This workshop on "Airborne Networks and Communications" in conjunction with the annual American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Infotech@Aerospace Conference will be held in Boston, Massachusetts, on Aug. 21, 2013. The workshop will provide a discussion forum for researchers in disciplines important for airborne networking, including wireless communications, autonomous air vehicles, routing planning, cyber-physical security, and test beds, and important to real-world situations such as in disaster relief during which communications, coordination, and sensing are critical. This project provides travel support for invited speakers and for U.S. graduate students.

Project Report

The PIs organized a special workshop on "Airborne Networking and Communications" during the Infotech@Aerospace conference organized by The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). This conference was held during 19-22 August 2013 in Boston, MA. The workshop was held on August 19, 2013. The AIAA conference provided a perfect platform for the workshop. It helped us reach large number of audience and resulted in broader impact on the research community. The workshop included three sessions. It began at 9 AM and concluded at 6:30 PM. Details of the three sessions are given below. There were 35 participants including 15 students from universities across the nation. Session I was held from 9 AM to 12:00 Noon and it included the following five technical paper presentations. A Comprehensive Modeling Framework for Airborne Mobility, by Junfei Xie, Yan Wan, Kamesh Namuduri, Shengli Fu, and Jae Kim, University of North Texas, Denton, USA. Implementation of Aeronautical Network Protocols, by Mohammed J. Alenazi, Santosh Gogi, Dongsheng Zhang, Egemen K. Çetinkaya, Justin P. Rohrer, and James P. Sterbenz, University of Kansas, KS,USA. Leveraging Airborne Networks: Scene Reconstruction Using Incidental Measurements, by Sandip Roy and Rahul Dhal, Washington State University, Pullman, WA, USA. A Testbed for Multi-Domain Communication Networks Using Lego Mindstroms, by Vardhman Sheth Marigona Bokshi, Eric Pruett, Charles Drotar, Yan Wan, Shengli Fu, and Kamesh Namuduri, University of North Texas, Denton, USA. Generating Topologically Different Weather Avoidance Routes Using Mincut as Constraints, by Jit-Tat Chen, Rafal Kicinger, Metron Aviation, VA, USA and Matthias Steiner, and James Pinto, NCAE Research Applications Laboratory, Boulder, CO, USA. Session II was held from 2 PM to 4 PM and it included invited talks and panel discussion on state of the art, challenges, and opportunities in Airborne Networks. The invited speakers included the following: Serge Chaumette, Computer Science Department at Université Bordeaux, France James P. G. Sterbenz, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, University of Kansas, KS, USA David Ripplinger, MIT Lincoln Lab, Boston, MA, USA Jae H. Kim, Boeing Research & Technology, Seattle, WA, USA Robert Bonneau, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Washington D.C., USA Bow-Nan Cheng, MIT Lincoln Lab, Boston, MA, USA Session III included a student poster competition in which the following posters were presented. Cooperative Control between Multi-Platform UAS, by Abd Al Rahman Chamas, Alberto Salinas, and Jorge Vega, California State University Long Beach, USA. Multi-Agent Systems: Decentralized Connectivity Maintenance in the Presence of Agent Loss, Derya Aksaray and Dimitri Mavris, School of Aerospace Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, USA. Control of Body Freedom Flutter, C. P. Moreno, A. Kotikalpudi, H. Pfifer, and G. J. Balas, Department of Aerospace Engineering & Mechanics, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, USA. UAS sense-and-avoid systems, Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, Brigham Young University. Provo, Utah, USA. A Comprehensive Modeling Framework for Airborne Networks, Junfie Xie and Yan Wan, Department of Electrical Engineering, University of North Texas, Denton, TX, USA Protocols for Highly-Dynamic Airborne Networks, Mohammed J.F. Alenazi, Dan S. Broyles, Santosh A. Gogi, Hemanth Narra, Kamakshi Sirisha Pathapati, Kevin Peters, Dongsheng Zhang, Egemen K. Çetinkaya, Abdul Jabbar, Justin P. Rohrer, and James P.G. Sterbenz, University of Kansas, KS, USA. On Connectivity of Airborne Networks in Presence of Region-based Faults, Shahrzad Shirazipourazad, Pavel Ghosh and Arun Sen, School of Computing, Informatics and Decision System Engineering, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, USA. A Test-bed for Multi-Domain Communication Networks using LEGO Mindstorms, Vardhman J. Sheth and Yan Wan, Department of Electrical Engineering, University of North Texas, Denton, TX, USA. Outcomes There are primarily three outcomes from this workshop: (A) an understanding of the most important challenges in airborne networking and communications, (B) engaging students in research and (C) knowledge dissemination (A) Panel Discussion: The panel discussion highlighted the challenges in Airborne Networking both in short tem as well as in long term. (B) Engaging students in research: The poster session enabled several graduate and undergraduate students to showcase their research projects ranging from analytical modeling to test-bed developments for airborne networks. Students discussed their research on network connectivity, sense and avoid strategies, distributed control and coordination, multi-agent collaborative systems, and network protocols among others. (C) Knowledge dissemination: Organizing the conference in conjunction with AIAA helped us in reaching out to a larger community of researchers. The regular papers submitted to the workshop have already been disseminated to the research community through the conference proceedings. In addition, this report will also be made available online after it is approved by NSF. A webpage with the key note talks and student posters has been created. It is available for everyone to access at This website includes information about future workshop that is planned to be held in August 2014 in conjunction with ACM MobiHoc Symposium. A special issue in IEEE Communications magazine is in preparation and will be published in May, 2014.

National Science Foundation (NSF)
Division of Computer and Network Systems (CNS)
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Ralph Wachter
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University of North Texas
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