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Development of an Improved Analysis Tool for Modeling Communication Systems with Realistic Hardware Constraints, 10-9393

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Principal Investigator
Thomas C. Untermeyer
Ben A. Abbott
Myron L. Moodie

Inclusive Dates: 04/23/03 - 08/23/03

Background - Future military communications systems development will most likely require some form of compliance with the United States Department of Defense (DoD) Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS) program. The JTRS program defines a requirement for development of a programmable, modular, multi-band, multi-mode radio that would eventually replace over 200 radio types in the DoD inventory. These radios currently operate over different frequency ranges and utilize a variety of different modulation techniques, coding formats, and protocols. The JTRS program, as currently specified, represents a very complex communications architecture that will make it very difficult to develop realistic and practical systems with existing technology. The mandate to make programs (such as the Enhanced Range Application Program [EnRAP]) compatible with the JTRS program adds another level of complexity. The computer-based analysis tool developed during this program directly addresses the current and future needs of our clients by allowing us to overlay the EnRAP and JTRS requirements with environmental and hardware/software constraints in order to determine the best way to incorporate the JTRS requirements. This same analysis tool will also provide the framework for addressing the JTRS requirement imposed on other programs besides EnRAP.

Approach - During this program, the project team performed a survey of existing applicable hardware components in order to collect appropriate operating parameter characteristics. In parallel, the project team used a software package to develop a computer model that captured desired system specifications for a particular problem along with a general extensible database of existing and known commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) JTRS solutions. The model can use the results of the hardware component survey, the EnRAP requirements, the software constraints, the modulation schemes available, and possible channel conditions to determine solutions for various scenarios and system specifications.

Accomplishments - The research accomplished by this program has provided immediate benefits to the Institute by not only increasing the probability of capturing the EnRAP contract, but also identifying additional funding opportunities with other programs. The analysis tool, while not fully populated, has sufficient detail to show to potential customers as a way to leverage the capture of externally funded projects.

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