Unmanned Vehicles

State-of-the-art wireless to address challenges in unpredictable RF environments

Today a high capacity broadband wireless digital communication link is a lifeline to carry Command, Control and Communication (C3) between the UV and Control Station. Historically, because of technology constraints, unmanned systems used to have multiple wireless links. In a typical setup, narrowband datalink was used for command and control and a separate analog downlink was used to transmit images.

As the functionality of the UV’s are rapidly expanding, it is necessary to have highly reliable, low latency, high capacity datalink for command, control and 4K video. Because of its importance, a lot of research work is being done in the industry to leverage the benefits of MIMO to address the RF challenges and develop new IP based networking architectures like Mobile Adhoc Networks for extending the range and support Beyond Line of Sight (BLOS) operations. 

Smart Radio for Unmanned Vehicles

Doodle Labs is proud to introduce the state-of-the-art Smart Radio to the unmanned systems market. Smart Radio is built upon the foundation of best COFDM technology, native IP architecture, data security and advanced Mesh capabilities to provide wireless C3 links in the harshest of RF and physical environments. Smart Radio is developed with carefully selected features based upon many years of experience supplying the radios for the DoD.

The Smart Radio is a tiny, full-featured MIMO radio and a mesh router. It has an Ethernet interface to allow easy integration into any system. With up to 1W of RF power, 2×2 MIMO technology and high Rx sensitivity, the Smart Radio can transmit large amounts of data from over 20 km away. The Smart Radio’s interchangeable flexible frequency architecture can satisfy customers’ requirements in any market or country. The Smart Radios are available in many frequency bands up to 4 GHz, allowing customers to switch the operating bands by simply swapping the radio.

Key Features 

 PERFORMANCE RF
  • Interference resistant COFDM for improved link quality in busy RF environments
  • Adaptive radio modulations from DSSS up to 64QAM and continuous per packet optimization to maximize link performance in dynamic environments
  • Software defined channel size of 5~40 MHz for efficient re-use of spectrum
  • Software defined operating frequency band for global applications
  • Exceptional Multipath and NLOS performance
  • Convolutional Coding, Forward error correction (FEC), Ack-retransmits for robust data transmission over noisy spectrum
  • Maximal Ratio Combining and beam forming for diversity antenna gain
  • Spatial Multiplexing for enhanced throughput
  • Space Time Block Coding for increased robustness
  • Time Division Duplexing (TDD) for bi-directional traffic
  • Distributed control with CSMA/CA to auto balance the network for asymmetric up/down traffic and throughput requirements of each node
  • Long range (up to 20 km) with adjustable RF power to reduce interference
  • Fast handoff for mobile applications

PERFORMANCE NETWORKING

  • End-to-end IP architecture for distributing unicast and multicast traffic
  • High data throughput up to 100 Mbps
  • Self-healing/self-forming mobile mesh for highly reliable network with redundancy
  • Advanced QOS and multimedia traffic prioritizations for low latency Command and Control as well as 4K video streaming on the same link

  • Multiple network access and authentication methods
  • AES128, 128-bit WPA2-PSK encryption for over the air data
  • Firewall – MAC/IP/protocol/port filtering for restricted access control
  • Embedded network management GUI with diagnostics
  • Supported Protocols – DNS, HTTP, HTTPS, IP, ICMP, NTP, TCP, UDP, RADIUS, DHCP, VLAN, STP/RSTP, VPN, IPSec, L2TP, GRE

MOBILE MESH NETWORK (MANET)

  • Self-healing/self-forming mobile mesh
  • High scalability with unlimited nodes in a single network
  • Support for all topologies, including infrastructure, adhoc, PtP, PtmP, and Repeater modes

ADDITIONAL FEATURES

  • Very small size, weight, and power (SWaP) for mobile applications
  • Ethernet interface to allow easy integration into various applications
  • Available in 100 MHz – 4 GHz frequency range in form factor compatible models
  • Regulatory compliance for unwanted spurious emissions
  • Rugged construction, Industrial temperature range (-40C to +85C)
  • OTA firmware upgrade
  • Field proven and deployed in critical applications where failure is not an option
  • COTS – Commercial off the Shelf, Extended lifespan with long planned availability
 

C3 for Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

A UAV, commonly known as a drone is an exciting new technology. With the technology advancements, small UAVs are now easily accessible and thus enabling numerous new applications in civilian and commercial domains. 

In a typical UAV application, a small SWaP (Space, Weight and Power) are the demanding requirements for on-boarding the equipment on flyer. Choice of operating frequency plays an important role to balance the range, power consumption and the weight. At lower frequencies, the range is longer, power consumption is lower while antenna size/weight are larger. In many parts of the world, allowed RF power is higher. So even though it may seem counterintuitive, use of higher frequency with higher gain antennas may provide longer range.

Doodle Labs offers an extensive line of tiny radio modules with best-in-class performance for many frequency bands. These radios are successfully used by many UAV manufacturers. Customers have achieved range of up to 30 miles (50 Km) radius and able to stream 4K quality surveillance video.

C3 for Unmanned Ground Vehicles

The Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV) go places where humans cannot. Predominantly these remote controlled UGV’s are used to replace humans in hazardous situations. Examples are natural disaster response in earthquake struck buildings and to enhance police and military operations. These robotics missions need dependable bi-directional communication that can penetrate deep into buildings and dynamically adapt to the changing RF conditions. 

In the UGV application, choice of operating frequency plays an important role to balance the range and penetration. At lower frequencies, the range is longer, and penetration is deeper. However, signal loss due to the Fresnel zone obstruction plays a detrimental role. The MIMO technology provides an advantage for handling the multipath reflections from the inside of the buildings. A small SWaP (Space, Weight and Power) are important requirements for handheld controller units. Doodle Labs’ high performance, MIMO radio modules are successfully used by many UGV manufacturers. With Doodle Labs radios, customers have achieved NLOS range of up to 300 meters (1000 feet) and stream 4K quality surveillance video. 

C3 for Unmanned Surface Vehicles

Unmanned surface vehicles (USV) or Autonomous Surface Vehicles (ASV) are remote controlled vehicles that operate on the surface of the water. USVs are valuable in oceanography and military applications as they are more capable and cheaper to operate. 

Ability to operate wirelessly over water and low power are critical requirements. Doodle Labs MIMO radios can harness the multipath signals reflected on the water surface to increase the reliability and robustness of communication. What was previously a cause for interference is now an asset. With self-healing self-forming mesh network capability, Smart Radio is a flexible solution for multi-vessel operations.

Doodle Labs Products for Unmanned Systems

With a focus on mobile applications, Doodle Labs offers a comprehensive line of wireless products for Unmanned Vehicles market. The product portfolio includes radio modules for many different frequencies and with different interfaces to easily integrate with any system architecture.

Description Model Info
Industrial Wi-Fi transceivers, long range with low SWaP 11ac and 11n Series
Smart Radio platform with Ethernet interface RM Series
MIMO Broadband Transceivers with miniPCIe interface NM Series
Frequency shifters for CPU boards with embedded WiFi HM Series