so far in steerable millimeter-wave antennas and millimeter-wave amplifier technology,” said Dick Ridgway, DARPA program manager. “These successes—and the novel networking approaches needed to maintain these high-capacity links—are key to providing forward deployed units with the same high-capacity connectivity we all enjoy over our 4G cell-phone networks.”

Phase 1 accomplishments include:

    • Smaller, steerable millimeter-wave antennas: During field testing, the program successfully demonstrated steerable, compact millimeter-wave antennas that rapidly acquire, track, and establish a communications link between moving platforms. Steerable millimeter-wave antennas will enable the formation of a high-capacity backhaul network between aerial and ground platforms.
    • Low-noise amplifiers: Performers also demonstrated an advanced low-noise amplifier (LNA), which boosts the desired communications signal while minimizing unwanted noise. The prototype achieved the record for the world’s lowest noise millimeter-wave LNA at about half the noise figure of a typical LNA.
    • More efficient and capable power amplifiers: Efficient millimeter-wave amplification is required to achieve the long ranges (> 50 km) desired in the Mobile Hotspots program.  During Phase 1, performers demonstrated output power exceeding 1 watt and 20% power added efficiency (PAE) from a single gallium nitride (GaN) chip operating at E-Band frequencies (71 GHz to 86 GHz). Output powers exceeding 20 watts and approaching 20% PAE were also achieved using power-combining techniques.
    • New approaches for robust airborne networking: Mobile ad-hoc networking approaches were developed to maintain the high-capacity backhaul network among mobile air and ground platforms. Phase 1 performers developed unique solutions to overcome connectivity and network topology challenges associated with mobility and signal blockages due to terrain and platform shadowing.
  • Low-Size, Weight, and Power (SWAP) pod design to carry it all: Performers created engineering designs for small, lightweight pods to be mounted on an RQ-7 Shadow UAV. The pods, with all of the Mobile Hotspots components inside, are designed to meet the challenging program goals of widths no more than 8 inches, weight less than 20 pounds, and power consumption less than 150 watts.

Phase 2 of the program began March 2014. Two performers, L-3 Communications and FIRST RF, were chosen to lead teams comprising several Phase 1 performers. Phase 2 goals include the integration of the selected Phase 1 technologies into Shadow-compatible aerial pods and ground vehicles.  Phase 2 will conclude with a ground demonstration of at least four Shadow-compatible pods, two ground vehicles and a fixed ground node. A planned third phase will encompass field testing of the Mobile Hotspot systems on networks of multiple SRQ-7 Shadow UAVs and mobile ground vehicles.


Providing high-bandwidth communications for troops in remote forward operating locations is not only critical but also challenging because a reliable infrastructure optimized for remote geographic areas does not exist. To overcome the challenge of data transmission in remote areas, the Agency’s Mobile Hotspots program intends to develop and demonstrate a scalable, mobile, millimeter-wave communications backbone with the capacity and range needed to connect dismounted warfighters with forward-operating bases (FOBs), tactical operations centers (TOCs), intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) assets, and fixed communications infrastructure. The backbone should also provide reliable end-to-end data delivery between hotspots, as well as from ISR sources and command centers.

The program envisions air, mobile and fixed assets, most of which are organic to the deployed unit, that provide a gigabit-per-second tactical millimeter-wave backbone network extending to the lowest-echelon warfighters. To achieve this capability, the program seeks to develop advanced millimeter-wave pointing, acquisition and tracking (PAT) technologies that are needed to provide high connectivity to the forward-located mobile hotspots. Advanced PAT technology is key for connectivity to small UAVs, for example, enabling them to serve as flying nodes on the mobile high-speed backbone. Additionally, the program seeks novel technologies to increase the transmission power of millimeter-wave amplifiers to provide adequate ranges within the small size, weight, and power (SWAP) constraints required for company-level unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).


Dr. Richard Ridgway

Source: DARPA


Thales has today signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Qatar Armed Forces to assist in the development of an Optionally Piloted Vehicle – Aircraft (OPV-A), a high performance Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance (ISTAR) system, and the delivery of a full end-to-end training solution.

The OPV-A airframe, to be selected by the Qatar Armed Forces, will be integrated with a mission systems capability to enable the optionally piloted capability.

The Optionally Piloted Vehicle – Aircraft (OPV-A) to be developed is a hybrid between a conventional aircraft and an Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS). They are able to fly with or without a pilot on board the aircraft. Unimpeded by a human’s physiological limitations, an OPV is able to operate under more adverse conditions and/or for greater endurance times. Retaining on-board controls, the OPV can operate as a conventional aircraft during missions for which direct human control is preferred or desired as an immediate option.

Key points

  • Thales to assist the Qatar Armed Forces with the development of an Optionally Piloted Vehicle – Aircraft.
  • The airframe will be manned or unmanned.
  • Its mission systems capability will enable the optionally piloted capability.

Source: Thales Group

Training ISR operators: BAE Systems


Publicado el 02/04/2014

Susan Oakley, Technical Director at BAE Systems, explains the company’s approach to training, specifically in the field of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.

Source: TheDefenceIQ·


AUS&R 2013. Israel. Expo Autonomous. Unmanned Systems & Robotics

i-HLS and DEFENSE UPDATE are excited to present AUS&R 2013, Nov. 26-28, 2013 – a unique opportunity for developers, manufacturers, OEM, service providers and operators of unmanned systems, to display and demonstrate their capabilities to professional audience.

Policy makers, uniformed service leaders, law enforcement and industry partners will gather here to network, share best practices and explore potential paths for future cooperation.

Live demonstration of unmanned vehicles in the air, on land and at sea!

Reflecting Israel’s leadership in the field of the unmanned systems field, AUS&R 2013 will provide an opportunity to display numerous platforms, systems and solutions from Israel and abroad, demonstrated live and on site!

The live display will comprise three sessions, 45 min. each. The sessions will include air, land and naval vehicles. The performance of different mission payloads will be presented to the audience over large video screens, providing extensive audio-visual support to display demonstrations throughout the day.