Unjammable Aircraft Detection system using Quantum Imaging

Discussion in 'Military Aviation' started by LurkerBaba, Dec 18, 2012.

  1. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

    Jul 2, 2010
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    Physicists have exploited the quantum properties of photons to create the first imaging system that is unjammable

    Jamming radar signals is an increasingly sophisticated affair. There are various techniques such as drowning the radar frequency with noise or dropping chaff to create a false reflection. But the most advanced radar systems can get around these ruses.


    So a more sophisticated idea is to intercept the radar signal and modify it in a way that gives false information about the target before sending it back. That’s much harder to outsmart.

    But today, Mehul Malik and pals at the University of Rochester in New York state demonstrate a way to do it.

    These guys base their technique on the quantum properties of photons and in particular on the fact that any attempt to measure a photon always destroys its quantum properties.

    So their idea is to use polarised photons to detect and image objects. Reflected photons can of course be used to build up an image of the object. But an adversary could intercept these photons and resend them in a way that disguises the object’s shape or makes it look as if it is elsewhere.

    However, such a process would always change the quantum properties of the photons such as their polarisation. And so it should always be possible to detect such interference. “In order to jam our imaging system, the object must disturb the delicate quantum state of the imaging photons, thus introducing statistical errors that reveal its activity,” say Malik and co.

    That’s more or less exactly how quantum key distribution for cryptography works. The idea here is that any eavesdropper would change the quantum properties of the key and so reveal his or her presence. The only difference in the quantum imaging scenario is that the “message” is sent and received by the same person.

    Malik and co have tested their idea by bouncing photons off an aeroplane-shaped target and measuring the polarisation error rate in the return signal. Without any eavesdropping the system easily imaged the aeroplane.

    But when an adversary intercepted the photons and modified them to send back an image of a bird, the interference was easy to spot, say Malik and co.

    That’s an impressive demonstration of the first imaging system that is unjammable thanks to quantum mechanics.

    That’s not to say the technique is perfect. It suffers from the same limitations that plague early quantum cryptographic systems, which are theoretically secure but crackable in practice.

    For example, instead of sending single photons, the quantum imaging system sends photon pulses which contain several photons. One or more of these can easily be siphoned away and analysed by an adversary without anybody else being any the wiser.

    However, there are an increasingly wide range of fixes for these problems for quantum key distribution that could help make this quantum imaging system more secure.

    Perhaps best of all, this kind of system could easily be put to work now. The techniques are well known and widely used in optics labs all over the world. So there’s no reason, this security cannot be added relatively quickly and cheaply to existing imaging systems.
    ref:[1212.2605] Quantum-secured imaging

    Quantum Imaging Technique Heralds Unjammable Aircraft Detection | MIT Technology Review
    Singh, pmaitra and W.G.Ewald like this.
  3. H.A.

    H.A. Senior Member Senior Member

    Dec 24, 2011
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    The stealth technology of America's fifth-generation jet fighters, the F-22 and the F-35, could be obsolete after a new discovery from the University of Rochester in New York.

    One main goal of fifth-generation aircrafts is to slip through skies over enemy lines without being targeted. It's not invisible, but elusive, and digitally feisty.

    The F-35's lineup of electronic tools, work toward that end, by using a variety of sophisticated and devastating radar defeating moves. Combined with internal weapons storage, special composite skin, and reduced angles of design, the fighter does all it can to work past the weaknesses in today's aircraft detection. Lockheed Martin designers, however, did not plan for this University of Rochester research.

    The U of R doesn't look to use a radar wave but instead a quantum image gleaned through a string of photons that boomerang out and back, telling operators everything they've seen. This process can't be jammed, confused, or eluded and rather than get absorbed, reflected, or even restructured to look like something else the photons supposedly report back with only the facts.

    Operators then compare elements of the beam when it left, with what the same quantum nuggets look like when they get back.
    Clearly it's more technical than this and involves quantum properties of photons, and physics I can barely imagine, but that's the gist of it.

    Researchers say their system isn't yet perfect and can theoretically be compromised, but that's something to address down the road.
    In the meantime they have a new quantum imaging system that can "be added relatively quickly and cheaply to existing systems."
    Whether that's true or not, the results prompted military aviation News site Alert 5 to call it "unjammable aircraft detection."

    This won't be good news to Lockheed Martin and F-35 proponents. It's no secret the F-35 has been hit by its share of problems and cost overruns. Canada just announced its plans to consider other aircraft to replace an aging fleet and Australia's delayed their F-35 order so often that delivery Down Under is as distant as it is obscure.

    If stealth becomes no longer possible, then a major selling point of the troubled F-35 project will become an expensive waste.

    Quantum Imaging From University of Rochester - Business Insider
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  4. EdwardLeigh

    EdwardLeigh New Member

    Dec 18, 2012
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    Hello Members,

    Detecting a potential threat before it occurs is the first step to preventing any aggression. In today’s wars, the scales favor the party that controls the air. Dominate the battle in the air, and you’ll dominate the battlefield ground side as well. It’s no secret to anyone that impressive aircraft detection systems have been developed and deployed in the years past, however, every time, a counter was found. Aircraft anti-detection systems have gotten incredibly complex. So complex, in fact, that they can intercept a radar signal and send back a picture of something other than the aircraft

    Thanks and Regards,
    Edward Leigh
  5. Shirman

    Shirman Regular Member

    Dec 13, 2012
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    Imagine Such Systems fall in the hands of some Russian agents in U.S. or Russian Scientist or Physicists or Engineers come up with the same System. It would not only Seriously Kill 1 Trillion Dollar F- 35 program but also kill worlds costliest F-22's Superiority Jets, B-2s, american next gen long range bomber program and eventually U.S. Superpower Status, China's PLAAF J-31, J-20, USN X-47 UCAVS, Dassault Neuron, BAe Tiranis etc. I wont mention Sukhoi T-50 because Russians designed 5th Gen aircraft that hunts and destroys other 5th gen Adversaries.Man those University Physicists sure r evil bunch of counter-Strategist who r targeting to counter defense projects worth's trillions of dollars with their discoveries and inventions. :mad::smokin::devil::stirpot:

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