The Defense Department is soliciting proposals under its Small Business Innovation Research program for developing a distance-measurement imaging system that can capture 3-D/4-D geospatial data for U.S. Army intelligence and surveillance missions.
DoD said it is looking for passive systems due to the disadvantages of current technologies used to measure sensor-to-object distance, which actively transmit acoustic and electromagnetic pulses.
According to DoD, these active sensors can be detected and targeted by enemy forces, are not ideal for remote and on-the-move deployments due to greater power requirements, experience reduced system sensitivity due to atmospheric conditions and require longer processing time for the resulting image.
Mary Miller, the Army’s deputy assistant secretary for research and technology, has testified last year on the need for passive systems to protect the combat forces, assist mission command and guide mission modeling and training programs.
The technology requirements include near-real-time processing for images of more than 4 megapixels, collection of up to 4 kilometers of distance information, portability, low power requirement, undetectable and can be installed into stationary, mounted/dismounted or airborne platforms.
The program has three phases including 1) research, feasibility testing, initial development and demonstration; 2) final design work, prototype production and testing, demonstration of full system deployment and delivery of complete working prototype; and 3) commercial opportunities and other military applications.