BAE Systems Develops Radiation-Hardened Software Defined Radios for Space Applications

BAE Systems has announced the delivery of the first shipment of its next-generation radiation-hardened software defined radios (SDR) powered by its RAD5545 computer, to Lockheed Martin Space. The radios provide spacecrafts with the performance, availability, reliability and on-board signals processing capacity needed to support future space missions - from planetary exploration to communications, national security, surveillance, and weather missions. The SDRs are ideal for any mission requiring reconfigurable radio processing. They can be easily modified to address various reconfigurable processing solutions.

BAE Systems’ software defined radio is anchored by the RAD5545 single board computer (SBC), providing the most advanced radiation-hardened quad core general purpose processing solution available today to address future threats on a variety of missions. The system leverages modular and standard building blocks including a SpaceVPX chassis and backplane electrical connectors, Serial RapidIO® and Spacewire interfaces, and a fully supported expansion port for a custom interface card.

Adhering to industry standards, this flexible and adaptable architecture supports reconfiguration for other missions by simply swapping out SpaceVPX modules, a highly desirable feature in today’s space hardware.

BAE Systems’ next-generation software defined radios, represent a significant advance in high reliability reconfigurable electronics systems. Increased processing power, and a radiation-hardened design combine for a product line that can enable increased mission flexibility.

The RAD5545 SBC delivers exponential improvements in size, speed, and power efficiency over its predecessor single board computers. BAE Systems also offers a suite of radiation-hardened Serial RapidIO network products that complement the RAD5545 SBC and allow the user to efficiently manage and route data through a system. Products include the RADNET® 1848-PS, an 18-Port RapidIO Packet Switch, the RADNET 1616-XP Crosspoint, a protocol agnostic SerDes signal circuit switch and replicator, and the RADNET SRIO-EP, a Serial RapidIO endpoint.

The RAD5545 SDR was developed at BAE Systems' sites in Merrimack, NH, and Manassas, VA, and is produced in Manassas.