COTS phased-array radar antenna wins DIU contract for possible use on U.S. Navy shipsNews
August 07, 2020
HAWTHORNE, Calif. Radar antenna maker ThinKom Solutions has won a seven-month contract from the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) to test and evaluate one of the company’s commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) aeronautical phased-array antenna systems as a solution for next-generation communications on U.S. Navy ships, for instance on the DDG-1000 naval destroyer.
According to information from the company, ThinKom will deliver a ThinAir Ka2517 Ka-band antenna system for onboard testing to meet U.S. Navy requirements for Multi-Domain Tactical Communications (MDTC). The company will strive to demonstrate the capability to be integrated onto a U.S. Navy ship, while a concurrent design study will evaluate performance modifications requested by the Navy.
Bill Milroy, chief technology officer for ThinKom Solutions, says of the antennas: “Our VICTS phased-array antennas are also uniquely capable -- and proven -- to provide uncompromising emission controls to meet the most stringent requirements for precision sidelobe control and grating lobe suppression, which are critical factors on a modern naval ship. Additionally, VICTS arrays, operating across the spectrum from C-band to W-band, have been verified by multiple third-party system integrators to be RF-compatible with low radar cross section and low observable platforms and installations. Sidelobes are suppressed to enhance the low-probability-of-detection/interception and antijamming characteristics of the antenna, even when intentionally scanning to low elevation angles.”
The ThinKom Ka2517 terminals -- which are already in full production -- are currently being used on a fleet of U.S. government aircraft.