The Networks and Communication Systems Branch of the Information Technology Division (ITD) at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory conducts research and development in the area of military networks and communication systems. Our research efforts emphasize the development and adaptation of communication and networking technology to meet U.S. Navy and Department of Defense (DoD) requirements.
We adopt commercial and open-source/open-standard capabilities where possible and give particular emphasis to advancing open standards that are commercially viable and can meet DoD requirements. R&D is also focused on those areas that are DoD-unique and unlikely to be addressed by other sectors, such as development of methods to dynamically allocate communication resources that meet warfighting needs. This includes supporting network-, transport-, and application-layer functional performance over shared communication media and the development of mechanisms that enable acceptable application performance under typical wireless operational network conditions of limited data rate, frequent link outages, high packet-loss, and network dynamics caused by node mobility. We use discrete-event computer simulations, based on industry standard software tools to design and test all forms of packet-switched networks, and we implement prototype systems to test new networking concepts and capabilities.
Experiments are conducted in the laboratory, on the NRL campus, over DoD R&D networks, and at various field activities. We provide systems engineering, consultation, and support to other components of NRL, Navy, and DoD in the areas cited above.