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Limiting Use of ATN When Not Needed without Requiring Explicit Pilot Action

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000241927D
Publication Date: 2015-Jun-09
Document File: 7 page(s) / 206K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Presently ATN (Aeronautical Telecommunication Network) data link connections are established between aircraft and ground stations, whenever the architecture supports ATN. Often there are cases when ATN connections are required sparingly but keeping them continuously activated causes avionics integration issues. Also significant bandwidth wastage is incurred in order to keep alive the ATN connections for all the aircrafts operating in a given area. Consequently, it is necessary to save on the bandwidth by disabling ATN connections temporarily when not needed and enabling them when needed. This paper provides a solution that understands when ATN use is required to proactively trigger this timely deactivation and activation of ATN connections leading to optimal usage of ATN resources and network bandwidth.

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Limiting Use of ATN When Not Needed without Requiring Explicit Pilot Action

Tom Judd, Tom McGuffin, Mark Erwin

ABSTRACT

Presently ATN (Aeronautical Telecommunication Network) data link connections are established between aircraft and ground stations, whenever the architecture supports ATN. Often there are cases when ATN connections are required sparingly but keeping them continuously activated causes avionics integration issues. Also significant bandwidth wastage is incurred in order to keep alive the ATN connections for all the aircrafts operating in a given area. Consequently, it is necessary to save on the bandwidth by disabling ATN connections temporarily when not needed and enabling them when needed. This paper provides a solution that understands when ATN use is required to proactively trigger this timely deactivation and activation of ATN connections leading to optimal usage of ATN resources and network bandwidth.


1. INTRODUCTION

The Aeronautical Telecommunication Network (ATN) is an inter-network architecture that allows ground/ground, air/ground, and avionic data sub networks to interoperate by adopting common interface services and protocols based on the ISO OSI reference model. The ATN comprises application entities and communication services which allow ground, air-to-ground and avionics data sub-networks to interoperate. As of now, ATN applications and networks have already been deployed in some parts of the world.

VHF Data Link or VHF Digital Link (VDL) is used for sending information between aircraft and ground stations. VDL Mode 2 for ATN was implemented operationally to support Controller Pilot Data Link Communications (CPDLC).

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ATN operates over the VDL Mode (VDLM) 2 whenever the aircraft is connected via an ATN supported VDLM2 Ground Station (GS). Presently ATN is only used for ATC operation. While an aircraft connects to a ground station via a VDLM2 Ground Station/Service provider, ATN connections are initiated as soon as the ground station GSIF (General Station Information Frame) indicates that ATN is supported. This connection is initiated irrespective of any indication that ATC ATN data link communications (i.e., PM CPDLC and CM) are to be used or not. Consequently if they are not used there is unnecessary data link traffic exchanged to establish and maintain an ATN Connection/route with the ground station. This communication link might be related to 8208 connection establishment, ES-IS Hello & IDRP via CLNP/SNDCF/8208, TP4 and IDRP keep alive messages. Not only is this communication link unnecessary, it may lead to issues causing avionics integration issues resulting in increased pilot work load even though not performing ATC communications.

Hence, there is a need to have a provision for explicit ATN activation and deactivation. But making the pilot to do it by using some button is not intuitive and is not a good human factors/HMI approach. Consequently, it is necessary and beneficial to impl...