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Rob McDaniel


Over forty years of experience developing advanced electro-optical systems for military and security applications. Rob is an expert at developing effective teams to win and execute new business. He has demonstrated his ability to grow organizations and businesses in a challenging environment that includes both US and international customers

His work experience includes Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems and Elbit where he has led the successful development of a number of active and passive sensor systems for threat warning, targeting, surveillance, security, and countermeasures

Rob is currently helping to develop and market advanced technology using infrared imagers and advanced image processing techniques to detect person-borne threats including explosives and weapons. He is working to these apply cutting-edge techniques to the problem of protecting people from the growing threat of terrorism.


  • BS Physics, Florida Institute of Technology, Melbourne, FL., 1977
  • MS Applied Management, Lesley College, Cambridge, MA., 1989
  • DoD Secret Clearance (expired 2013); DHS Secret Clearance 2009; DoD TS/SCI Clearance (expired 2007)

Technical Publications

  • “EO/IR Sensors Enhance Border Security- II”; Dror Sharon and Robert McDaniel; SPIE (2007)
  • “New sensors enhance border Security; Robert McDaniel; SPIE (2006)
  • “MUSICTM Directed Infrared Counter Measure (DIRCM) System”; Andrew Lovett & Robert McDaniel; Military Sensing Symposium Meeting on Active Systems, September 2006.
  • “EO/IR Sensors for Border Security Applications”; SPIE Defense and Security Symposium, 17-21 April 2006
  • “Long Range Hand Held Thermal Imager”; S Edward Seibel, Andrew Struckhoff, Robert McDaniel, Shlomo Shamai; SPIE Defense and Security Symposium, 17-21 April 2006
  • “A Polyspectral LADAR Optical Breakscreen Projectile Sensor for Reactive Countermeasure Queuing”; Robert J. Grasso, Patricia A. Bodan, M.J. (Jay) Smith, Jefferson E. Odhner, Eldon M. Sutphin, John A. McNeil, Robert V. McDaniel; SPIE 2005
  • “Method and Apparatus for Compensating For Atmospheric Turbulence Based On Holographic Atmospheric Turbulence Sampling”; Pat. Application #60/705,137 August 3, 2005; Robert J. Grasso, Leonard E. Russo and Robert V. McDaniel
  • “A Novel Low Cost Targeting System (LCTS) Based Upon a High-Resolution 2D Imaging Laser Radar”; Robert J. Grasso, Jefferson E. Odhner, John C. Wikman, Fred W. Skaluba, George F. Dippel, Robert V. McDaniel, David S. Ferrell, William (Ed) Seibel; SPIE (2005)
  • “A Novel Linear Phase Conjugation Atmospheric Turbulence Compensation Concept Based Upon Real-Time Interactive Media Sampling Holography for Target-in-the-Loop”; Robert J. Grasso, Leonard E. Russo, and Robert V. McDaniel; SPIE (2005)
  • “A Model and Simulation to Predict the Performance of Angle-Angle-Range 3D Flash Ladar Imaging Sensor Systems” R. Grasso, J. Odhner, L. Russo, R. McDaniel; 11th SPIE International Symposium on Remote Sensing, September 2004
  • “Laser Radar Range and Detection Performance for MEMS Corner Cube Retroreflector Arrays; R. J. Grasso, S. R. Jost, M.J. Smith and R. V. McDaniel, SPIE Remote Sensing Conference, September 2003
  • “Image Fusion for Tactical Applications”; R. McDaniel (LMCO), D. Scribner (NRL), William Krebs (NPS), Penny Warren (NRL), Norman Ockman (LMCO) and Jason McCarley (NPS). Invited paper to Infrared Technology and Applications XXIV, SPIE International Symposium, July 1998
  • “Parametric Analysis of Electro-Optical Targeting Systems”; R. McDaniel and J. Crouch, 2nd Joint NATO-IRIS Symposium, June 1996
  • “Advanced Infrared Missile Approach Warning System (AIRMAWS)”; J. Miller, M. Amon, G. Spencer, R. McDaniel and J. Elmer, 2nd Joint NATO-IRIS Symposium, June 1996
  • “Engineering Metrics and it’s Effects on Individual Motivation”; R. McDaniel, Masters Thesis, Applied Management, Lesley College, Cambridge MA, April 1989
  • “Flight Test Results of Missile Warning System”; Lt. D. Cook, J. Abeyta and R. McDaniel, Infrared Information Symposium Specialty Group on Countermeasures, April 1985
  • “IRST Countermeasures”; R. McDaniel and G. Jankowitz, Infrared Information Symposium Specialty Group on Countermeasures, April 1984
  • “Current and Future Generation EO Systems – Requirements and Applications”; R. McDaniel, TMSA Electronic Warfare Conference, London, England, December 1983
  • “The Current Status and Outlook for Electro-Optical Warfare”; K. Ward and R. McDaniel, TMSA Electronic Warfare Conference, Boston, Massachusetts, April 1983
  • “Adaptive Subtraction in Staring Sensors for Background Reduction”; R. McDaniel and K. Ward, Infrared Information Symposium Specialty Group on Countermeasures (IRIS-IRCM), March 1982
  • “Statistical Analysis of IRST Backgrounds”; D. Pollock, G. Jankowitz and R. McDaniel, Infrared Information Symposium, March 1979
  • “Development of an Elastomer Storage Device”; L. Ralston and R. McDaniel, SPIE Huntsville Symposium, March 1979
  • “Elastomer Storage Device”; R. McDaniel and L. Ralston, ISA International Recording System and Materials Symposium, January 1979

Professional Experience

Thermal Matrix
2019 - Present

Thermal Matrix uses infrared imagers and advanced image processing techniques to detect person-borne threats including explosives and weapons. We have experience with the US DoD and Agencies as well as domestic and international industrial, security and police customers. Our technology includes both patent-protected intellectual property as well as proprietary software. We are working to grow the company through a combination of internal and external investment to apply cutting-edge processing to the problem of protecting people from the growing threat of terrorism.

SemiConductor Devices USA Infrared LLC (SCD.USA-IR) an Elbit affiliated company
2011 - 2019

Took over a troubled subsidiary of an Elbit-affiliated business in the US. Cut unnecessary expenses, moved to a larger facility and increased Marketing and R&D while increasing sales and EBIT during a difficult market. Revamped business model to provide complete infrared imaging solutions based on SCD technology vs. selling only detector products. Emphasized customer applications engineering support to become “designed-in” and improved after-sales support. Increased customer loyalty and number of customers every year. Implemented multi-year order agreements with major customers to stabilize yearly sales and build backlog. These actions resulted in an average CAGR of over 18% for the prior 7 years.

Successfully acquired Quantum Imaging Inc. as part of a strategy to increase our addressable US defense market and increase EBIT by becoming a vertically integrated supplier of cameras with organic design and production capabilities.

Elbit Systems of America (formerly Kollsman, Inc.)
2005 - 2011

Expanded sales from $20m/yr to $100M/yr and orders from $30M/yr to over $100M/yr, increasing backlog and profit. Complete P&L responsibility as well as new business pursuit and program execution for an organization developing and producing and supporting advanced sensor systems for DoD and international military applications. Products include Dismounted and Vehicle-mounted Observation, Targeting and Fire Control Systems; Force Protection systems; Advanced FLIRs; Laser Rangefinders and Designators; IR Countermeasures and Night Vision Goggles. Significant interaction with international, US Government and prime contractor customers. Major program wins include 3 major USMC thermal imaging programs, 3 laser programs and 3 international fire control programs as well as R&D.

BAE Systems (formerly Sanders, a Lockheed Martin Company)
2002 - 2005

Responsible for development of next-generation electro-optical and infrared (EO/IR) systems for Self-Protection (countermeasures), Laser Communications, and Precision Targeting. Developed a strategy for AS&T’s EO/IR systems development that supports both division-level and company-level strategic plans. Started a new organization and created an effective team that then developed and executed tactical action plans, resulting in multiple new R&D contracts representing over $40M in new EO/IR systems orders in the first 24 months of operations, with significant wins in the areas of Self-Protection, LADAR systems, and Laser Communications. Several of these programs transitioned to Line-of-Business organizations.

Advanced Systems & Technology (AS&T)
1999 - 2002

Responsible for day-to-day operations of the division with 300 technical personnel. AS&T’s mission is to develop next generation (5-10 years) technologies which will grow into future products. Responsibilities included programmatic and technical performance on a wide range of programs. Technical areas of cognizance included Signal Processing, Information Operations, Antennas & Receivers, Lasers & Electro-optics, Advanced Sensors and Acoustic Technology.

Additionally responsible for special initiatives. For example, directed the successful start-up of BAE SYSTEMS IEWS’ new Washington Technical Office, located in Arlington, VA.

Lockheed Martin Missiles & Fire Control
1992 - 1999

Led development of next-generation technology for new electro-optical fire control and missile seeker products as well as upgrades of existing systems. Areas developed included advanced multi-spectral sensors, as well as advanced components, algorithms and processors. Technologies included systems analysis and modeling; advanced optics, stabilization and tracking systems; advanced uncooled detector arrays; and image fusion algorithms and processing. Extensive experience in systems engineering, program management, and customer contact.

Lockheed Martin IR & Imaging Systems
1984 - 1991

Led development of infrared missile threat warning and imaging sensor systems for a variety of applications. Experience included EMD and development programs, with contact with both US and foreign customers. Two of the programs transitioned successfully to production. Programs successfully completed included: the Panavia Tornado ECR aircraft Infrared Imaging System which allows real time imaging and targeting in a combined Reconnaissance/”Wild-Weasel” type aircraft; a stabilized FLIR with a moving-target tracking capability, Laser Designator, and extensive autonomous/automatic controls which was successfully deployed by the USMC during Desert Storm; the AN/AAR-47 Missile Warning System for USMC helicopters; and a Dual Mode Missile Warning system that used a multispectral, scanning, infrared sensor integrated with a Doppler radar.

Kollmorgen Electro Optics Division
1991 - 1992

Engineering manager responsible for all programs dealing with submarine periscopes, vehicle sights and gun directors, using optical, infrared, laser, stabilization and ESM technologies. Included customer interface, both foreign (Israel, Egypt) and US.

ITT Avionics Division

Principal Investigator for Electro Optics Department IR&D programs that investigated acousto-optic signal processors, advanced infrared detector arrays, and Infrared Search and Track (IRST) signal processing. As part of government-funded programs, investigated IRST signal processing and countermeasures susceptibility. Also developed flight test plans and instrumentation for the F-15 IRST system.

Harris Government Communications Systems
1974 - 1979

Developed wide-band recording and readout devices for advanced optical signal processors used in SIGINT applications.

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