Intelligent Automation, Incorporated (IAI) has announced the launch of its RFnest™ family of products. The Radio Frequency Network channel Emulator and Simulator Tool, or RFnest™, accelerates the development and testing of new communications and security technologies.
IAI’s RFnest™ is the first scalable full mesh channel emulator in the market today that allows for up to 96 physical radios to be connected and tested in MIMO, SISO, SIMO, MISO or full mesh configurations across a broad radio frequency spectrum. Users can create complex test scenarios, including real-life environments (e.g., rural areas and urban canyons) and assets (e.g., dismounted soldiers, vehicle convoys, unmanned aerial vehicles, and airborne networks), to recreate operational communication environments in a laboratory setting.
As tactical wireless communication networks continue to expand and dominate the global Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) landscape, developing an effective and realistic testing environment for these emerging communications technologies remains an urgent need. “Our customers needed a capability for cost effective, repeatable, and realistic testing of networked radios in a laboratory,” says Dr. Vikram Manikonda, President of IAI. “RFnest™ provides these capabilities in a modular, versatile, scalable, and user friendly tool.”
RFnest™ is also the only commercially available channel emulator that supports the seamless integration and communications of real radio nodes and virtual (simulated) radio/network nodes. The inclusion of virtual nodes enables test scenarios to be expanded to hundreds of nodes.
The integrated RFview™ data display and visualization tools provide the user with a reliable and repeatable assessment of communications protocols and network performance. RFview™ interfaces with third party channel modeling tools as well as commercially available network emulation software including the Extendable Mobile Ad-hoc Network Emulator (EMANE) and the Common Open Research Emulator (CORE).
The RFnest™ family of products is designed to address the specific needs of each customer. The RFnest™ family includes the RFnest™ Analog and the RFnest™ Digital series, both powered by RFview™ software. The RFnest™ Analog series is an affordable network channel emulation tool with the capability to emulate full mesh networks with fading channels. The RFnest™ Analog model is available immediately. The RFnest™ Digital series is a modular system that can be purchased in 12, 24, 48, and 96 node configurations and offers advanced solutions for emulation of frequency selective channels in highly dynamic environments. The Digital series will be available in the Spring of 2014.
Developed, in part, under a Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) program, RFnest™ was cited as an SBIR success story by the Air Force Research Laboratory. IAI will showcase RFnest on booth 1030 at the Military Communications Conference (MILCOM), San Diego Convention Center, San Diego, CA, from November 18 through November 20, 2013.