Answering Your Questions: What are New Missions for Military UAVs?

On the battlefield, you need to know as much as possible.

Posted in: Articles, Blog, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Data Acquisition, Defense, Cameras, Imaging, Video, Data Acquisition, Sensors

Software Accelerates Hypersonic Engine Development

Argonne National Laboratory and the Air Force Research Laboratory developed a new numerical modeling tool that allows for a better understanding of rotating detonation engines (RDEs). Unlike conventional gas turbine engines, RDEs leverage high-intensity, self-sustaining detonation to rapidly consume the fuel-air mixture, typically in a ring-shaped, cylindrical chamber.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, Computer-Aided Engineering (CAE), Mathematical/Scientific Software, Simulation Software

Neural Lander Uses AI to Land Drones Smoothly

Landing multi-rotor drones smoothly is difficult. Complex turbulence is created by the airflow from each rotor bouncing off the ground as the ground grows closer during descent. Drones typically wobble and inch slowly toward a landing until power is finally cut and they drop the remaining distance to the ground.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Defense

Army Turns to Smart Technology to Protect Military Installations

Assistant Secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy and Environment Alex Beehler doesn't need proof of threats to military and government installations. He is reminded every day. His office sits next to the point of impact where American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the western side of the Pentagon nearly 18 years ago during the 9/11 attacks. As the variety and complexity of threats continue to increase, security at U.S. military installations has taken increased importance in the years since 9/11.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, Data Acquisition, Detectors, Sensors, Transducers

NRL Develops Laser Processing Method to Increase Efficiency of Optoelectronic Devices

Scientists at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) discovered a new method to passivate defects in next generation optical materials to improve optical quality and enable the miniaturization of light emitting diodes and other optical elements.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, Lasers & Laser Systems, Optical Components, Optics, Photonics

AFRL Achieves “Shocking” Materials Technology Breakthrough

The Air Force Research Laboratory, along with research partners at Los Alamos National Laboratory, are working to change the shape of materials technology with a breakthrough development that could open up a new range of possibilities for the military and beyond. The collaborative team has developed a 3-D printed polymer-based foam structure that responds to the force of a shock wave to act as a one-way switch, a long sought-after goal in shock research.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, Materials, Plastics

NASA Funds All-Electric Aircraft Research

The University of Illinois is leading a NASA-funded project to develop an all-electric aircraft. The project, called the Center for Cryogenic High-Efficiency Electrical Technology for Aircraft (CHEETA), focuses on electrically driven propulsion systems for commercial aircraft.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aviation, Defense

Broadband 1.2- and 2.4-mm Gallium Nitride (GaN) Power Amplifier Designs

The US Army Research Laboratory (ARL) has been working with Raytheon to design efficient, broadband, linear, high-power amplifiers and robust, broadband, low-noise amplifiers for future adaptive, multimodal radar systems. Raytheon has a high-performance, W-band, gallium nitride (GaN) fabrication process and a process design kit (PDK) that ARL used to design low-noise amplifiers, power amplifiers, and other circuits for future radar, communications, and sensor systems. After the first set of ARL and Raytheon designs was submitted for fabrication, test designs of broadband Class A/B power amplifiers were developed. While these designs did not get fabricated in the initial effort, they serve to demonstrate the performance, bandwidth, and capability of this GaN process and could potentially be fabricated in the future.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Electronic Components, Power Management, Power Supplies, Mechanical Components, RF & Microwave Electronics, Semiconductors & ICs

Electrical Characterization of Crystalline UO2, THO2 and U0.71TH0.29O2

Tracking and identifying radiation sources in the age of nuclear proliferation and well- resourced non-state actors is a national priority. Current neutron detection methods favor large detector volumes and long data collection times. Additionally, portable neutron detection methods have persistent problems with low signal-to-noise (small pulse height) and require large applied voltages.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Materials, Mechanical Components, MEMs, Semiconductors & ICs, Data Acquisition, Detectors, Sensors

The FACE™ of Military Modernization

U.S. rival countries have been rapidly modernizing their militaries, with publicized advances that pose credible challenges to U.S. supremacy in all aspects of warfare: air, land, sea, space and cyberspace. On January 19, 2018 Secretary Mattis discussed the National Defense Strategy and emphasized the need to modernize key capabilities to address these threats. He stated: “To keep pace with our times, the department will transition to a culture of performance and affordability that operates at the speed of relevance. Success does not go to the country that develops a new technology first, but rather, to the one that better integrates it and more swiftly adapts its way of fighting. Our current bureaucratic processes are insufficiently responsive to the department's needs for new equipment. We will prioritize speed of delivery, continuous adaptation and frequent modular upgrades.”

Posted in: Articles, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Data Acquisition, Defense, Mechanical Components, Data Acquisition, Sensors, Software