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IEEE 802.11, OpenAir and HomeRF for 2.4 Ghz spread-spectrum wireless data communication within a metal transportation vehicle

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1 Author(s)
Cooley, H.T. ; Sandia Nat. Labs., Albuquerque, NM, USA

The proliferation of commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) and low-cost wireless communication technology has expanded into many new applications, many of which are relevant to the international security community. Although most applications of these new wireless technologies are for architectures typical of a business enterprise, the need to wirelessly monitor the transportation of nuclear materials inside a fully enclosed metal transportainer or vehicle is an important use. However, the complexity and changing performance of the different spread-spectrum protocols make a selection between these different wireless technologies difficult. The nature of the problem becomes complex within a highly RF-reflective metal trailer approximating a Faraday cage or metal box. The addition or removal of highly RF-reflective metal containers within this environment further complicates the wireless communication and causes the multipath environment to change. Tests were conducted for different wireless spread-spectrum communication technologies using worst-case scenarios for different configurations (numbers) of metal containers. This paper provides an evaluation of the results of these tests and compares the performance for IEEE 802.11, OpenAir, and HomeRF spread-spectrum protocols of a wireless communication environment typical of metal transportation vehicle which could used to transport nuclear materials.

Published in:

Security Technology, 2004. 38th Annual 2004 International Carnahan Conference on

Date of Conference:

11-14 Oct. 2004

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