Communications EW
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This webinar will explore two key problems for operatives analyzing the RF spectrum: signal classification and detection of anomalous signals.

 Export to Your Calendar 12/31/2018
When: Date TBA
Time TBA
Where: United States

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Communications EW

Date and Time to be Announced 


This is an introductory course in Communications Electronic Warfare. It covers techniques for setting up intercept and jamming links for Electronic Warfare (EW) against ground to ground and air to ground enemy communication signals, UAV command and data links and weapon control links. It starts with a discussion of the one-way communication link, then covers the important propagation modes for communication band EW, modern signal modulations, and the techniques for predicting intercept and jamming performance as a function of the tactical geometry and local terrain. It gives practical guidance in the application of the theory presented to a wide variety of EW situations.

Each session includes lecture and hands-on exercises. Attendee should have scientific calculators (or smart phones with that function) available to complete the exercises.

Each session will be presented LIVE by an actively engaged instructor. The virtual classroom allows you to “raise your hand,” ask your questions audibly or type them in the chat, and the instructor will respond to your questions in real-time. It’s just like sitting in the classroom with the instructor – all without leaving your office or home. All sessions are recorded and are made available to registrants for 30 days after registering. Recordings are available within 24 hours.

There is a downloadable course syllabus provided for each session. It contains copies of all visual aids and problem worksheets for that session. It will be available for download in the meeting room.

EW 103 is the recommended reference text book for the course. It is not included in the price of the course registration. While helpful, it is not mandatory. It was written by the course presenter and provides further information on each of the subjects covered. Most of the visual aids in the course contain pointers to the text pages on which the relevant subject matter is covered.

Full Course: $1600 for members / $1650 for non-members
Individual Sessions:$250 for members / $300 for non-members

Session 1 – Introduction and Communications Math

May 22 - 1300-1600 EDT (1700-2000 UTC)
This session discusses the general nature of communications links and the types of links that are important in Electronic Warfare. This includes tactical command and control links, cell phone links, data links, jamming links, improvised explosive device (IED) links and satellite links. Each type of link is described in terms of its applications, vulnerabilities and critical elements. Also covered in this session is the math required to characterize link performance. All calculations are performed using dB numbers and equations and require no math background beyond Algebra. The equations developed are easy to use and lead directly to the answers required to predict and evaluate EW effectiveness.

Session 2 – Communication Signals

May 24 - 1300-1600 EDT (1700-2000 UTC)
This session discusses the structure of communication signals. It includes the spectrum characteristics of all common modulations and the way that each carries its information. Analog modulations like AM, FM and various multi-channel signals are described along with their important parameters and performance trade-offs. Digital communication theory is covered to the extend required to understand the advantages and vulnerabilities of all widely used digital modulations. This includes error correction codes and low-probability-of-intercept (LPI) modulations that are widely used in modern military systems to reduce the effectiveness of EW systems and techniques.

Session 3 -- Radio Propagation

May 26 - 1300-1600 EDT (1700-2000 UTC)
This session presents the link equation and the most important radio propagation models. It details how to calculate the received power as a function of all of the link elements and the transmission environment. Included are: Line-of-sight links where the signal path is in a clean environment isolated from the ground, Two-ray links where the signal path is near the ground, and Knife-edge diffraction where the signal path is blocked by a ridge line. Also included are propagation situations in which signals must diffract over a complex ridge line, through trees, near the ocean or through rain; atmospheric attenuation for links within the atmosphere or between satellites and Earth stations. For each case, mathematical models are given, and in most cases nomographs and techniques using the provided antenna/propagation slide rule allow the determination of quick answers without performing calculations.

Session 4 – Antennas and Receivers

May 31 - 1300-1600 EDT (1700-2000 UTC)
This session includes descriptions of all important types of antennas including their signal gain, polarization and angular coverage. It also teaches the determination of antenna performance trade-offs either mathematically or by use of the provided antenna/propagation slide rule. The session also describes the various types of receivers used in Radars, Communication links, and EW applications. Each is described in terms of its configuration and performance parameters. Both analog and digital receivers are included. Finally, it teaches how to calculate sensitivity and dynamic range for all important types of receivers. This includes both analog and digital receivers.

Session 5 – Signal Detection

June 2 - 1300-1600 EDT (1700-2000 UTC)
This session covers the detection of conventional and low probability of intercept (LPI) signals. The primary emphasis of this session is detection of LPI signals, which are designed to make them difficult to detect. Techniques for detection of frequency hopping, chirp and direct sequence spread spectrum signals are described, along with predictions of the performance level to be expected in various tactical situations. Also covered is the detection of signals which are protected by multiple LPI techniques.

Session 6 – Emitter Location

June 5 - 1300-1600 EDT (1700-2000 UTC)
This session covers emitter location approaches and the techniques used to locate hostile radar and communications emitters. The techniques vary widely in the accuracy and sensitivity they provide and the types of signals against which they can be applied. Covered techniques include: amplitude comparison, Doppler, interferometer, time difference of arrival, frequency difference of arrival, and systems using multiple techniques. For each of the emitter location techniques presented, the theory of operation, achievable accuracy, calibration approaches and vulnerabilities are discussed. Of particular importance are the approaches used to determine the location of low-probability-of-intercept (LPI) signal transmitters.

Session 7 – Communications Jamming

June 7 - 1300-1600 EDT (1700-2000 UTC)
This session covers the theory and practice applicable to jamming both conventional and LPI communications signals. It first covers the jamming of conventional analog and digital signals. This includes approaches to determination of jamming effectiveness. Then, this session moves on to the jamming of LPI (frequency hopping, chirp and direct sequence spread spectrum) signals. Techniques covered include both those that can be used in fairly simple systems and those requiring sophisticated digital receivers and processors. Exercises leading to the determination of achieved jamming to signal ratios with various modulations and tactical situations are included.

Session 8 – Communications Intercept

June 9 - 1300-1600 EDT (1700-2000 UTC)
This session starts by covering the requirements to recover the information carried by conventional hostile communication signals in various tactical situations. This includes the calculation of effective ranges and the impact of modulations. The effect of various electronic protection techniques that can be applied by hostile communicators will be discussed. Also, this session will cover encryption and (in general) the approaches to defeating it. Finally, techniques for the recovery of information from (unencrypted) frequency hopping, chirp and direct sequence signals will be presented.


Dave Adamy is an internationally recognized expert in electronic warfare who writes the popular monthly EW-101 column in the Journal of Electronic Defense magazine. He has over 50 years experience as a systems engineer and program technical director, developing EW systems from DC to Light, deployed on platforms from submarines to space, with specifications from quick reaction capability to high reliability. He has published over 250 professional articles on Electronic Warfare, receiver system design and closely related subjects, including the popular EW101 series in the Journal of Electronic Defense. He has presented dozens of EW courses for military, government and defense industry organizations in the US and allied countries. He holds an MSEE (Communication theory) and has written 16 books on Electronic Warfare and related subjects. Website



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For questions, please contact Brock Sheets.


The entire presentation and Q&A will be recorded for viewing approximately 24 hours after the event. You can find the link to the recording in our AOC Virtual Series Archive. (separate registration required to view the recording)

With over 13,000 members internationally, the Association of Old Crows is an organization for individuals who have common interests in Electronic Warfare (EW), Electromagnetic Spectrum Management Operations, Cyber Electromagnetic Activities (CEMA), Information Operations (IO), and other information related capabilities. The Association of Old Crows provides a means of connecting members and organizations nationally and internationally across government, defense, industry, and academia to promote the exchange of ideas and information, and provides a platform to recognize advances and contributions in these fields.