AFRL posts RFI for non-SATCOM BLOS communications
On September 17, the Air Force Research Laboratory posted a request for information on Non- Satellite Communication (SATCOM) Beyond Line of Sight (BLOS) Communications. Abstracts are due by October 17.
The RFI seeks to obtain technical information on the current state-of-the-art and the future development potential for non-SATCOM BLOS technologies (e.g. troposcatter, HF, UAV relays, passive reflector systems, etc.). Further, it seeks to obtain information about current and planned development initiatives, technology maturity, fabrication methods, availability, schedule and cost of such materials for potential use in anticipated military applications.
This announcement is not a request for proposals; therefore, responses to the RFI are not considered offers and cannot be accepted by the Government to form a binding contract. The technical information submitted will be part of a collaborative approach and peer review across other services, agencies and federal departments and coalition government partners to ensure appropriate coordination and understanding of interdependencies with relevant defense, homeland security, and intelligence authorities. It will also draw upon the deep knowledge, experience, and capabilities within global industrial and academic centers of gravity.
The focus of this RFI is on the identification of existing technologies and the near to long-term development potential for the next generation of non- Satellite Communication (SATCOM) Beyond Line of Sight (BLOS) communication systems. Non-SATCOM BLOS communication systems that exist today include tropospheric scatter and high frequency systems as well as various tethered and untethered unmanned aerial vehicles that act as relays. We are interested in systems that would provide the best redundancy to SATCOM systems in terms of performance characteristics. These systems may include the above mentioned systems as well as less known systems such as passive scatter systems, e.g. aircraft and meteor burst scatter, or an entirely novel idea of achieving BLOS communications. The response should address aspects such as operating distance of each technology, reliability, throughput, latency, time of day and weather dependence, etc.
Full information is available here.