DEAL came into existence in 1965 at Mussoorie as Himalayan Radio Propagation Unit (HRPU) with an aim to help the Services to setup Communication Links in the border areas and provide frequency predictions using data collected from propagation studies.
In the month of June 1968. HRPU was relocated in the barracks of IRDE at Dehradun to meet the emerging communication requirements of the services. The lab was renamed as Defence Electronics Applications Laboratory (DEAL) and shifted to the present campus in 1976. Since then , DEAL has grown into a major “Systems Laboratory” of DRDO engaged in pursuing technologies in the front-line areas of Defence Communication and Surveillance. It is working in the area of Satellite based systems, Image Processing, Data Links, Millimeter Wave and Microwave Communication Systems and Software Defined Radios.
Today DEAL is engaged in the development of Communication Systems right from Very Low Frequency (VLF) to Extremely High Frequency upto 140 GHz. In this wide frequency spectrum many products have been inducted in services. In the Seventies, the major work of DEAL was the propagation measurements and Development of Tropo Scatter Communication System. In Eighties, DEAL was working on HF Communication System, Microwave Refractometer, Data Links, VLF Receiver, MM Wave Communication and Satellite Communication. In mid 80s, the transportable SATCOM Terminals developed by DEAL were put to effective use in Sri Lanka during Operation Pawan. In the nineties , DEAL took up the projects for the development of Meteor Burst Communication (MBC) System, Combat Net Radio, Data Links For Nishant UAV, X-Band Satellite Communication System, Satcom Network Management System Nakshatra (NMS) and MM Wave Communication Systems. The tactical Data Link for RPV Nishant provides robust anti-jam commandand control link from ground to the air vehicle. The frequency hopping Combat Net Radio CNR was inducted into the services after series of successful user trials.
During the last one and half decade, the lab made tremendous growth in terms of development of technologies and systems. In the area of satellite communication, we saw the growth from realization of S-band suitcase terminal to briefcase terminal to Manpack Satcom Terminal and its induction into the services. A transportable earth station to recover imagery from low earth orbit satellite was realised, the only such station in the country, for real time coverage for the extreme regions. Wideband satellite based linkage with exclusive transponder in Ku Band was achieved among all ground stations. In the field of radios, after completion of Software Radio Development Program, DEAL started working on the technologiesrequired for development of Software Defined Radio and presently is in advanced stage of realisation of various form factors of SDR Navy. In the Data Links area, the technologies required for the LOS as well as Satcom Data Links for various manned and unmanned surveillance platforms were realized undertaking a Data Link Technology Development Program. Toay, we have successfully developed the Data Links for AEW&CS platform. The data links have been integrated with the AEW&CS platform and undergone successful flight trials. Development of Data Links for Rustom-II UAV and Missiles is in advanced stage. Advanced VLF Receiver for Navy has been successfully realized and is under induction with Navy. In the area of MM Wave Technology, CIFF and Collision Avoidance Systems have been realized and demonstrated to the users. Automatic Identification Systems for Indian Coastal Surveillance have been realized and are under field trials. GSAT6 Terminals are in the process of induction. Troposcatter Communications Systems of the IAF have been upgraded to digital technology with higher data rates. The development activities in DEAL are ably supported by facilities like Technical Information Center, CAD, Precision Workshop, MIC Lab, EMI/EMC Lab, Antenna Test Range, Environmental Test Facility and Quality Assurance.