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US Army seeks spectrum analysis capability, eyes EWPMT integration

US Army officials are in the midst of developing requirements for a spectrum analyser (Spec A) capability focused on identifying electromagnetic spectrum signatures and threats at the operational and tactical level, with plans to transition those requirements into a viable programme of record.

“For years, our spectrum managers have been clamouring for a programme of record spectrum analyser,” said Colonel Dan Holland, the electronic warfare capability manager at the Army Cyber Center of Excellence. Ongoing requirements development work will support efforts to close operational gaps in mission command, command post survivability, and signature management requirements, Col Holland said.

“The Spec A capability that we are pursuing will be a portable piece of equipment deployed in a [tactical operations centre] or on a mobile platform to provide situational awareness by monitoring and analysing the electromagnetic environment,” he said during an AFCEA International-sponsored webinar on the army’s future multidomain operations strategy. Service officials are targeting the third quarter of fiscal year (FY) 2021 to have the initiative mature enough to draft informal programme proposals to army leaders at US Army Futures Command, Col Holland said.

As envisioned, the proposed Spec A system would allow army EW personnel “to monitor and analyse the [electromagnetic environment] for signals of interest and sources of interference [and] enable commanders to visualise their [electromagnetic environment] signature”, according to service documents.

A US Army electronic warfare officer with the 103rd Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) discusses the measurements on a handheld spectrum analyser collected during combat operations in Iraq.  (US Army )

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