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A systems approach for designing a radio station layout for the U.S. National Airspace Open Access

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Today's National Airspace System (NAS) is managed using an aging surveillance radar system. Current radar technology is not adequate to sustain the rapid growth of the commercial, civil, and federal aviation sectors and cannot be adapted to use emerging 21st century airspace surveillance technologies. Consequently, the FAA has embarked on a broad-reaching effort called the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) that seeks to transform today's aviation airspace management and ensure increased safety and capacity in our NAS. This dissertation presents a systems approach to Service Volume (SV) engineering, a relatively new field of engineering that has emerged in support of the FAA's Automatic Dependent Surveillance - Broadcast (ADS-B) Air Traffic Modernization Program. SV Engineering is responsible for radio station layout design that would provide the required radio frequency (RF) coverage over a set of Service Volumes. The radio station layout must be optimized to meet system performance, safety, and interference requirements while minimizing the number of radio station sites required to provide RF coverage of the entire airspace of the Unites States. The interference level requirements at the victim (of interference) receivers are the most important and stringent requirements imposed on the ADS-B radio station layout and configuration. In this dissertation, we show a novel and practical way to achieve this optimality by developing and employing several key techniques such as such as reverse radio line-of-site (RLOS) and complex entity-relationship modeling, to address the greater challenges of engineering this complex system. Given that numerous NAS radar facilities are clustered together in relative close proximity to each other, we can optimize site selection placement for coverage through a process of coverage aggregation if we anticipate and leverage the emergent properties that manifest from their aggregation. Furthermore, in this dissertation, we show the approach taken to develop an entity-relationship model that will support the data capture and distribution of RF SV design. We utilize the CORE software environment to develop a geospatial/RF design entity-relationship (ER) model schema that in conjunction with development of several advanced parsers facilitates effective data management and the communication of complex model logical and parametric detail.

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