Preview: Subterranean Challenge Urban Circuit (Virtual)

This video provides a preview of the qualification environment for the Virtual Urban Circuit of the Subterranean (SubT) Challenge. In the SubT Challenge, teams deploy autonomous ground and aerial systems to attempt to map, identify, and report artifacts along courses in underground environments. The artifacts represent items a first responder or service member may encounter in underground environments. The SubT Challenge Systems and Virtual competitions aim to create a community of multidisciplinary teams from wide-ranging fields to foster breakthrough technologies in autonomy, perception, networking, and mobility for underground environments.

Preview: Subterranean Challenge Urban Circuit (Systems)

In the Subterranean (SubT) Challenge, teams deploy autonomous ground and aerial systems to attempt to map, identify, and report artifacts along competition courses in underground environments. The artifacts represent items a first responder or service member may encounter in unknown underground sites. This video provides a preview of the to-be-announced Urban Circuit event location.

2019 SubT Challenge Virtual Tunnel Circuit Compilation

Eight teams developed, tested, and submitted software-based solutions for simulation-based evaluation in the Subterranean Challenge Virtual Tunnel Circuit. The video is a compilation of teams’ solutions.

Meet the Teams of DARPA’s AlphaDogfight Trials!

DARPA has selected eight teams to compete in the AlphaDogfight Trials, a virtual competition designed to demonstrate advanced artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms that can perform simulated within-visual-range air combat maneuvering, colloquially known as a dogfight. Get the details: https://go.usa.gov/xpqtN.

The Trials aim to energize and expand a base of AI developers and potential proposers prior to an anticipated algorithm-development solicitation to be released under DARPA’s Air Combat Evolution (ACE) program (https://www.darpa.mil/news-events/2019-05-08). Announced earlier this year, ACE seeks to automate air-to-air combat and build human trust in AI as a step toward improved human-machine teaming. DARPA’s vision is that with trusted AI able to manage lower-order operations, pilots could focus on higher-order strategic challenges such as orchestrating teams of unmanned aircraft across the battlespace under DARPA’s Mosaic Warfare concept (https://www.darpa.mil/work-with-us/darpa-tiles-together-a-vision-of-mosiac-warfare).

Highlights from the Spectrum Collaboration Challenge Championship Event

On October 23, 2019, ten teams of finalists gathered to compete one last time in the Championship Event of DARPA’s Spectrum Collaboration Challenge (SC2), a three-year competition designed to unlock the true potential of the radio frequency (RF) spectrum with artificial intelligence. DARPA held the Championship Event at Mobile World Congress 2019 Los Angeles in front of a live audience.

Team GatorWings from University of Florida took home the $2 million first prize, followed by MarmotE from Vanderbilt University in second with $1 million, and Zylinium, a start-up, in third with $750,000.

Throughout the competition, SC2 demonstrated how AI can help to meet spiking demand for spectrum. As program manager Paul Tilghman noted in his closing remarks from the SC2 stage: “Our competitors packed 3.5 times more wireless signals into the spectrum than we’re capable of today. Our teams outperformed static allocations and demonstrated greater performance than current wireless standards like LTE. The paradigm of collaborative AI and wireless is here to stay and will propel us from spectrum scarcity to spectrum abundance.”

Learn more about SC2 at: https://www.spectrumcollaborationchallenge.com/.

#DARPASC2

Meet the Teams of DARPA’s AlphaDogfight Trials!

DARPA has selected eight teams to compete in the AlphaDogfight Trials, a virtual competition designed to demonstrate advanced artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms that can perform simulated within-visual-range air combat maneuvering, colloquially known as a dogfight. Get the details: https://go.usa.gov/xpqtN.

The Trials aim to energize and expand a base of AI developers and potential proposers prior to an anticipated algorithm-development solicitation to be released under DARPA’s Air Combat Evolution (ACE) program (https://www.darpa.mil/news-events/2019-05-08). Announced earlier this year, ACE seeks to automate air-to-air combat and build human trust in AI as a step toward improved human-machine teaming. DARPA’s vision is that with trusted AI able to manage lower-order operations, pilots could focus on higher-order strategic challenges such as orchestrating teams of unmanned aircraft across the battlespace under DARPA’s Mosaic Warfare concept (https://www.darpa.mil/work-with-us/darpa-tiles-together-a-vision-of-mosiac-warfare).

ERI Summit 2019: Dr. Rich Uhlig, Managing Director, Intel Labs

From Labs to Impact

Announced in June 2017, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Electronics Resurgence Initiative (ERI) is a five-year, upwards of $1.5 billion investment in the future of domestic, U.S. government, and defense electronics systems. ERI is forging forward-looking collaborations to enable microelectronics progress through circuit specialization and to ensure secure DoD access to next-generation electronics technologies.

ERI currently encompasses 20 programs—organized into four thrusts—managed by 12 program managers. The 3D heterogeneous integration thrust is enabling tight incorporation of differing circuit components, including through the development of the first state of the art electrical interface standard supported by an open source reference design. The novel materials and devices thrust is delivering new materials technologies to the domestic manufacturing base, demonstrating the first commercial manufacture of resistive RAM devices integrated with carbon nanotube transistors in a silicon compatible process. The design and security thrust is accelerating delivery of specialized circuitry and creating new opportunities for the safe use of open-source IP, recently showing that unknown chip design flaws can be rapidly located. The specialization thrust is optimizing systems for commercial and defense functions, such as driving towards ASIC-level performance in runtime programmable processors. Building on the tradition of successful government-industry partnerships, these and other ERI programs will enable the United States to collaboratively innovate a 4th wave of microelectronics progress and to create a more specialized, secure, and heavily automated electronics industry that meets national defense and commercial needs.

Visit www.eri-summit.com for more details on the ERI Summit, including slide downloads.

SC2 Colosseum on the Move

After a week of preparation for cross-country deployment, Colosseum – the world’s most powerful RF channel emulator – is officially en route to Los Angeles, California! All 21 server racks containing 128 software defined radios, 320 FPGAs, 171 high-performance servers, thousands of cables, and a host of supporting equipment will make the more than 2,600-mile trek from Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab in Laurel, Maryland to Los Angeles over the next week. Colosseum’s final destination is the LA Convention Center for the 2019 Mobile World Congress Los Angeles conference and SC2’s Championship Event.

To learn more about Colosseum, visit

The Colosseum

DARPA OpFires Phase 1 Test Fires

DARPA’s Operational Fires (OpFires) program has reached a major program milestone, completing booster preliminary design review of an innovative two-stage tactical missile system. OpFires aims to develop and demonstrate a ground-launched hypersonic weapon system to engage critical, time-sensitive targets in contested environments.

The first two phases of the program focus on the propulsion technologies required to deliver diverse payloads a variety of ranges. Since Phase 1 contract awards last fall, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Exquadrum, and Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) have made critical discoveries in advanced rocket motor technology for the OpFires upper stage, completing more than 30 motor trials from subscale through full size. These advances put the program on track for booster critical design review in late 2020.

Exquadrum completed a full-scale, full-duration test fire Sept. 19, which marked the performer’s culminating event for Phase 1. SNC has targeted October to complete its Phase 1 testing, and Aerojet Rocketdyne completed six subscale tests in August. Development activities will continue under Phase 2, which will culminate with multiple hot/static fires targeted for late 2020.

DARPA anticipates awards later this year for the third phase of the OpFires program, which aims to develop an operational system design leveraging propulsion systems concepts developed under the first two phases of the program. Phase 3 will conclude with integrated end-to-end flight tests to begin in 2022.

https://www.darpa.mil/news-events/2019-10-04

DARPA OFFSET Program Calls for Fifth Swarm Sprints

DARPA’s OFFensive Swarm-Enabled Tactics (OFFSET) envisions swarms of 250 collaborative autonomous systems providing critical insights to small ground military units in urban areas where vertical structures, tight spaces, and limited sight lines constrain communications and mobility.

ERI Summit 2019: Real Time Machine Learning (RTML) – DARPA / NSF Collaboration

Mr. Andreas Olofsson, Program Manager, DARPA MTO
Dr. Sankar Basu, Program Director, National Science Foundation (NSF)

Announced in June 2017, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Electronics Resurgence Initiative (ERI) is a five-year, upwards of $1.5 billion investment in the future of domestic, U.S. government, and defense electronics systems. ERI is forging forward-looking collaborations to enable microelectronics progress through circuit specialization and to ensure secure DoD access to next-generation electronics technologies.

ERI currently encompasses 20 programs—organized into four thrusts—managed by 12 program managers. The 3D heterogeneous integration thrust is enabling tight incorporation of differing circuit components, including through the development of the first state of the art electrical interface standard supported by an open source reference design. The novel materials and devices thrust is delivering new materials technologies to the domestic manufacturing base, demonstrating the first commercial manufacture of resistive RAM devices integrated with carbon nanotube transistors in a silicon compatible process. The design and security thrust is accelerating delivery of specialized circuitry and creating new opportunities for the safe use of open-source IP, recently showing that unknown chip design flaws can be rapidly located. The specialization thrust is optimizing systems for commercial and defense functions, such as driving towards ASIC-level performance in runtime programmable processors. Building on the tradition of successful government-industry partnerships, these and other ERI programs will enable the United States to collaboratively innovate a 4th wave of microelectronics progress and to create a more specialized, secure, and heavily automated electronics industry that meets national defense and commercial needs.

Visit www.eri-summit.com for more details on the ERI Summit, including slide downloads.

ERI Summit 2019: Future Technology: Software Defined Hardware (SDH)

Dr. David Wentzlaff, Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering, Princeton University

Announced in June 2017, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Electronics Resurgence Initiative (ERI) is a five-year, upwards of $1.5 billion investment in the future of domestic, U.S. government, and defense electronics systems. ERI is forging forward-looking collaborations to enable microelectronics progress through circuit specialization and to ensure secure DoD access to next-generation electronics technologies.

ERI currently encompasses 20 programs—organized into four thrusts—managed by 12 program managers. The 3D heterogeneous integration thrust is enabling tight incorporation of differing circuit components, including through the development of the first state of the art electrical interface standard supported by an open source reference design. The novel materials and devices thrust is delivering new materials technologies to the domestic manufacturing base, demonstrating the first commercial manufacture of resistive RAM devices integrated with carbon nanotube transistors in a silicon compatible process. The design and security thrust is accelerating delivery of specialized circuitry and creating new opportunities for the safe use of open-source IP, recently showing that unknown chip design flaws can be rapidly located. The specialization thrust is optimizing systems for commercial and defense functions, such as driving towards ASIC-level performance in runtime programmable processors. Building on the tradition of successful government-industry partnerships, these and other ERI programs will enable the United States to collaboratively innovate a 4th wave of microelectronics progress and to create a more specialized, secure, and heavily automated electronics industry that meets national defense and commercial needs.

Visit www.eri-summit.com for more details on the ERI Summit, including slide downloads.

ERI Summit 2019: Circuit Realization at Faster Timescales (CRAFT)

Dr. Linton Salmon, Program Manager, DARPA MTO
Dr. Brucek Khailany, Director of ASIC and VLSI Research, NVIDIA

Announced in June 2017, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Electronics Resurgence Initiative (ERI) is a five-year, upwards of $1.5 billion investment in the future of domestic, U.S. government, and defense electronics systems. ERI is forging forward-looking collaborations to enable microelectronics progress through circuit specialization and to ensure secure DoD access to next-generation electronics technologies.

ERI currently encompasses 20 programs—organized into four thrusts—managed by 12 program managers. The 3D heterogeneous integration thrust is enabling tight incorporation of differing circuit components, including through the development of the first state of the art electrical interface standard supported by an open source reference design. The novel materials and devices thrust is delivering new materials technologies to the domestic manufacturing base, demonstrating the first commercial manufacture of resistive RAM devices integrated with carbon nanotube transistors in a silicon compatible process. The design and security thrust is accelerating delivery of specialized circuitry and creating new opportunities for the safe use of open-source IP, recently showing that unknown chip design flaws can be rapidly located. The specialization thrust is optimizing systems for commercial and defense functions, such as driving towards ASIC-level performance in runtime programmable processors. Building on the tradition of successful government-industry partnerships, these and other ERI programs will enable the United States to collaboratively innovate a 4th wave of microelectronics progress and to create a more specialized, secure, and heavily automated electronics industry that meets national defense and commercial needs.

Visit www.eri-summit.com for more details on the ERI Summit, including slide downloads.

ERI Summit 2019: Dr. Robert Sadowski, Robotics Senior Research Scientist, U.S. Army TARDEC

Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center

Announced in June 2017, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Electronics Resurgence Initiative (ERI) is a five-year, upwards of $1.5 billion investment in the future of domestic, U.S. government, and defense electronics systems. ERI is forging forward-looking collaborations to enable microelectronics progress through circuit specialization and to ensure secure DoD access to next-generation electronics technologies.

ERI currently encompasses 20 programs—organized into four thrusts—managed by 12 program managers. The 3D heterogeneous integration thrust is enabling tight incorporation of differing circuit components, including through the development of the first state of the art electrical interface standard supported by an open source reference design. The novel materials and devices thrust is delivering new materials technologies to the domestic manufacturing base, demonstrating the first commercial manufacture of resistive RAM devices integrated with carbon nanotube transistors in a silicon compatible process. The design and security thrust is accelerating delivery of specialized circuitry and creating new opportunities for the safe use of open-source IP, recently showing that unknown chip design flaws can be rapidly located. The specialization thrust is optimizing systems for commercial and defense functions, such as driving towards ASIC-level performance in runtime programmable processors. Building on the tradition of successful government-industry partnerships, these and other ERI programs will enable the United States to collaboratively innovate a 4th wave of microelectronics progress and to create a more specialized, secure, and heavily automated electronics industry that meets national defense and commercial needs.

Visit www.eri-summit.com for more details on the ERI Summit, including slide downloads.

ERI Summit 2019: Framework for Novel Compute (FRANC)

Dr. Young-Kai Chen, Program Manager, DARPA MTO

Dr. Naresh Shanbhag, Professor of Electrical Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Announced in June 2017, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Electronics Resurgence Initiative (ERI) is a five-year, upwards of $1.5 billion investment in the future of domestic, U.S. government, and defense electronics systems. ERI is forging forward-looking collaborations to enable microelectronics progress through circuit specialization and to ensure secure DoD access to next-generation electronics technologies.

ERI currently encompasses 20 programs—organized into four thrusts—managed by 12 program managers. The 3D heterogeneous integration thrust is enabling tight incorporation of differing circuit components, including through the development of the first state of the art electrical interface standard supported by an open source reference design. The novel materials and devices thrust is delivering new materials technologies to the domestic manufacturing base, demonstrating the first commercial manufacture of resistive RAM devices integrated with carbon nanotube transistors in a silicon compatible process. The design and security thrust is accelerating delivery of specialized circuitry and creating new opportunities for the safe use of open-source IP, recently showing that unknown chip design flaws can be rapidly located. The specialization thrust is optimizing systems for commercial and defense functions, such as driving towards ASIC-level performance in runtime programmable processors. Building on the tradition of successful government-industry partnerships, these and other ERI programs will enable the United States to collaboratively innovate a 4th wave of microelectronics progress and to create a more specialized, secure, and heavily automated electronics industry that meets national defense and commercial needs.

Visit www.eri-summit.com for more details on the ERI Summit, including slide downloads.

SubT Challenge Autonomy and Networking

MAJ Amber Walker talks with teams that participated in the Subterranean Challenge Tunnel Circuit about the difficulties of autonomy and networking in the underground environment. Dr. Timothy Chung is the program manager for the SubT Challenge in DARPA’s Tactical Technology Office (TTO). MAJ Walker, also a program manager in TTO, is a roboticist and observed the teams’ course runs in the Tunnel Circuit. The event took place in Pittsburgh, August 15-22, 2019.

SubT Challenge Perception

MAJ Amber Walker talks with teams that participated in the Subterranean Challenge Tunnel Circuit about the difficulties of perception in the underground environment. Dr. Timothy Chung is the program manager for the SubT Challenge in DARPA’s Tactical Technology Office (TTO). MAJ Walker, also a program manager in TTO, is a roboticist and observed the teams’ course runs in the Tunnel Circuit. The event took place in Pittsburgh, August 15-22, 2019.

SubT Challenge Out of the Lab and Into the Tunnel

MAJ Amber Walker talks with teams that participated in the Subterranean Challenge Tunnel Circuit about the challenge of moving from the lab or simulation to the real-world underground environment. Dr. Timothy Chung is the program manager for the SubT Challenge in DARPA’s Tactical Technology Office (TTO). MAJ Walker, also a program manager in TTO, is a roboticist and observed the teams’ course runs in the Tunnel Circuit. The event took place in Pittsburgh, August 15-22, 2019.