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Radio forum backs FCC notice on flexible spectrum

Posted: 22 Dec 2003 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:software defined radio forum? federal communications commission? fcc? networking?

The Software Defined Radio Forum applauded the Federal Communications Commission's review announced of technologies to support flexible and efficient use of spectrum.

The FCC Notice of Proposed Rulemaking will look specifically at both SDR and related "cognitive radio" technology that senses its environment and adaptively reconfigures frequencies or modulation to respond to environmental interference.

Mike Chartier, Intel Corp.'s representative on SDR Forum and chairman of the forum's regulatory committee, said three areas in the FCC notice were of particular interest to commissioners. First, the agency will pay close attention to how SDR and cognitive radio systems interoperate with public safety and local government radio systems.

Second, the FCC is seeking ways to enable a secondary market, allowing cities that own spectrum to lease to other commercial users if the spectrum is unused. Chartier said some FCC members cautioned that there must be ways for governments to lease back such spectrum in the event of an emergency.

Finally, the FCC is exploring ways for broadband radio operators to increase the transmission power in rural areas.

While the main focus of the review is to find the best technologies to make spectrum more flexible, Chartier said the FCC action was central to the SDR Forum's mission, since technologies that allow a radio to change its operating parameters in the field will be central to increasing spectrum efficiency and flexibility.

In a statement, FCC Chairman Michael Powell added: "We will consider the technical capabilities as well as proposed changes to the Commission's rules and equipment authorization processes to accommodate and enable more efficient use of software defined radio and cognitive radio system technologies."

Powell also highlighted "the potential of smart radios to facilitate spectrum leasing transactions, including possible leasing of public safety spectrum that would not otherwise be possible without the technology."

- Loring Wirbel

EE Time

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