Accession Number:

ADA460833

Title:

Terminal Radar Approach Control: Measures of Voice Communications System Performance

Descriptive Note:

Final rept.

Corporate Author:

FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION OKLAHOMA CITY OK CIVIL AEROMEDICAL INST

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2005-10-01

Pagination or Media Count:

24.0

Abstract:

Effective communications in the National Airspace System NAS is an essential safety component of successful air travel. As the NAS migrates from its current ground infrastructure and voice communications system to one that encompasses both ground and airborne systems, digital data transmission may become the principal communication medium. As technological advances lead to innovations in communications system development, these emerging systems will be evaluated against the existing legacy systems performance parameters such as setup delay, voice streaming, pause duration, and message propagation. The data presented here are but a first step in providing objective and quantifiable communications system performance metrics that may prove valuable to communication systems developers and personnel charged with evaluating, certifying, and deploying the next generation of communications systems. The authors analyzed nearly 8,000 transmissions that represented the busiest air-ground communications from the five terminal radar approach control facilities with the highest number of operations in the contiguous United States. Typically, setup delays lasted 81 ms, voice streaming 2568 ms, pause duration 127 ms, and message propagation 73 ms for a total of 2849 ms per transmission. On average, transmissions were separated by 1736 ms of silence. Disruptions to efficient information transfer can result from blocked, stepped-on, and clipped transmissions - but they are rare events and occurred in only 1.16 of the sampled transmissions. A comparison between aircraft with and without disruptions revealed that when a disruption was present, an average of 14.54 messages were transmitted, compared with an average of 9.90 messages when no disruption was present. Even so, there appears to be some type of a detection mechanism in place to alert the controller to the presence o

Subject Categories:

  • Air Navigation and Guidance
  • Active and Passive Radar Detection and Equipment
  • Radio Communications

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE