The Air Force Research Laboratory is calling for industry insight into the bioeffects of directed-energy applications, according to a Feb. 12 request for information published on Federal Business Opportunities.
"The primary objective of the anticipated research includes: identifying benefits, risks and capabilities for a wide range of military [radio frequency/high power microwaves/particle beam] radiation systems," the RFI states.
Labeling DE a "game-changing technology area," the Air Force launched the Directed Energy Weapon Flight Plan in May 2017 to shift scientific research to operational capability. The service is interested in DE technology for forward base defense, aircraft self-protection and precision strike.
Responses are due Feb. 25 and should discuss technical approach, research approaches to investigating "subtle effects in biological systems" and mathematical and numerical bioelectromagnetic and thermodynamnic models for predicting thermal and non-thermal effects.
In addition to identifying benefits and risks, objectives of the research include: "discovering new mechanisms of biological action of RF/HPM/PB on biological systems, predicting/mitigating the bioeffects of DE on personnel/mission performance and exploiting the bioeffects of DE for weapons applications."
The market research analysis is led by AFRL's Radio Frequency Biological Effects group. "Our goal is to provide the USAF with the world's best RF/HPM/PB radiation bioeffects research and science-based exposure standards, allowing maximum safe exploitation of DE for national defense," the request states.