This paper presents a concept for a United States Coastal Area Network (U-SCAN) that is comprised of IEEE 802.11,
802.16, and satellite communications technologies. The Office of Naval Research (ONR) on behalf of the National
Oceanographic Partnership Program (NOPP) has tasked The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory
(JHU/APL) to perform an architectural study into the establishment of a United States Coastal Area Network (U-SCAN).
The goal of this study is to define a wireless network architecture that can be deployed to enable contiguous coastal area
network coverage for scientific, commercial, and homeland security (e.g. Coast Guard) applications within the United
States Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ), in a manner that is flexible, manageable, and affordable. The JHU/APL study
will ultimately provide recommendations to NOPP regarding potential network architectures and technologies that could
provide the desired capability, with a particular focus on commercial (both existing and emerging) technologies. This
paper presents the envisioned U-SCAN architecture, and presents the envisioned technical capabilities and shortcomings
of the component candidate technologies.
This paper presents a vision for a future capability-based military communications system that considers user requirements. Historically, the military has developed and fielded many specialized communications systems. While these systems solved immediate communications problems, they were not designed to operate with other systems. As information has become more important to the execution of war, the "stove-pipe" nature of the communications systems deployed by the military is no longer acceptable. Realizing this, the military has begun the transformation of communications to a network-centric communications paradigm. However, the specialized communications systems were developed in response to the widely varying environments related to military communications. These environments, and the necessity for effective communications within these environments, do not disappear under the network-centric paradigm. In fact, network-centric communications allows for one message to cross many of these environments by transiting multiple networks. The military would also like one communications approach that is capable of working well in multiple environments. This paper presents preliminary work on the creation of a framework that allows for a reconfigurable device that is capable of adapting to the physical and network environments. The framework returns to the Open Systems Interconnect (OSI) architecture with the addition of a standardized intra-layer control interface for control information exchange, a standardized data interface and a proposed device architecture based on the software radio.