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Secure Cockpit-to-Ground Wireless Data Transfer

Description:

TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Info Systems 

OBJECTIVE: Develop a secure wireless data transfer system that can link and transmit secure data within and around a given radius of an aircraft's cockpit. It will replace the current arrangement using a bulky, heavy, inconvenient to use and unreliable cable. 

DESCRIPTION: Current arrangement requires that the transmitter and receiver units be connected with a cable. The design of this cable is complex, costly, and can decrease system reliability. Additionally, multiple power conductors are required. Many of these problems can be alleviated by using wireless communication for all of the video, tracker, text, and control data. This will significantly reduce or eliminate the requirements of the interconnect cable/connector reducing system complexity and cost and enhance system safety. This is an opportunity to increase ground crew operational efficiency along with the future ability to equip operators with state of the art cable free capabilities. This system would need to transfer secure, perhaps encrypted data, between ground crew and the aircraft, aircraft systems, and cockpit devices, and also serve as a data hub between the in-cockpit devices and ground crew devices. The encrypted data transmission range must be kept to 10 meters. Another application applies to pilot helmet-mounted connected to the aircraft by a cable. The cable transfers control information and display data between the aircraft and the helmet. The design of this cable is complex, costly, and can decrease system reliability. Additionally, multiple power conductors are required. The entire cable system must incorporate a reliable safe disconnect type of connector that permits automatic separation during ejection or emergency ground egress. Many of these problems can be alleviated by using wireless communication for all of the video, tracker, and control signals. This will significantly reduce or eliminate the requirements of the interconnect cable/connector reducing system complexity and cost and enhance system safety. Still another application is the use of wireless communication between a pod to either an iPAD or an Android device in the cockpit. Currently a cable is used for this purpose. Other considerations: . System must operate in existing EMI/EMC environment, and not cause EMI problem to aircraft. . System should not be capable of being intercepted/exploited. . A bit error detection and correction scheme must be part of the system. . The final system must be human safe. . System should support growth to higher data rates . The system could be used to replace the cable between the aircraft computer and the pilots’ or aviators’ helmets. No government furnished materials, equipment, data, or facilities will be provided. 

PHASE I: Analyze current technology and conduct a feasibility study for a system to meet requirements. Prepare top level conceptual design. Submit report. 

PHASE II: Build Wireless Communication System based on preliminary design in Phase I. Implement, demonstrate, and deliver more than one prototype system with consideration of data transfer security requirements. Prepare and submit Final Report. 

PHASE III: Military applications: Pilots. Special operations ground personnel, base security, and maintenance crew. Commercial applications: Firefighters, rescue personnel, divers, race car drivers, athletes, doctors in operating rooms. 

REFERENCES: 

1: High throughput and low latency 60 GHZ small-cell network architecture over radio over-fiber technology by N. Piers, G. Kaffas, C. Vagionas, D. Tsiokos, A. Miliou, Proc. SPIE 10128 Broadband Access Communication Technologies XI

2: Advanced wireless mobile collaborative sensing network for tactical and strategic missions, By HAO Xu, Proc. SPIE 10184. Sensor, command, control, and communication (C3I) Technologies for Homeland Security, Defense, and Law Enforcement Applications XVI

3: Terahertz wireless Communication band on Inp-related devices (Conference Paper), By Eui Su Lee, Huan-soo Kim, Jeong-woo Park, Dong Woo park, Kyung Hyan Park, Proc. SPIE 10103 Terahertz, RF, Milimeter and Submilimeter-wave Technology and Applications

4: Tunable and reconfigurable THZ devices for advanced imaging and adaptive wireless communication by L. Liu, MI B. Shams, Z. Jiang, S. Rahman, J. Hasler. L-J Cheng, P. Fay, Proc. SPIE 9934

KEYWORDS: Wireless Communication, Terahertz Wireless Communication, Helmet-mounted Systems, Cable/connector, Fighter/bomber, Secure, Data Transfer 

CONTACT(S): 

Dr. Gurdial Saini 

(937) 255-6655 

gurdial.saini@wpafb.af.mil 

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