DARPA Launches Research Initiative on Low-Noise, Compact Microwave Oscillator Development; Gordon Keeler Quoted

1 min read

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is exploring advances in non-linear optics and integrated photonics in support of the development of microwave oscillators that potentially meet the compact-size, tuning and robustness requirements while staying in ultra-low-noise level. 

DARPA said Tuesday that the Generating RF with Photonic Oscillators for Low Noise research program will be two-pronged, with the first area of focus being the prototyping, testing and maturation of a compact microwave oscillator capability with low phase noise.

The fundamental limits of photonic microwave generation will be the focus of the second research area. An order of magnitude leap in size, phase noise or frequency span will be sought from research teams.

“By implementing advances in photonic microwave generation with integrated photonics, we see a pathway to create a significant leap in microwave oscillator capability, while simultaneously realizing characteristics not found in today’s products: very low phase noise, compact form factor, ultra-wideband tuning, and environmental robustness,” said Gordon Keeler, program manager at DARPA's Microsystems Technology Office.

The agency will hold a virtual proposers day on April 8 to answer questions from potential offerors and provide them with more information about the GRYPHON initiative. Proposers will also be given an opportunity to highlight their capabilities and form potential partnerships.

DARPA is expected to release a broad agency announcement on the Beta SAM website before the proposers day.

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