IARPA Awards $14M For Tools To Decipher Radio RF Signals Using ML, AI, DSP

The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) has awarded BAE Systems a $14M contract to develop tools to decipher radio frequency (RF) signals in order to quickly and accurately help secure mission-critical information. It’s expected that the technology will provide enhanced situational awareness, help to target threats, and secure communications against malicious attacks.

The contract – a part of the Securing Compartmented Information with Smart Radio Systems (SCISRS) program – will require the development of advanced machine learning, artificial intelligence technology, and traditional digital signal processing techniques (DSP). 

The SCISRS program is seeking to ensure data security with the development of smart radio techniques that can automatically detect and identify suspicious signals and other radio frequency (RF) anomalies. The specific types of anomalies include hidden, altered, or mimicked signals, and abnormal unintended emissions.

“In uncontrolled environments, secure communications can be jeopardized by RF signals that are almost impossible to manually find and identify in real-time. Our technology will identify RF signals in increasingly crowded electromagnetic spectrum environments, providing commercial or military users with greater automated situational awareness of their operating environment,” stated Scott Kuzdeba, chief scientist at BAE Systems’ FAST Labs research and development organization. 

The work to be performed will combine BAE Systems’ autonomy portfolio. And also make use of its experience gained from its work on DARPA’s Radio Frequency Machine Learning System (RFMLS) program. Subcontractors under the program will include PFP Cybersecurity, Intelligent Automation, Signal Processing Technologies, and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.