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F10 Tactical Edge Networking

F10 Tactical Edge Network Management and Optimization

At the tactical edge, where airborne, maritime, and ground forces make split-second mission-critical decisions in constrained environments, there’s no time for delayed information or dropped communications. Every nanosecond, each information byte can make or break mission success. A mix of new and legacy equipment and systems makes connectivity even more challenging.

F10, the Fuse tactical edge network, is a modular software-based network management and optimization solution particularly suited for distributed airborne networks. Running in a virtualized environment, the F10 platform can be configured for any mission profile. It can holistically manage a large set of diverse radios to create a cross-layer optimized heterogeneous network. This means joint force warfighters can securely communicate with each other and with command centers without having to stop and consider interoperability limitations.

The virtualized environment supports autonomous and “human-on-the-loop” control of platform radios/antennas and networking, optimizing the path for maintaining an ad hoc, autonomous aerial network. F10 addresses the challenges of airborne communications and the difficulties in fielding networks on dynamically moving assets—the system always knows who’s in the air and how to reach them.

The novel, advanced algorithms Fuse developed in F10 are validated using our hardware-in-the-loop/software-in-the-loop simulation environment Tactical Airborne Network Simulator (TANS). By using scenario files containing information exchange requirements and platform orbits, we leverage a rapid-prototyping approach and provide progressive live, virtual, and constructive (LVC) testing moving from all virtual to hardware-in-the-loop (HIL) to actual hardware integration.

F10 Fast Facts

  • Designed to leverage existing proven fielded comms assets
  • Close to the radio waves—autonomous algorithms address issues like directional beam handoff, radio selection, active energy management, control plane optimization, co-site interference, bandwidth optimization, etc.
  • Tightly integrated with the Fuse network management system, including web-based user interface for holistic network view
  • Incorporates advanced networking
  • Tactical Technologies Toolset (T3) architecture with a web-based user interface, master autonomous network integrated advanced controller with access points (MANIAC/AP), and a unified heterogeneous radio controller
  • Autonomous or user-defined changes to:
    • Waveforms and data rates,
    • Tuning of network parameters including QoS,
    • Discovery of participating nodes and pointing antennas, and
    • Management of radio aware routing signaling

F10 Differentiators

  • Provides heterogeneous cross layer optimization with coordination across autonomous radios, networks, and antenna control
  • Ao100 algorithms: improve airborne network availability with optimized antenna section, continuous pointing algorithms, multicast CDL compliant LPI discovery, radio aware routing, radio agnostic coding and modulation control
  • CIRCLE (Co-Site Interference Rejection Collaboration Link Executive) allows for multiple RF systems on a single platform with minimal co-site interference
  • Heterogeneous MANET can move data across any available links
  • Fuse emulation technologies – Virtual Network Test Bed (VNTB) & Tactical Airborne Network Simulator – can help define network architecture and pre-plan for specific missions (platform orbits, information exchange requirements, network outages)
  • TAC-OP (Tactical Optimization) network techniques to enhance legacy application functionality over challenged links like HF and extremely high LPI/LPD links
  • Uses open architectures – Open Mission Systems support, open libraries, GFI code wherever possible

F10 Tactical Edge Networking

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