Investigating the Implementation of “A BVHF-like System in L-band”



In EUROCONTROL the COMMUNICATION Domain is undertaking investigations in relation to the Future Communications Infrastructure (FCI) to support the future aeronautical communications. This work is coordinated with the FAA in the frame of Action Plan 17 of the EUROCONTROL/FAA Memorandum of Cooperation.
The FCI will be the key enabler for new ATM services and applications that will bring operational benefits in terms of capacity, efficiency and safety. The FCI will support both data and voice communication with an emphasis on data communication in the shorter term.
The FCI must support the new operational concepts, as well as the emerging requirements for communications of all types (both voice and data) with a minimum set of technologies deployed globally. The FCI will incorporate the new technologies as well as the legacy systems that will continue to be used.
Currently, an in depth analysis of the candidate technologies is being carried out, aiming to identify and recommend the final set of the technologies as part of the FCI. These technology investigations need to conclude in Q2 2007, aiming to provide the final FCI recommendations by mid 2007.
The EUROCONTROL investigations identified that the current analogue voice (DSB-AM) system and infrastructure are likely to remain the backbone of aeronautical communications for many years to come and the demand for spectrum for DSB-AM voice services in this band is expected to continue increasing into the near future. As the VHF COM band is already highly congested it will be very difficult, if not impossible, to accommodate new systems within the VHF COM band.
For that reason, EUROCONTROL is interested to investigate the use of a BVHF-like system in other bands, primarily in the L-band.

The potential use of other bands, already used by aviation, is being actively investigated.
The candidate options are:

- VHF NAV Band: [112 or 116] - 118 MHz

- L band: 960 - [1024 or 1164] MHz

- C band: [5030 or 5091] - 5150 MHz

The above bands are already being used by other systems. Therefore, before deciding to allow any new system to operate in any of these bands, detailed investigations about the impact to and from the existing systems need to be the undertaken, supplemented by performance investigations.
This Study aims to contribute to the ongoing work of FCI investigations by evaluating in depth one of the technologies (BVHF-like system) identified in the previous investigations.
Broadband VHF (B-VHF) was a research project funded by the European Commission within the Sixth Framework Programme. The project has investigated the feasibility of a new multi-carrier based wideband communication system to support aeronautical communications while operating as an overlay system in the VHF COM band.
Following an initial investigation of promising technologies, B-VHF emerged as one of the systems showing good potential for satisfying the needs of future aeronautical communications. The EC funded B-VHF project has already completed substantial amount of work in developing and designing the system for operation in the VHF band. However, the overlay implementation option is considered elaborative and costly and - as explained above - there is no free spectrum in the VHF band for a dedicated B-VHF implementation.

The key objectives of the B-AMC project investigations are to:

- Describe a BVHF-like system operating in the L-band which meets the identified operational requirements

- Investigate the spectrum compatibility aspects of such a system in the L-band

- Analyze the expected performance of such a system

- Provide information to support the comparative investigations of EUROCONTROL in relation to the FCI Step 2 Technology Investigations.
Tatsächlicher Beginn/ -es Ende12/03/0731/07/07

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