PEI, located south of Lincoln, Nebraska, specializes in composite design and manufacturing. To improve the fuel efficiency while also improving ride quality and water performance of Marine Corps amphibious vehicles, PEI has identified various metallic structures which can be redesigned using composite materials to reduce weight of propulsion/drive system parts by 30%, design a hydrodynamically shaped composite extendable bow vane (flap) and drag reducing stern flaps, and reduce corrosion maintenance efforts. Risk is already diminished through the completion of design and analysis of a composite torsion shaft, winding trials to evaluate ply-thickness and band density of various fibers and resins, and fabrication of a full-scale composite torsion bar. PEI plans to provide finished parts to the Marine Corps for installation during maintenance operations and the prime contractor during vehicle production.
Cardinal Engineering, a system survivability and shock qualification engineering firm, has developed a design and qualification software tool that can be used by equipment suppliers or Navy Approval Authorities to evaluate new COLUMBIA Class equipment designs for shock survivability in order to reduce design hours and ensure a new item is capable of achieving shock qualification by extension. The prototype software tool, termed Comparative Design Assessment Tool (CDAT), compares and assesses designs for new equipment relative to designs of equipment that have already achieved shock qualification by guiding the user through shock qualification by extension logic found within MIL-S-901D Interim Change #2. CDAT takes a complicated technical ship specification and turns it into a simple software tool that a non-expert can use.
Current hydraulic actuators come significant problems; oil needs vigilant servicing to fight off leaks while contamination and low system efficiency can cause thermal issues. A transition to more efficient electric actuation is needed in multiple applications, specifically for Unmanned Underwater Vehicles (UUV). Continental Controls and Design (CC&D) provides state of the art proven integrated actuation solutions with unmatched force density. CC&D's Electric Actuation System (EAS) is a miniature three-inch system that can produce 10,000 pounds of force in a completely integrated product, weighing about 11 pounds with continuous force capability equivalent to a hydraulic system. Our pressure vessel demonstrator allows high fidelity endurance testing with arbitrary force, speed and pressure profiles with a self-contained push/pull actuator pair. CC&D's goal is to integrate and transition this technology into government and prime contractor systems for facilitating low cost and reliable actuation.
Texas Research Institute Austin, Inc. is developing a composite standardized payload canister to support rapid integration of payloads into the Virginia Class Submarines. Our design incorporates universal connections and fittings that interface between the individual payload tubes within the payload canister and the host ship’s electrical, hydraulic, data, flood/drain, and structural connections to facilitate the integration of a variety of payloads. Composite materials offer benefits related to corrosion resistance, reduced weight, acoustic dampening, vibration dampening, and faster manufacturing processes. New materials, architectures, and consolidation processes are expected to meet performance requirements, effect life cycle cost reductions, and maintain required production rates. Once the chief components have been designed, documented, manufactured and tested at the end of the Phase II Base effort, a full-scale canister will be fabricated for evaluation of material, process, and structure capabilities.
This technology enables surface ship Ka-band communications links with Low and Medium Earth Orbit (LEO/MEO) satellites by developing a radome-integrated Ka-band transmit antenna system for Commercial Broadband Antenna Program (CBSP). A radome integrated antenna system implemented with additively manufacture frequency selective surface (FSS) based radiating elements is developed; this approach enables the new Ka-band transmit capability while maintaining existing CBSP system functionality. SI2 Technologies (SI2) focuses on antenna and array systems, Frequency Selective Surfaces, structural honeycomb absorbers, flexible hybrid electronics and additive manufacturing in support of the Department of Defense. Targeted defense applications include existing radomes on surface ships and submarines. SI2’s prior work in antenna design and development is directly applicable to this task and mitigates development risk. SI2 is always looking for partners as the technology matures.
Casualty power is critical to sustainment of mission capabilities. There is currently no way to restore medium voltage direct current power to zones isolated by damage. Our technology will provide a safe, lightweight and affordable way to solve that problem. This modular system can be scaled to lower voltage direct current applications, significantly improving utility and safety. We demonstrated system technical feasibility and designed it to reduce personnel hazards while maintaining or increasing deployment speed compared to existing 450VAC systems. We bring portability and safety: a team of personnel composed of sailors of average size and strength can rig the system, in a worst case scenario, within 30 minutes. The system has safety features that do not exist in current US Navy casualty power systems.
Lynntech is developing practical all solid-state (PASS) batteries with enhanced safety and performance for military aircraft and other applications. Lynntech has significant experience developing advanced batteries. for military and commercial applications. PASS batteries utilize core-shell electrodes and high conductivity solid electrolytes. These features provide a clear competitive advantage over current Lithium batteries based on improved safety/abuse tolerance and cycle life, in addition to high energy and power densities. The F/A-18 & EA-18G Program Office (PMA-265) is an initial transition target as the sponsoring program office, while Air Anti-Submarine Warfare Systems Program Office (PMA-264) has shown interest to support efforts by the Electrical Power branch within NAWCAD to begin an assessment for the potential for a post-Phase II initiative. Lynntech has performed both lab-scale and scaled-up electrode/electrolyte preparations, including cell fabrication and evaluation, which demonstrated the capability of PASS batteries to meet the Navy’s requirements.
Early detection of lithium battery faults provides critical warning before these issues evolve into more hazardous situations, such as fire, toxic off-gassing, or catastrophic failure. Lynntech is developing an early warning fault indication system (EWFIS) with low volume, weight, and energy. It provides high speed monitoring at the cell level along with system performance monitoring, triggering an alarm when a battery fault precursor is detected. Lynntech has significant experience in developing lithium batteries, miniature chemical sensors, and integrated electronics. EWFIS can be adapted to many battery packages and chemistries, including Li-ion batteries in Navy’s UUVs and submarines. EWFIS prototypes have been successfully designed, fabricated, and tested for monitoring Li-ion batteries (8 or 32 cells). The ultimate transition goal for this technology is government and prime contractor systems for monitoring lithium batteries, increasing safety and reliability.
This technology combines edge-diffraction modeling, boundary-element methods, and parallel processing to create a model of acoustic scattering of midfrequency active sonar from underwater targets that are larger than mines and smaller than conventional submarines. ARiA’s approach offers an accurate and efficient method for calculating acoustic scattering of midfrequency threats that is 10 times faster than current state-of-the-art target-scattering models and scales well at high frequencies. This method has been validated against third party BEM software and analytical solutions. ARiA provides research and development in interdisciplinary acoustics, signal processing, modeling & simulation, machine learning, and artificial intelligence. The goal is to transition this technology as a tool for ONR, NAVAIR, and NAVSEA to use in creating midfrequency synthetic target signatures for developing signal-processing algorithms.
Piezoelectric morphing actuator replaces servos in existing Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) platforms. AVID provides a control system kit, which includes; the control and electronic driver boards necessary for vehicle control with the piezoelectric actuator. This technology keeps the vehicle in the fight longer, without needing to replace servos after landing. AVID has successfully demonstrated equivalent or increased performance in flight with increased reliability over servos during an Air Force Phase 2 Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) project. The technology was then sponsored by the Air Force for an enhancement that demonstrated successful integration of the morphing flight control (MFC) actuation on a production micro-UAS. The technology garnered further funding from the Navy for its capability to withstand the marine environments. AVID has developed the morphing technology to be advantageous on folding wing canister launched systems in the 100 lb weight class, and ducted fan vertical take-off-and-landing (VTOL) unmanned aircraft vehicle (UAV) system to enhance controllability.
Deep learning can exploit high dimensional data in tracking systems to improve snippet screening and reduce latency of contact follower creation and classification. A robust machine learning capability will improve the performance of the active off board sensors deployed from on the P-8A aircraft; increasing the speed of its search mission. Signal Systems Corporation (SSC) is a small business specializing in signal processing for distributed acoustic sensors able to provide machine learning capabilities to platforms that are informed by deep domain knowledge of underwater acoustics, multistatic sonar, and tracking. The risk of performance degradation in operation is being mitigated by segregating representative flights from the normal process of training and evaluation. SSC seeks to integrate this technology into existing field level detection and tracking systems as either a primary or a sub-contractor.
WRT developed an advanced, efficient and integrated technology for detection and characterization of obscured seabed targets. Deployed on inspection-class remotely operated vehicles (ROV), the system integrates high-sensitivity miniaturized-magnetometers (MAG) for standoff target detection and 3D electromagnetics (EM) for target identification. This technology addresses obscured sub-bottom targets in cluttered seabed environments, where acoustics technologies have limited capabilities, and fills mine countermeasures (MCM), unexploded ordnance (UXO) and improvised explosive device (IED) detection performance gaps. The combined MAG and 3D-EM system is tightly integrated on an inspection-class ROV, deployed from multiple vessels, including rigid-hulled inflatable boats (RHIB)s. This provides the warfighter a flexible and low-cost solution to various detection challenges. WRT is a small business with advanced capabilities for integration of advanced miniaturized geophysical sensors and realtime processing on unmanned platform.
Q-Peak has developed fiber connectors which achieve low loss at record power levels. Q-Peak Inc. is a small business located in Bedford, MA with over 30 years’ experience delivering laser components and systems, including pulsed and continuous wave sources spanning ultra-violet to infrared. Q-Peak will deliver mid-IR fiber connectors with improved power handling for military aerospace air vehicle fiber networks. Using materials developed at the Naval Research Laboratory, Q-Peak has created a proprietary process which prevents stray light from harming sensitive optical components. Having demonstrated that optical characteristics of the fiber are unharmed by its process, Q-Peak is conducting high power testing. Q-Peak is seeking commercial and government partners to invest in and integrate its connectors into high power fiber laser products.
The Navy utilizes polymer-bound energetic materials for warheads, propellants, and pyrotechnics. Properties like mechanical strength, pot-life, processing, and cure times are either key features or challenging impediments. Advances in additive manufacturing utilizing diverse materials can be leveraged to perform formulation testing and rapid prototyping of unique energetic formulations. This enables potential fast-tracked scale-up processes for the direct manufacture of warheads, propellants, and pyrotechnics. Lynntech has experience developing novel feedstocks for additive manufacturing and working with energetics; we are developing photo-curable and multi-stage cured polymer/binder systems for COTS 3D printer rapid prototyping (print, cure, and testing) of explosive formulations. These unique 3D printable feedstocks can be integrated into development and manufacturing processes utilized by government and prime contractors for testing and production of energetics.
Lack of real-time prognostics leads to inefficiencies in preventative and corrective maintenance resulting in wasted resources, increased cost, and reduced mission readiness. SNAPPR is a hardware health-monitoring tool that provides real-time prediction of faults and system health, using these predictions to recommend maintenance actions enhance mission readiness and control costs. SNAPPR technology is modular and extensible, simplifying application to other systems requiring preventative and corrective maintenance. SNAPPR is being demonstrated on the Aegis Radar sub-system and undergoing functional verification. Charles River Analytics is an applied S&T company that works in many areas of Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Cognitive Systems Engineering with applications ranging from robotics, sensor processing, and autonomous system to decision assistance, interactive training, and advanced human interfaces and visualizations. The ultimate goal is to integrate and transition this technology to the prime contractor for the Aegis radar.
Maintaining operator skills on the Navy’s AN/SQQ-89A (V) 15 (SQQ-89) sonar system requires supervised training with instructor feedback. Creative Technologies Inc. ‘s (CTI) SQQ-89 Gamification Capability (SGC) will automate this with software combining three features. Experts train a machine learning (ML) expert module which measures student performance interpreted by a second ML module. A synthetic ocean, Just Add Water Simulation (JAWS), is used to create training scenarios. Phase II proof-of-concept prototypes have validated the ML technical approach. CTI specializes in serious game and ML algorithm development. SGC is intended for the SQQ-89 program of record. SGC modules can be used to measure performance in tactical systems and training aids; JAWS can serve as a simulation driver in a broad range of virtual environments throughout the DoD.
The Advanced Direct Digital Exciter for Radar (ADDER) is a key component of a technology refresh for the SPS-49 system. It provides improved system performance and extends the service life of the system. The application for this product spans ship-based radar systems from UHF to Ku-band. Sustained competitive advantage is provided as this system offers significant performance improvement while lowering sustainment costs. The modular nature of the product offers opportunities to upgrade and refresh aging radar systems across the fleet at a reduced cost since they can leverage this technology. Previous successful development of similar boards used by the larger DREX+ system mitigates risk. The ultimate goal is to transition this technology into radar system upgrades across the DoD.
Charles River Analytics is a leading provider of innovative R&D solutions for increasingly complex and important human-systems challenges developed Blended Advanced Decision GUI Environment for Reasoning Support (BADGERS) enabling shipboard maintainers to rapidly analyze system status and predicted malfunctions, evaluate high-level mission impacts, and efficiently make maintenance decisions through intuitive and innovative data visualizations. BADGERS will help the execution of maintenance analysis, planning, and execution in the Navy community, including for complex, mission-critical systems such as Aegis Weapon System (AWS), the Operational Readiness Test System (ORTS) and the Integrated Condition Assessment System (ICAS) by combining an advanced ecological approach to supporting maintenance display visualization design. We seek to demonstrate its capabilities on the AEGIS deck and would entertain licensing BADGERS technology to lead system integrators (LSIs).
Object Graphics Language (ObjGL) is a novel, high-level, cross-platform, display agnostic application programming interface (API) streamlined to render simultaneously to a variety of multi-view displays. ObjGL enables a Heterogeneous Display Environment (HDE) allowing the operator to select the best visualization device for the task, increasing effectiveness and efficiency. To date, ObjGL demonstrations include a simple battle simulation application operating on a light-field, multi-planar, head-mounted, and 2D display simultaneously. Standardization of ObjGL/HDE enables the AEGIS display environment to exploit and integrate emerging 3D displays with ease. As the recognized world leader in light-field displays and enabling technologies, FoVI3D’s small but deep technical team offers licensing and co-development opportunities to defense primes to manufacture, integrate, and deliver an improved system to support visualization technologies enabling quicker informed operator decisions.
The Improved Skirt System for Air Cushion Vehicles (ACV) uses a new elastomer coating technique to create a strong, abrasion resistant textile to withstand extreme physical requirements. Materials Sciences LLC (MSC) is an engineering and manufacturing company focused on applying knowledge of material mechanics to create unique solutions. The skirt system for the Ship-to-Shore Connector (SSC) sees perhaps the most extreme punishment of any coated fabric, resulting in high replacement costs and down-time. MSC’s approach uses an alternative coating method which enables high-performance textile designs that are incompatible with conventional techniques. The product has shown superior performance to the existing product. MSC is currently tooling up production capabilities to support the SSC integrator as a new material supplier for the skirt fabricator.
The Cognitive Reasoner for Electronic Warfare Systems (CREWS) applies artificial intelligence signal processing to quickly classify complex, highly agile threat signals based on functional characteristics learned from the observed, possibly incomplete, waveform data. Research Associates of Syracuse (RAS) provides innovative signal processing solutions to challenging Electronic Warfare/Electronic Intelligence (EW/ELINT) problems. Initial targeted applications are Block 2 and 3 versions of AN/SLQ-32. CREWS technology is expected to reduce significantly (or even eliminate) reliance on threat libraries for emitter classification, which lowers maintenance cost and improves threat awareness in complex emitter environments. Phase I demonstrated accurate performance of selected machine learning classifiers trained using limited real radar data. Phase II is developing and demonstrating a full cognitive processing prototype using more extensive radar threat datasets. RAS seeks prime contractor support to integrate CREWS software into EW systems.
To address the Navy need for fast, affordable, and reliable tunable notch filters at X-band frequencies, Physical Optics Corporation (POC) proposed to develop a new Tunable, Rapid, Electronically Controlled X-band (T-REX) notch filter, based on a resonating RF structure utilizing ferroelectric-based capacitors for ultrafast-frequency tuning. The innovation in the resonating RF structure provides a large tunable range by using tunable capacitors to quickly (<50 ns) change the impedance to shift the operational frequency. As a result, the initial T-REX Phase I protoype filters offer notch attenuation >-40dB within the 8.8 GHz to 12 GHz range, minimal passband insertion loss (<0.3 dB), and a notch bandwidth from 800 MHz to 1200 MHz with low reflected power (<10%), which directly addressed the Navy need for low-cost electronic warfare and military communications systems that suppress interference. In Phase II, POC will further optimize the T-REX filter design. POC will develop a fully functional prototype, covering the entire frequency range (from 8 GHz to 12 GHz) for demonstration and evaluation at a Navy facility, to reach technology readiness level (TRL)-6/-7.
To enable future compact, affordable, high-performance transmit/receive (T/R) modules, the Navy seeks to develop advanced, low SWaP-C, high-density capacitors for power conversion circuits for radar and electronic warfare transmitters. Among capacitor technologies available, multilayer ceramic capacitors (MLCCs) are receiving the most attention. However, commercially available MLCC-based capacitors suffer from limitations such as low energy density, poor temperature stability and high power loss. To meet Navy requirements, Bioenno Tech is developing a compact, affordable, novel class of high energy density, low-power-loss MLCCs based on nanocomposite dielectrics that are thermally stable over a wide temperature range . These MLCCs will achieve at least a two-fold increase in energy storage density without compromising performance parameters such as internal impedance, voltage rating, leakage current or reliability.