Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Electrical Engineering


Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Richard A. Raines, PhD


As a result of the doctrines exposed in the Air Force's "Global Engagement: A Vision for the 21st Century Air Force," the concept of a "Battlelab" was devised to support and develop the key warfighting capabilities needed in the next century. Although geographically separated, these labs must have the capability to exchange information with each other in a "Virtual Battlelab Environment" (VBE). Although many types of data will be exchanged, only variable-bit-rate (VBR) video and distributed interactive simulation (DIS) traffic are modeled in the VBE. The research described in this thesis utilizes a systems engineering approach to investigate the performance of wide-area networking technologies and recornmend a connectivity solution. Three networking protocols were considered: Native ATM, IP over ATM, and LAN Emulation. In addition, three analyses were performed: performance-weighted, evenly-weighted, and cost-weighted. Native ATM was the recommended solution for the performance-weighted analysis. IP over ATM was recommended for the cost-weighted and evenly-weighted analyses, although by only slight margins over LANE. Finally, the merit of a systems engineering approach to assist in tradeoff and decision making analyses was also demonstrated.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number



Co-authored thesis. Author Vita pages are omitted.