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CAC Awarded Industry Contract to Study Machine Learning’s Role in Radio Frequency

Drs. Xun Jiao and Mojtaba Vaezi
Drs. Xun Jiao and Mojtaba Vaezi

L3Harris Technologies, Camden, NJ, has awarded Villanova’s Center for Advanced Communications (CAC) a one-year contract of $180,000 to investigate the role of machine learning in radio frequency (RF) sensing. The project is titled “Machine Learning-based RF Signal Detection and Classification” and considers the discrimination of RF signals based on distinctions in their temporal structures, spectral characteristics, and time-frequency signatures. These distinctions, referred to as features, are automatically learned from the training data. Several deep learning approaches and neural network structures for classifications of a large set of communications and radar signals will be examined in terms of performance and complexity. 

Project manager is Dr. Ahmad Hoorfar, professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and director of the Antenna Research Laboratory. Assistant Professor Dr. Xun Jiao serves as the principal investigator. Drs. Mojtaba Vaezi and CAC Director Moeness Amin are the project’s co-PIs, and two full-time PhD students will contribute as well.   

Dr. Amin says, “L3Harris approached the CAC just a couple of months ago and selected Villanova for funding based on its research track record, faculty expertise and experience in the research areas considered.” He adds, “While the company is one of the College’s top recruiters, we have been overdue for a collaboration like this at the graduate level. I hope this project is the beginning of a strong partnership across many areas in electrical and computer engineering.”