The WirelessCabin system concept and architecture will be verified by setting up a WirelessCabin demonstrator, which shall be able to show various demonstrator scenarios (show cases).

The following show cases are foreseen for the implementation in the demonstrator:

1) GSM voice communications in the cabin (3 phases with different implementation stages)

2) Crew communications using VoIP (PDAs with BT headset for voice communications and data (cabin logbook function)

3) Bluetooth access in the cabin

4) Passenger authentication

5) Cabin service control (QoS support)

6) L/Ku band satellite handover

7) In/Outbound Streaming

8) VPN and mobility support

9) GSM power control

Above scenarios show the most important aspects of WirelessCabin:

w        wireless voice and data services in the cabin

w        mobility support of passengers by roaming with their home networks, and mobility support of the aircraft in different satellite transport segments

w        QoS support for services, depending on the service type and the available transport segment bandwidth

w        Authentication of the passenger using a 3GPP network with RADIUS

w        The effect of interference reduction and roaming prevention to terrestrial networks is shown in the power control scenario.

The scenarios show all radio access networks.


1.1            Scenario 1: GSM Voice Communication

1.1.1              Scenario Objectives

w        This scenario shall demonstrate the availability of GSM services onboard the aircraft. The possibility to place calls from a mobile phone in the aircraft to the ground network as well as receiving calls from the ground fixed or mobile network will be demonstrated. For the GSM voice scenario, three different development phases will be considered, which require different development efforts and components. The provided services of the three phases (or sub-scenarios) vary as well.

w        The all-IP approach is shown for the GSM network, with interworking with VoIP applications, but also with adopting IETF protocols (RADIUS) for authetication of the GSM network and mapping it to the PLMN functions.

w        It will also be shown that the correct functioning of the aircraft electronic is not jeopardized by the system (mobile phones, BTS), thereby tackling the open issues of today regarding mobile phone usage onboard an aircraft and controlling their behavior.

1.1.2              GSM Voice Communication scenario

w        Passengers bring in their GSM mobile phones

w        Passengers can use GSM voice services

w        Passengers are roamed

w        Passengers can make outgoing phone calls

w        Passengers can receive incoming phone calls


This scenario can be characterized by having a BTS onboard the aircraft, which is transported via the service integration domain and the satellite transport network to the ground service provider domain. The service integration domain hosts BSC and MSC software functions. The functions are used for control of the BTS and and for call mobility (routing) support. It will be possible to route calls in the cabin (cabin-to-cabin communications) without using the satellite network and any ground segment domain functions. Such as scenario is interesting for crew communications (even if a satellite link is not available). In the packet domain (PS, which will however be not implemented) this would correspond to a support of local content (in-cabin) content. Apart from the routing support, the soft MSC is performing trans-coding of the voice data. On the ground service provider side, a VoIP gateway with H.232 gate keeping can thus be used for interconnection with terrestrial services.

AAA functionality is hosted in the service integration domain as well. This function will intercept attach messages and convert the messages into RADIUS messages. In the ground service provider domain, a Radius-based AAA server and SS7 gateway is hosted. It provides mobility support by interworking and forwarding the authentication messages and location updates with a HLR of a terrestrial provider. Incoming and outgoing calls are possible exactly as on ground, using the standard personal mobile phone number, and real mobility can be achieved.


Figure Overview of GSM Voice Communication Scenario