The Foundation of our Company
Our engineering team is dedicated to solving our customers’ problems...
...whether it is using one of our existing products, creating a turnkey custom-engineered solution or augmenting your team with additional hard-to-find capabilities such as laying out a high-speed baseband board, interfacing to a custom Bluetooth device or developing custom FPGA processing modules. Regardless of the model of the engagement, we'll apply the same attention to detail to ensure that technical, budgeting, and scheduling requirements are met. We've been doing it this way for more than 20 years for our customers, and we can do for you.
From Concept to Final Product
Our engineers and project managers take an applications and system approach to solving a customer's problem. We leverage our extensive and diverse backgrounds and core architecture of wireless products and designs to reduce cost and time to market. Our Agile development processes center around short development iterations and getting prototypes and products in the hands of stakeholders as early in the development cycle as possible to solicit feedback and ensure that the final product will meet their needs.
Once developed, we offer lean manufacturing and total supply chain management services to quickly get your product to market.
Our engineering team consists multiple disciplines:
- RF Design
- Application Software
- Embedded Software
Custom Solutions are our Specialty
The IWT engineering team is a group of highly experienced, solution-focused individuals with an average experience level of 15+ years and over 50% holding post-graduate degrees in engineering and science. This team has particular strengths in the areas of system, hardware/mechanical, software engineering and signal processing with experience in a wide range of applications and technology including...
- Ad hoc mesh networks
- Internet of Things (IoT) systems
- Low power distributed sensor networks
- Seismic detection and classification algorithms
- Sensor Processing algorithms
- Geolocation in GPS denied areas
- Narrowband, Wideband and Ultra-wideband RF design
- High-speed baseband processing hardware design
- High-speed signal processing
- Software Defined/Cognitive Radio
- Electronic Warfare and Signal Intelligence
- Hazardous Area/Intrinsically Safe Operating Environments
- First Responder communications and tracking
- Warfighter communications
- Software Defined Radios
- Cognitive Radios
- Personnel and Asset Tracking
- Covert surveillance
- Gas Detection
- Health monitoring
- Automated hardware validation and calibration systems
- Real-time production monitoring and analytics
- Large-scale sensor data processing, fusion and visualization.
Learn More about Our Engineering Disciplines
Our systems engineering group is dedicated to creating solutions to our customers’ problems whether they are first responders, warfighters, border patrol agents, miners, etc. Our team has repeatedly demonstrated the ability to successfully address complex problems by working closely with stakeholders and end users and extract the key CONOP, requirements and constraints. They take these inputs along with their broad knowledge of wireless design, COTS wireless solutions, battery technologies, etc. and perform a series of tradeoff exercises to arrive at an optimal solution.
IWT RF engineers have designed transceivers for many applications, including Land Mobile Radio (Part 90) devices, ultra-wideband communications, underground communications, small battery powered sensors and cellular base stations. The transceiver frequencies vary from 30 MHz to 6 GHz, the bandwidths from 528 MHz to 6.25 kHz, with many supported types of medium access control schemas (TDMA, FDMA, frequency hopping, etc.) and modulation types (FSK/MSK, DSSS, OFDM, chirp, etc.). These designs have been realized using discrete circuits, COTS components and custom RFICs. Our team specializes in designing custom receivers, transmitters, synthesizers, power amplifiers, low-noise amplifiers and antennas, Our team relies heavily on Agilent ADS to model representative channels for custom transceiver blocks and specialized antenna designs.
The IWT team’s experience with baseband hardware design is also comprehensive. Our hardware design team members have backgrounds in Land Mobile Radio, cellular base stations, intelligent street lights and tactical communications. To ensure high quality, we do all of our own baseband designs in-house and we often provide contract design services to other companies who need a quality design realized quickly. Our team uses OrCAD tools for schematic capture and layout and we have good working relationships with several PCB contract manufacturers who we use to obtain high quality PCBs. Our HW engineers have designed baseband processing systems with operational bandwidths of up to 3 GHz as well as ultra-low-power systems designed to run for years on a single battery. These baseband designs have included DSP and FPGA signal processing chains, standard interfaces including DDR3, HDMI, JESD2048 ADC interface, SPI, I2C, USB, Compact Flash, Ethernet as well as custom interfaces and conditioning circuitry. In addition our experience developing products for the underground mining market has given us invaluable insight into the requirements for designing circuits to the most stringent Intrinsic Safety (IS) requirements.
Our team has developed programmable logic designs in RTL targeted for both FPGAs and custom ICs in application areas which include Electronic Warfare, Cognitive Radio, ultra-wideband ranging, Low Probability of Detection and Interception (LPI/LPD) sensor communication networks and other specialized applications. Our engineers have worked with both Xilinx and Altera FPGAs as well as transitioning our designs to a custom ASIC under a U.S Army CERDEC contract.
Some specific examples of the modules developed include:
- Forward Error Correction (convolutional encoders, Viterbi decoders, CRC encode/decode, interleaving).
- Data scrambling/whitening.
- Custom Modulators and Demodulators (OFDM, FSK, ultra-wideband)
- Medium Access Control (addressing, ack/nack, retransmit, etc.)
- Electronic Warfare techniques including DRFM
- Automatic Gain Control
- Signal Intelligence (detection, classification, grouping)
- Negative Signal-to-Noise communications and positioning using ultra-wideband
- Time-of-arrival positioning waveform to achieve sub-meter indoor positioning using UWB waveform.
- Interfaces (DDR3, I2C, SPI, Ethernet, UART, etc.)
Our team focuses on complete test coverage of all RTL modules. We accomplish this by utilizing self-checking test benches, simulation and test vector generation tools such as Mentor Graphics ModelSim and QuestaSim, MATLAB, as well as custom C programs and Python scripts.
The IWT software group has over 75 years of collective experience developing software for a wide range of applications and devices, including:
- MANET networks for voice and sensor data
- Perimeter protection
- First Responder communications and tracking
- Warfighter communications and tracking
- Custom Situational Awareness systems
- Electronic Warfare
- Asset tracking
- Smart lighting
- Remote ordinance launching
- Naval electronic warfare
- Biometric security
- Avionics control
- Covert surveillance
- Signal intelligence
- Health monitoring
- Bluetooth Low Energy
Meeting the operational requirements for the devices associated with these applications have given our engineers a unique understanding of the tradeoffs and techniques required to design software for both high powered servers and mission-critical, low power devices. A substantial part of this experience is the fact that our team has the ability to design high quality software for a variety of microprocessors, microcontrollers, FPGA softcores and DSPs. Our previous experience has included:
- Intel x86
- Atmel SAM7
- TI TMS320 DSPs
- Xilinx Microblaze Softcore
- Altera NIOS II Softcore
- TI MSP 430
- Intel 8051
- TI OMAP
In addition to the processor selection and architecture, our team also understands the importance of selecting the right platform components (operating system, middleware, networking stack, device drivers, etc.) for the device and its application. Our engineers have experience with home-grown, open source and commercial operating systems, including:
- Windows XP/7/8/10
- Windriver VixWorks
- Windows Server 2012
- Greenhills Integrity
- TI DSP/BIOS
Our engineers have designed, tested and fielded built-for-purpose DSP algorithms for commercial, military and public safety applications. These DSP algorithms have been targeted for a number of different processing platforms, including microcontrollers, DSPs, FPGAs and custom ICs. Examples include sub-audible control signaling, tone encoders/decoders, custom modulators/demodulators, digital filters, forward error correction blocks, matched filter receivers, integrators, vocoders, Electronic Warfare techniques for radar and signal intelligence and classification.
Our embedded software design team has experience in a diverse range of applications including military, public safety, industrial and commercial markets. They have designed software solutions for a wide range of processors and ranging from Linux-based multi-honed networking equipment to ultra-low devices with a simple event-driven while(1) architecture. Some specific examples of these designs are Land Mobile Radio terminals and base stations, cellular phones, mesh communications devices, low power sensor networks, seismic perimeter protection sensors, high-security access control devices, cable modems, covert surveillance devices, custom networking devices and gateways, Electronic Warfare platforms, intelligent batteries and others.
Intrinsic Safety (IS) refers to the design applied to electrical equipment and wiring that limits the energy, electrical and thermal levels below that required to ignite in a hazardous location.
Maneuvering through the complexities of an IS-based design and IS certification can be a daunting task. We’re here to help. Our engineers have designed and received IS certification on numerous devices, with several more pending certification.
With experience navigating ATEX and IEC standards, including MSHA approvals for underground mining, our team of engineers can design your product from the ground up to meet IS standards. If your team has already started the design process, our team of experts can provide consultation with your in-house design team to recommend changes before detailed engineering begins – saving you time, money and rework later.
Contact us today to get started with your intrinsically safe design.
IWT’s communication system design expertise is outstanding! They have the skills and experience to translate system level requirements into component level specifications.
Apps Manager, Agere Systems