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This paper considers a mixed-media packet-switched computer communication network which consists of a low-delay terrestrial store-and-forward subnet combined with a low-cost high-bandwidth satellite subnet. We show how to route traffic via ground and/or satellite links by means of static, deterministic procedures and assign capacities to channels subject to a given linear cost such that the network average delay is minimized. Two operational schemes for this network model are investigated: one is a scheme in which the satellite channel is used as a slotted ALOHA channel; the other is a new multiaccess scheme we propose in which whenever a channel collision occurs, retransmission of the involved packets will route through ground links to their destinations. The performance of both schemes is evaluated and compared in terms of cost and average packet delay tradeoffs for some examples. The results offer guidelines for the design and optimal utilization of mixed-media networks.
Date of Publication: Jan 1977