The Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) is looking for innovations to deliver information exchange capabilities that are resilient in a highly-dynamic operating environment where there are significant challenges from congestion and contention, such as jamming.

The Wireless Communications, Networking and Information Theory Competition is interested in ideas in the following areas:

  • novel communication techniques. In this challenge area solutions may include:
    • exploitation of new parts of the EM Spectrum not traditionally used for defence communications. Those currently used tend to be focused in high frequency to super high frequency bands of the EM spectrum
    • non-traditional techniques – such as acoustic, magneto-inductive, quantum
    • multi-function systems – such as combined electronic sensing and communications
  • novel coding and modulation. Solutions may include:
    • techniques for improving communications performance
    • reducing probability of detection or interception
    • enhanced synchronisation schemes
    • source coding (compression) techniques
    • adaptive link layer techniques
    • ultra low-rate coding techniques
    • short block length efficient coding design
    • error detection and correction
    • quantum information theory
    • physical layer security
  • novel networking techniques: solutions may include:
    • network management for very dynamic networks
    • network control plane
    • novel routing / forwarding approaches to handle mobility
    • interfaces between network control planes
    • high density, low trust networks
    • interoperability with civilian forces, and allied nations

On behalf of the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) there is £500k available for this DASA competition, with the expectation that between 5 to 10 proposals will be funded.

Whilst we are interested in innovations at Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) up to prototype demonstrators, the end of the project is hoping to deliver an array of technologies in the TRL 3 to 6 range.

A series of 1-2-1 sessions will be available for those interested in discussing the challenge and their ideas with the project team. These slots must be booked by 5pm on 16th February.

To register for a 1-2-1 slot on 18 February click here.

To register for a 1-2-1 slot on 23 February click here.

This competition seeks innovations to demonstrate information exchange capabilities that are resilient to the challenges of the deployed military environment – often referred to as a congested and contested environment. These challenges include:

  • mobility – nearly all network entities in the deployed environment, ranging from single vehicles to large formations, are highly mobile and this mobility is not always predictable in advance
  • spectrum access – the electromagnetic (EM) spectrum is a shared resource. Operating alongside allies and civil populations brings significant problems for spectrum planning and access
  • demand for information – our forces increasingly depend on information exchange, which is driving a demand for ever greater communications capacity
  • adversary threat – just as our communications are the essential enabler of Information Advantage, they could also allow an adversary to detect and attack us

Proposals for funding to meet these challenges must be submitted by Wednesday 7 April 2021 at midday BST via the DASA submission service for which you will be required to register. Suppliers must also submit a Supplier Assurance Questionnaire (SAQ) on the Supplier Cyber Protection Portal.

The total funding available for Phase 1 of this competition is £500k (ex VAT). There is no upper-limit per proposal for this competition, but we are expecting to fund 5 to 10 proposals. Suppliers may submit proposals that answer 1 or more of the challenge areas as appropriate, and may also submit multiple proposals for multiple challenges. If successful, contracts will be awarded for a maximum duration of 8 months.