New Directional Communication Link Provides Longer Range and Anti-Jamming Capability

Rockwell Collins recently performed a series of demonstrations for prime U.S. Department of Defense contractors and government research laboratories to showcase a new, compact directional communication link that can block out jamming and send signals 10 times farther than existing omnidirectional systems. Rockwell Collins has significantly improved directional technology by reducing size and weight, lowering cost and making the product available to other contractors for use in their own products.

Two scenarios were demonstrated to show how the technology solves current challenges in communications. In the first scenario, the operator attempted to receive full-motion video but an interfering signal turns on and the link is lost. The signal is then re-shaped by the receiver to block out the interferer and regain the link. In the second scenario, two full-motion video links are received simultaneously from different directions. Receiving signals from multiple directions simultaneously improves spectrum utilization and aids in network discovery for directional communications. Each scenario was performed in a different frequency band highlighting the product’s adaptability.

The communication link will be ideal for use within military unmanned aerial systems (UAS) or smaller helicopters but could also be used within products for radar systems, satellite communications and commercial UAS.

Using technology developed under the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and the Arrays at Commercial Timescales (ACT) program, the new directional communication link can point up to eight directions at the same time while simultaneously receiving a variety of signals. Users can block out the jamming and still receive the message by changing the filtering frequency as needed.