PART B: NET OPERATIONS
1. In addition to net structure, another aspect of radio nets which is of concern in traffic
analysis is the degree of control exercised over the net's operation. In military communication
structures, just as in any military organization, there are seniors and subordinates. In
communications the senior station is called the Net Control Station (NCS), or the Control
Station (CT) and the subordinates are called outstations (O/S).
2. The Net Control Station is normally located close to and provides communications for the
headquarters of the senior military unit. The authority of the NCS is absolute within the scope
of technical control. It opens and closes the net, controls transmissions and clears traffic
within the net, corrects errors in operating procedures, gives or denies permission for a
station to enter or leave the net, and maintains net discipline. The extent of control exercised
by the NCS varies according to operational conditions. In a net where experienced operators
are pacing traffic smoothly, little formal control is required. When the volume of traffic is great
and operators are less experienced, the NCS may be required to exercise firm control to keep
the net organized and traffic flowing in an orderly manner.
3. The outstations normally are the radio stations of the units subordinate to the headquarters
served by the NCS.
4. In constructing a net diagram, both the CT and the O/S are represented by circles,
squares, or rectangles, with the CT being placed above the O/S. The paths of
intercommunication between the stations are represented by connecting lines regardless of
the direction of the communication.
5. In any given case, the method of operation used by a communication system is normally
determined by the size, mission, and type of unit being served. Basically, there are two types
of net operations. The presence of a controlling authority that directs the communications
activity or a radio net is called directed operation. In radio nets where a controlling authority
is absent, the operation is referred to as free operation.
6. DIRECTED OPERATION can be further broken down into two basic types. The first type is
called a "star." A star is a group of stations under a common control station (CT) wherein all
outstations (O/S) transmit only to that control. The O/S do not contact each other, and all
messages from one O/S to another are routed through the CT. Figure 1-7 represents a