Memo from the Consortium for Slow Commotion Research (CSCR)
RFC 1217

Document Type RFC - Informational (April 1991; No errata)
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Network Working Group                                            V. Cerf
Request for Comments: 1217                                          CSCR
                                                            1 April 1991

      Memo from the Consortium for Slow Commotion Research (CSCR)

Status of this Memo

   This RFC is in response to RFC 1216, "Gigabit Network Economics and
   Paradigm Shifts".  Distribution of this memo is unlimited.

To: Poorer Richard and Professor Kynikos

Subject: ULSNET BAA

From: Vint Cerf/CSCR

Date: 4/1/91

   The Consortium for Slow Commotion Research (CSCR) [1] is pleased to
   respond to your research program announcement (RFC 1216) on Ultra
   Low-Speed Networking (ULSNET).  CSCR proposes to carry out a major
   research and development program on low-speed, low-efficiency
   networks over a period of several eons.  Several designs are
   suggested below for your consideration.

1. Introduction

   Military requirements place a high premium on ultra-robust systems
   capable of supporting communication in extremely hostile
   environments.  A major contributing factor in the survivability of
   systems is a high degree of redundancy.  CSCR believes that the
   system designs offered below exhibit extraordinary redundancy
   features which should be of great interest to DARPA and the
   Department of Defense.

2. Jam-Resistant Land Mobile Communications

   This system uses a highly redundant optical communication technique
   to achieve ultra-low, ultra-robust transmission.  The basic unit is
   the M1A1 tank.  Each tank is labelled with the number 0 or 1 painted
   four feet high on the tank turret in yellow, day-glo luminescent
   paint.  Several detection methods are under consideration:

     (a)  A tree or sand-dune mounted forward observer (FO) radios
          to a reach echelon main frame computer the binary values

Cerf                                                            [Page 1]
RFC 1217                       ULSNET BAA                     April 1991

          of tanks moving in a serial column.  The mainframe decodes
          the binary values and voice-synthesizes the alphameric
          ASCII-encoded messages which is then radioed back to the
          FO.  The FO then dispatches a runner to his unit HQ with
          the message.  The system design includes two redundant,
          emergency back-up forward observers in different trees
          with a third in reserve in a foxhole.

     (b)  Wide-area communication by means of overhead
          reconnaissance satellites which detect the binary signals
          from the M1A1 mobile system and download this
          information for processing in special U.S. facilities in the
          Washington, D.C. area.  A Convection Machine [2] system
          will be used to perform a codebook table look-up to decode
          the binary message.  The decoded message will be relayed
          by morse-code over a packet meteor burst communications
          channel to the appropriate Division headquarters.

     (c)  An important improvement in the sensitivity of this system
          can be obtained by means of a coherent detection strategy.
          Using long baseline interferometry, phase differences
          among the advancing tank column elements will be used to
          signal a secondary message to select among a set of
          codebooks in the Convenction Machine.  The phase analysis
          will be carried out using Landsat imagery enhanced by
          suitable processing at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.  The
          Landsat images (of the moving tanks) will be correlated
          with SPOT Image images to obtain the phase-encoded
          information.  The resulting data will be faxed to
          Washington, D.C., for use in the Convection Machine
          decoding step.  The remainder of this process is as for (b)
          above.

     (d)  It is proposed to use SIMNET to simulate this system.

3. Low Speed Undersea Communication

   Using the 16" guns of the Battleship Missouri, a pulse-code modulated
   message will be transmitted via the Pacific Ocean to the Ames
   Research Center in California.  Using a combination of fixed and
   towed acoustic hydrophone arrays, the PCM signal will be detected,
   recorded, enhanced and analyzed both at fixed installations and
   aboard undersea vessels which have been suitably equipped.  An
   alternative acoustic source is to use M1A1 main battle tanks firing
   150 mm H.E. ordnance.  It is proposed to conduct tests of this method
   in the Persian Gulf during the summer of 1991.

Cerf                                                            [Page 2]
RFC 1217                       ULSNET BAA                     April 1991

4. Jam-Resistant Underwater Communication

   The ULS system proposed in (2) above has the weakness that it is
   readily jammed by simple depth charge explosions or other sources of
   acoustic noise (e.g., Analog Equipment Corporation DUCK-TALK voice
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