SWING project has been developed with the objective of ECI (European Critical Infrastructure) protection against the threats or terrorist attacks aimed to inhibit their communications possibility. The case of maritime governmental agencies was taken in consideration. Terrorist attacks, able to put out of order for a long period the Internet connections capabilities, expose the maritime governmental agencies te elevated risks of vulnerability. In fact nowadays essential information is transferred by means of Internet both for management and control. Even if the Internet is on the overall robust, not dependent upon a single machine or cable, it can however be object of terroristic attack. In the above described project results we have shown that it is possible to operate a prototype of a HF-VHF radio connection system, to replace broad-band communications in case of threat and/or terroristic attack on the internet based communication. In more detail we have shown that in the extreme case of complete failure of the broadband communication a minimum flux of essential information for the management and control in case of wide scale terrorist attacks able to render Internet links useless over the Mediterranean region can be maintained.
The SWING project had 19 activities as reported in table 0.1. This final report of the whole project reports on the accomplishment of these objectives and namely
- Particular critical infrastructure and the study Internet communications criticality of the maritime governmental agencies, were identified and recognized;
- All the requirements necessary for the management, and survival of the HF radio network, were considered and valuated with the radio electric quantities in transmission/reception, modulation, and other techniques to transfer data packets and voice communication;
- Internet communications criticality was studied and a methodology to alert HF network system of the maritime governmental agencies by monitoring and checking the Internet traffic and identifying the local or regional Internet failures, was developed;
- Communication software and hardware tools supporting reliable and interoperable Short Wave radio communication techniques for the maritime governmental agencies protection, proposing a solution of the HF network architecture in order to avoid data packets collisions and communication conflicts, was developed;
- A frequency management and a link optimization system, taking into account the special characteristics of the ionospheric channel and radio interfering frequencies was developed;
- A radio-communication architecture for a distributed South European short wave radio network and to realize a 4 TX/RX terminals of HF stations, was designed;
- A SVP and a DSVF able to run in every TX/RX terminal was finally designed.
The aim of SWING has been to demonstrate that an high survival HF radio network (data/voice) can real time support communications among ECIs and CGAs, maintaining the minimum flux of essential information, for the management and control in case of wide scale terrorist attacks able to render Internet links useless over the Mediterranean region. The idea SWING was conceived thinking the role of Internet in communication. Internet has been defined as a massive “network of networks” that consists of millions of private, public including critical infrastructures linked by a broad band network to serve billions of users worldwide. Internet carries a vast amount of information resources and services, including the information to support critical Infrastructure. On the other hand, threats, vulnerabilities and risks have grown exponentially with the proliferation of use and dependence on the Internet communications. SWING activities focused the interest towards data/information exchange among maritime infrastructure identified as ECIs and the relative controlling agencies CGAs utilizing Internet broadband communication. In such a context it was easy to envisage the potential risk of wide scale terroristic attacks paralyzing broadband communications for relevant periods. Therefore, in order to prevent the potential black out of vital or priority information exchanges supporting critical infrastructures in such a catastrophic event, SWING project has been identified as a suitable solution. SWING is an emergency back-up system easily deployable in the selected ECIs and CGAs. Such a system is studied in some details including a SVP and DSVF supervisors able to manage and control the main requirements for the critical information exchange. All aspects concerning HF network communication both in physical and logical point of view were studied and the best solutions were proposed. In each SWING node equipped with workstation/server, the SVP-DSVF is active managing the network terminal by checking the Internet functionalities, activating/deactivating the HF back-up network in case of Internet failures. SVP-DSVF also manages all the logical and physical layers of the HF communications and selects the optimal frequencies for reliable communication link. Finally to demonstrate the feasibility of SWING project, the most advanced and inexpensive technology available in the market was used to realize 4 RX/TX terminals. In the prototype the Universal Software Radio Peripheral is the core reconfigurable hardware. It allows general purpose computers (or workstation) to control both the network requirements and the reconfigurable hardware using an high bandwidth Gigabit Ethernet bus. It is possible to perform all of the operations like waveform generation and baseband processing such as filtering and modulation and demodulation, high-speed digital up and down conversion from baseband to IF using the on board FPGA. In spite of the HF band limitations, low data throughput, essential information can be safely exchanged without requiring expensive technologies or cabling connections between the critical infrastructure considered in SWING project.