DARPA scientists seek next generation of wireless data networking

By John Keller

ARLINGTON, Va. - Scientists at the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in Arlington, Va., are going to industry in attempts to create the next generation in tactical wireless networking.

DARPA officials outlined the project called Control-Based Mobile Ad-Hoc Networking-or CBMANET-in a broad agency announcement to industry (BAA 05-42).

Companies that want to participate have slightly more than a year to respond to the BAA, but must have full proposals in for first selection by noon Nov. 2. Managing the project is DARPA’s Advanced Technology Office.

Current research in mobile ad-hoc networking revolves around establishing standard Internet protocol routing for wireless applications in static and dynamic topologies with an eye toward increasing dynamics by node motion or other factors.

A control-based network allocates wireless network resources to meet user goals and operator constraints. Examples include resource availability, fairness, connectivity, quality of service assurance, mission-adaptive multilevel precedence and priority, and operating the network in the presence of jamming, intercept, or detection.

DARPA wants to take research to the next level by developing a revolutionary mobile ad-hoc network prototype that improves effective performance by an order of magnitude or more relative to the current state of the art.

From industry, DARPA scientists particularly are interested in new software that implements a revolutionary CBMANET network stack and services.

In the first phase of the program, companies chose to participate must deliver high-fidelity software models for evaluation. In the second phase they must deliver an integrated software/hardware solution for field demonstrations and evaluation.

Specifically, the integrated solution will consist of the performer software, a computing platform of the performer’s choice, a specified physical layer, and a suitably equipped field vehicle.

Proposers may submit a full proposal in accordance with the instruction in the Proposer Information Pamphlet (PIP), which is available online at

To be considered during the initial round of funding, full proposals must be submitted to DARPA, 3701 North Fairfax Drive, Arlington, Va., 22203-1714 (Attn.: BAA05-42) by Nov 2.

DARPA will judge proposals based on technical approach, system architecture; security and survivability, management approach and past experience, contribution and relevance to the DARPA mission, and cost.

For questions, contact DARPA’s J. Christopher Ramming by e-mail at

More information is available online at, or on the DARPA CBMANET Website at

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