US homeland security department funds Echodyne research into MESA to detect small unmanned vehicles

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) has awarded USD545,009 to Echodyne Corporation to continue research and development on new radar systems using metamaterials. DHS awarded the funds through a Phase 5 Other Transaction Agreement with S&T’s Silicon Valley Innovation Program (SVIP).

S&T will begin integrating the radar with other sensors into a system-of-systems that will be tested later this year to evaluate its ability to detect and track small unmanned aircraft systems.

Previous Echodyne efforts with SVIP have focused on the development of an innovative Metamaterials Electronically Scanning Array (MESA) radar for use in a variety of border security applications. MESA uses metamaterials to build a new architecture for fully electronic scanning radar systems with high fidelity and fast directional changes—with much lower cost, size, weight, and power.

“The Echodyne radar was a key sensor in the successful U.S. Customs and Border Protection Autonomous Surveillance Towers Program,” said SVIP Transition Director Ron McNeal. “This Phase 5 award will allow S&T and DHS to explore new use cases for the MESA radar in Counter-Unmanned Aircraft Systems scenarios. This is a great opportunity to explore new applications of this proven technology and increase the impact of SVIP’s investment to reach more DHS users.”

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