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DARPA Selects BAE Systems to Advance Antenna Designs

Leveraging Quantum Sensing Produces Huge Advances

The US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has selected BAE Systems to advance quantum technology and revolutionise RF sensing, breaking constraints on antenna design that have persisted for over a century, the company announced on 17 November.

Leveraging quantum sensing can reduce size, and increase sensitivity and accessible bandwidth by several orders of magnitude. “While still in the early development phase, quantum sensing relies on fundamentally different physics than conventional antennas. This may allow us to circumvent traditional aperture design limits for sensitivity and size,” explained Julia MacDonough, Product Line Director. “As a result of these programs, BAE Systems’ FAST Labs will be at the forefront of quantum sensing to support the warfighter.

A quantum approach to aperture development decouples the size of the antenna from the wavelength of the incoming signal. This could potentially reduce the size and number of antennas on US DoD platforms. Awarded earlier this year, three quantum aperture-related contracts, which total $6.5 million (€5.7 million), include work as a prime contractor on Quantum Apertures Technical Area 2 and teaming with ColdQuanta in both Technical Area 1 of Quantum Apertures and the Science of Atomic Vapors for New Technologies (SAVaNT) programme.

 

Harnessing quantum technologies can bring abut immense advances in antenna design and capability. (Image via BAE Systems)

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Publish date

11/17/2021

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