Cooperation agreement between DLR and acticom for performance evaluation of RoHC in satellite links

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  • April 29, 2010

acticom and DLR announced today that the Institute of Communications and Navigation of DLR has signed a cooperation agreement with the company acticom to investigate the performance of the Robust Header Compression (RoHC) protocol in satellite links. This activity opens a new perspective to the already extensive contributions of the Institute of Communication and Navigation towards highly efficient satellite communications.

In the frame of this cooperation agreement, the RoHC protocol will be integrated into the Institute’s simulation and emulation environments for satellite communications as an extension feature. This will allow investigating performance, optimization of RoHC for satellite environments and further developments.

RoHC is a standardized (RFC 3095) method of compressing the IP, UDP, and RTP protocol headers of Internet packets. It compresses header information in data packets from 40 bytes to 1-3 bytes, greatly increasing the efficiency of multimedia transportation through packet data networks.

In terrestrial systems, the transmission of IP data becomes significantly more efficient by using the header compression capabilities of the RoHC stack, which avoid the transmission of redundant data in IP protocol headers. Exploiting such a feature in satellite links has the potential to save significant amount of resources, known to be very scarce in satellite links, improving the overall performance. RoHC is now a mandatory feature for several terrestrial telecommunication systems, like next generation mobile networks (LTE), and DLR believes that research in this direction is needed if satellite communications want to be competitive with terrestrial networks.

Being allowed to work with DLR is another interesting project for acticom and the acticom telecommunication engineers and our Robust Header Compression team,” said Gerrit Schulte, Managing director at acticom. “We are proud to work with one of the leading research institutes for space technology and satellite communication systems, and this will be another milestone to prove that RoHC is the de-facto standard when it comes to header compression over high-delay and error prone links. The integration of the RoHC stack will be a close collaboration between the DLR and acticom software engineers.

About the DLR Institute of Communications and Navigation

The Institute of Communications and Navigation develops and investigates new systems and methods for radio transmission and positioning. These are widely used in broadcasting multimedia contents as well as for internet connection of satellites, airplanes and remote areas. In the field of high rate data communications between satellite and ground the Institute works on optical free-space transmission methods. In satellite navigation the Institute puts emphasis on safety-critical applications, which require a reliable positioning and timing information, and on positioning in urban canyons and indoors. The activities of the Institute span from theoretical investigations to the experimental verification of components and systems. Its results play a major role in aeronautical applications and ground-based traffic. Visit the DLR website at