Sensor Lab Upgrade

USAF Research Lab Sensors Directorate, Sensor Lab Upgrades & Additions

Air Force Research Lab, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio

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One of the major projects to emerge from the 2005 BRAC Commission was the concentration of AFRL Sensors Directorate facilities from three principal locations – Hanscom AFB, Rome (NY) Research Site, and Wright-Patterson AFB – to a single facility at Building 620, Wright-Patterson AFB. The Howland Company assisted Dayton-based Butt Construction Company with their bid proposal, and when they were awarded the contract in 2009, The Howland Company was retained as System Integrator for the project.

As System Integrator, The Howland Company’s role encompassed a broad range of responsibilities:

  • Integrated the mission requirements of five AFRL labs into a
    single antenna range design
  • Provided technical liason to user organizations
  • Developed the detailed range design to achieve AFRL’s
    conceptual design
  • Prepared procurement specifications for major range
    components – compact range, turntables, equipment gantry, absorber, etc.
  • Reviewed construction drawings
  • Monitored construction
  • Reviewed test plans
  • Monitored acceptance testing of major components

The Howland Company also conducted a series of measurements to validate the anechoic performance of the completed chamber before installation of the compact range reflector and feeds. By using our one-of-a-kind spherical nearfield imaging system, we were able to verify the quality of the electromagnetic environment in a fraction of the time needed for older techniques.

sensors lab upgrade

Photos by Butt Construction Co.

compact range reflector

Compact range reflector and feed enclosure

indoor/outdoor test preparation and staging

Installation of mobile gantry in the Indoor Range
test preparation/staging area

Indoor Range Features

Multimode Operation

Antenna Pattern
Radar Cross Section

  • Monostatic
  • Bistatic Nearfield
  • Tomographic

System Evaluation Capability

Frequency Range

400MHz – 18GHz
100MHz – 100GHz

Chamber Size

90′ x 80′ x 56′
(27m x 24m x 17m)

Quiet Zone

12ft diameter
12ft long cylinder

Maximum DUT weight

5000 lbs.

indoor range under construction
Indoor Range under construction; the single-leaf main door is 20 feet wide and 40 feet high.
sensor lab anechoic chamber
The Sensor Lab anechoic chamber is one of the largest to be equipped with an FM200 gas fire suppression system. The demonstration shown above discharged six gas nozzles. The completed chamber has 114 of these nozzles.
air force sensor lab upgrades
Another view of the Spherical Nearfield Imaging Scanner; The Howland Company’s measurement technique pinpoints sources of reflection into the chamber’s quiet zone.

The Howland Company Inc

5012 Bristol Industrial Way
Suite 108
Buford, GA 30518


t. 678-546-5680
f. 678-546-5939


Monday - Friday:
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM