National Instruments (NI)
Austin, TX 78759-3504 https://www.ni.com/en-us.html
By Haydn Nelson, NI and Justin Moll, Pixus Technologies
On the increasingly connected battlefield, the electromagnetic spectrum is a critical resource that can mean the difference between victory and defeat. In recent conflicts, simply geolocating the source of enemy communications signals gave a competitive advantage to the victor. On the battlefield, software-defined radio (SDR) is used for sensors, communications, and electronic warfare – in short, it’s almost everywhere. SDR’s single-technology architecture and reprogrammable nature make it ideal for a broad range of applications.
Before any military technology can be fielded, it must undergo a barrage of test and measurement (T&M) scenarios to ensure its operability. The importance of these evaluation systems and their criticality is simple yet profound: The lives of warfighters are dependent on them. In recent years, varying demands and challenges have pushed manufacturers to innovate. Military T&M systems are going digital, becoming software-defined, and are undergoing widespread standardization right alongside so much of the technology used by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) today. This inexorable march then prompts the question of what takes priority with the DoD: ensuring compatibility with reliable legacy systems or moving forward with the wave of standardization?
With every second that ticks by, the amount of data gathered by the U.S. military grows, as does the desire and need by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) to extract and use this data to form actionable intelligence. This situation directly results in an intense demand for military technology manufacturers to quickly produce both software and hardware capable of first processing the zettabytes of data that exist on Internet of Things (IoT) devices and then accurately analyzing its value. Successful gathering, processing, and analyzing will effectively change warfare as it is understood today.
Test engineers spend as much as 50 percent of their time (or even more in some cases) actively dealing with obsolescence in their test program sets. Read about different solutions in the...