Improving information flows over high-data-rate, highly mobile and highly dynamic links, both in-theater and at the edge of air, ground and space networks, is necessary for creating an operationally responsive network with seamless connectivity. A cognitive cross-layer protocol framework for wireless networks, where primary users and cognitive radio (CR) users can autonomously cooperate, will be useful. To address this, OSD/Air Force has awarded IAI and its collaborator, State University of New York at Buffalo, a follow-on contract entitled “Dynamic Cross-Layer Design for Robust Cognitive Networking with Physical Channel and Delay Awareness.” A dynamic cross-layer Cognitive Radio nEtworking ArchiTecturE (CREATE) solution will be developed. CREATE will adapt the network protocol stack for spectrum dominance and interoperability of heterogeneous communications systems across terrestrial, aerial and space domains. A cross-layer design of spectrum allocation, routing, cooperative relaying, scheduling and power control will optimize network performance, while exploring the tradeoffs to balance among throughput, delay, security and energy objectives. A distributed control capability helps with autonomously adapting to network dynamics. The solutions will be validated via experimentation and software-defined-radio prototyping within an emulated Airborne Network (AN) environment. Realistic physical channel effects will be generated in a Network Emulation Simulation Testbed (NEST), which is based on IAI’s Radio Frequency Network Emulator Simulator Tool, RF-NEST. CREATE NEST will adaptively reconfigure the physical-layer and routing parameter space to increase the overall spectrum efficiency and utilization in heterogeneous communications with diverse traffic demands. It will support integrated air, ground and space networking by providing the AF Warfighter Network with seamless connectivity, transparent to the user.