Navy chooses Mercury Defense for RF embedded computing modules for airborne EW training

RIDGECREST, Calif., 19 Nov. 2015. U.S. Navy electronic warfare (EW) experts needed specialized RF embedded computing modules for airborne EW training. They found their solution from the Mercury Systems Inc. Mercury Defense Systems subsidiary in Cypress, Calif.

Navy chooses Mercury Defense for RF embedded computing modules for airborne EW training
Navy chooses Mercury Defense for RF embedded computing modules for airborne EW training
RIDGECREST, Calif., 19 Nov. 2015. U.S. Navy electronic warfare (EW) experts needed specialized RF embedded computing modules for airborne EW training. They found their solution from the Mercury Systems Inc. Mercury Defense Systems subsidiary in Cypress, Calif.

Officials of the Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division at China Lake Naval Weapons Station in Ridgecrest, Calif., announced a $41.8 million 5-year contract to Mercury on Wednesday for 200 miniaturized I/J band digital radio frequency memory modulators (Mini DRFMs), as well as repairs and evaluations.

The Mini DRFM is a state-of-the-art electronic and radio frequency device that produces high-fidelity threat simulator systems for test and evaluation and training missions, Navy officials say.

Mercury Defense Systems, formerly KOR Electronics, designs and builds wideband and narrowband digital receivers and digital frequency discriminators (DFDs), which also are known as instantaneous frequency measurement devices (IFMs).

Related: Navy and Air Force choose DRFM jammers from Mercury Systems to help spoof enemy radar

Mercury's DRFM designs include field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs), analog-digital converters, high-speed interfaces and board design, signal processing techniques, Virtex-5 FPGAs, and VITA-41 (VXS) and VITA-46 interfaces, company officials say.

DRFM technology provides coherent time delay of RF signals in EW, radar, and other RF and microwave applications; and produce coherent deception jamming to a radar system. These devices enable users to replay captured radar pulses with a small delay, which can make false targets appear to move.

DRFMs can modulate captured radar pulse data in amplitude, frequency, and phase to provide other affects, such as adding Doppler shift so range and range rate trackers will correlate in the radar. Captured pulses also can be replayed many times to fool radar systems in seeing many targets. DRFMs also can produce arbitrary waveforms from a file.

This week's contract involves Mercury's mini DRFM technology, which involves smaller packages, faster responses, and vast volumes of low-latency compute power, company officials say.

Related: Mercury to provide Navy with advanced airborne electronic warfare jamming training devices

Mercury's latest-generation DRFM technology produces modules as thin as 0.44 inches -- about half the width of standard modules -- and capitalizes on direct digital synthesizer (DDS) local oscillator (LO) technology.

DDS delivers sub-microsecond tuning speeds over a wide bandwidth, and eliminates or compensates for associated digital noise using advanced circuit design and materials, IMA topology and construction, and detailed design simulation, Mercury officials say.

On this contract Mercury will do the work in Cypress, Calif., and should be finished by November 2020. For more information contact Mercury Defense Systems online at www.mrcy.com/defense_systems, or the Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division-China Lake at www.navair.navy.mil/nawcwd/Command/about/china_lake.

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