Broadband wireless millimeter wavelength services provided from a High Altitude Long Operation (HALO™) Aircraft are now feasible. Our talk will emphasize the conceptual design of a "bandwidth-on-demand" wireless network whose data rates to and from the subscriber will measure in the multi-megabit per second range. A variety of metropolitan area spectrum bands offer the needed bandwidth. An attractive choice is the LMDS band near 28 GHz and system characteristics at this frequency will be described.
The HALO™ Aircraft fuselage will house packet switching circuitry and fast digital network functions. The communications antenna and related components will be located in a pod suspended below the aircraft fuselage. To offer "ubiquitous" service throughout a large region, the HALO™ antenna will utilize multiple beams arranged in a typical cellular pattern. Broadband channels to subscribers in adjacent cells will be separated in frequency. As the beams traverse over a user location, the virtual path through the packet switch will be changed to perform a beam-to-beam handoff.