Air Force Wonders Whether Industry has CLAS

The Air Force Research Lab has queried industry to see if there are companies capable of maturing technology for a conformal load-bearing antenna structure (CLAS) that long-endurance remotely piloted aircraft could carry to detect and track dismounted individuals. AFRL officials envision CLAS as “extremely large active-phased-array apertures” integrated into the wing or fuselage skin of relatively small RPA, according to the lab’s solicitation. “It is anticipated that the extraordinary size of these arrays will provide sensitivity beyond what can be achieved with conventional apertures in order to detect and discriminate dismounts,” states the document. AFRL seeks to identify CLAS concepts and the research needed to enable an aerial demonstration of an experimental dismount moving target indication (DMTI) radar system within the next four years. AFRL wants industry feedback by Sept. 22.