Airborne communication nodes in ground networks. Scenario analysis mobile core net


  • Sara Örn Tengstrand

Publish date: 2014-05-26

Report number: FOI-R--3861--SE

Pages: 25

Written in: Swedish


  • ad hoc networks
  • UAV
  • airborne nodes
  • communication range
  • antenna


In order to connect tactical radio nets to the fixed core net of the Armed Forces, a mobile core net is often used. By using airborne nodes in the mobile core net, or by using them to connect to the core net, the range of the system could possibly be increased or the redeployment time could become shorter. We have studied the increase in communiation range from using airborne nodes and the demands on the antenna gain of the airborne nodes. Three scenarios have been studied. In the first, an airborne node is used to temporarily replace a mast in the mobile core net. In the second scenario, the airborne node is used by a headquarter, either as a high mast, or as a relay node in order to increase range. In the third scenario, the airborne nodes are used to replace masts in a sequence of radio links. The studied system uses a carrier frequency of 1.35 GHz, and a data rate of 16 Mbps. The results shows that the range and demands on antenna gain are clearly dependent on the flight height of the airborne node. Typically, a flight height of at least 300 m or an antenna with antenna gain of at least 10 dB is needed in order for an airborne node to be able to replace the mast or give increased range. If the airborne node has better performance than the minimum requirements, the gains might be substantial. In scenario three, for example, two airborne nodes at 1000 m heigth and with 10 dB antenna gain can replace six relaying masts.