Date of Award


Degree Type



Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Konangi, Vijaya

Subject Headings

Aeronautical instruments, Radio in navigation, Communication, Operations research, National Airspace System (U.S.), VDL Mode 2 VDL2 VDL M2 aeronautical communication frequency reuse capacity frequency planning NextGen Data Comm OPNET Simulation co-channel interference aircraft FAA NAS National Airspace System


VDL Mode 2 is the principal data communication technology for aeronautical communications implemented in the NextGen project for the National Airspace System (NAS), with potentially worldwide service. Aeronautical communications have strict transmission delay standards for safety considerations. Meeting the strict standards significantly drops the capacity of the number of aircraft that can communicate using the Very High Frequency (VHF) Data Radio (VDR). In this thesis, three methods of increasing the capacity while maintaining the strict standards are evaluated: transmit power control, load regulation and ground station placement. A simulation model using OPNET software is used for testing. Load regulation shows some improvement, while transmit power control is not beneficial. The best results are obtained from optimal ground station placement, with over 300 percent capacity improvement in certain scenarios