The AeroMACS technology is based on IEEE802.16e which is also the WiMAX standard. The RUGGEDCOM WIN family supports IEEE802.16e with set of frequencies starting at 1.4 GHz, covering specific frequency bands all the way to 5.8 GHz. Using the 5091–5150 MHz band, allocated by the ITU at the World Radio Communication Conference 2007 (WRC-07), the RUGGEDCOM WIN products are able to offer AeroMACS services to airports around the world.
AeroMACS is one of the three core technologies of the Future Communication Infrastructure (FCI) framework, which combines the vision of the FAA’s Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) in the US, and Europe’s Single European Sky ATM Research (SESAR). The other technologies are satellite for communication with airplanes over the ocean and LDACS for terrestrial air/ground system, used to communicate with airplanes over ground and high in the air.
The WiMAX technology was selected for its unique Quality of Service (QoS) characteristics and its communication performance advantages. The high throughput, modern authentication and encryption, low delay, uplink basing and mobility (hand-over) capabilities are a few of the important characteristics of WiMAX.
AeroMACS provides the following features for the next generation of airport communications:
Broadband: 20 Mb/s ~ 40 Mb/s at maximum.
Broad coverage: 1 ~ 12 km range.
Data oriented / Machine-to-Machine communications.
Always being connected.
Low failure rate (high availability).
Easy and fast installation.
Siemens offers three rugged wireless network products for setting up wireless networks in airports: the RUGGEDCOM WIN7251 base station, alongside RUGGEDCOM WIN5251 permanently installed subscriber unit and RUGGEDCOM WIN5151 mobile subscriber unit. These products extend the above feature set to provide a high value, unique offering with the following additional features:
Extended cell range: coverage up to 40 km.
Standalone mode: no need for 3rd party ASN server. All required logic to provide routing and mobility is embedded in the base station.
Full Layer 2 deployment option, including encrypted multicast VLANs support.
In order to create an industry standard and an ecosystem of vendors supporting AeroMACS, the WiMAX forum created a function list (PICS). Together with Siemens the WiMAX Forum created the certification test items (PCT, RCT, MIOT) in the AeroMACS-PICS. To guarantee and certify the interoperability of different vendors, a Certification Working Group was established in the WIMAX forum. Siemens Ruggedcom is an active member of this group.