Discover the applications that will determine the next generation of electronics.

Ultra-Low Power Sensors

The Near Zero Power RF and Sensor Operations (N-ZERO) aims to develop the technological foundation for persistent, event-driven sensing capabilities. The resulting sensors could remain dormant, with near-zero power consumption, until awakened by an external trigger or stimulus. If successful, N-ZERO could extend the life of remotely deployed communications and environmental sensors—also known as unattended ground sensors (UGS)—from weeks or months to years, with implications for the Internet of Things. Read more

Inherent Chip-Scale Security

The System Security Integrated Through Hardware and Firmware (SSITH) program seeks to secure DoD and commercial electronic systems against software-enabled threats by developing novel hardware/firmware security architectures and hardware design methodologies. The program will investigate flexible hardware architectures that adapt to and limit the impact of new cybersecurity attacks while maintaining the performance and power required for system operation. Read more

Dynamic Spectrum Allocation

The Spectrum Collaboration Challenge (SC2) aims to ensure that the exponentially growing number of military and civilian wireless devices have full access to the crowded electromagnetic spectrum. Competitors will reimagine spectrum access strategies and develop a new wireless paradigm in which radio networks autonomously collaborate to avoid interference and maximize efficient spectrum usage. SC2 will develop breakthrough capabilities by taking advantage of recent advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning and the expanding capacities of software-defined radios. Read more

Supply Chain Security

DARPA’s Supply Chain Hardware Integrity for Electronics Defense (SHIELD) program aims to eliminate counterfeit integrated circuits from the electronics supply chain by making counterfeiting too complex and time-consuming to be cost effective. SHIELD will combine NSA-level encryption, sensors, near-field power, and communications into a microscopic-scale 100 micrometer x 100 micrometer chip capable of insertion into the packaging of an integrated circuit. Since counterfeit electronic components pose a threat to the integrity and reliability of both commercial and DoD systems, SHIELD fulfills a large, pressing, and evolving need for anti-counterfeit technologies. Read more