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Harmonising Spectrum for Low Power Radio Devices. Bob Barron Head of Technology Sectors Unit Radiocommunications Agency. Spectrum Harmonisation. Advantages of harmonisation for Low Power Radio European harmonisation forums Developing a UK Position Hot issues

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Harmonising SpectrumforLow Power Radio Devices

Bob Barron

Head of Technology Sectors Unit

Radiocommunications Agency

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Spectrum Harmonisation

  • Advantages of harmonisation for Low Power Radio

  • European harmonisation forums

  • Developing a UK Position

  • Hot issues

  • Proposed Changes to UK Exemption Regulations

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Harmonisation: the basics

Reaching international agreement on common…….

  • technical standards

  • frequency band limits

  • regulations concerning use

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Harmonisation: the advantages

  • for industry:

  • larger potential product market

  • for users:

    “cross border” mobility

  • for regulators:

    improved spectrum efficiency

 Particularly appropriate/ advantageous for “de-regulated” uncoordinated (ubiquitous) low power devices

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The relevant European forums

Technical Standards

Spectrum Management

TC ERM Task Groups

TG 11- Wide Band Data Systems

TG 17 - Broadcasting and Ancillaries

TG 28 - Generic SRD*

TG 29 - Road Transport & Telematics*

TG 30- Wireless Medical Devices*

TG 31- Ultra Wide Band & Radar*

*Formerly RP08

Working Group FM

Working Group RR

Working Group SE

Project Team SE24

SRD Maintenance Group

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CEPT Working Groups

  • Radio Regulatory WGRR

  • Frequency Management WGFM

  • Spectrum Engineering WGSE

  • Conference Preparatory CPG (WRC2003)

In addition, there are a number of Project teams associated with, and reporting to, the Working Groups.

These deal with specific issues (e.g. WGSE PT SE24 for SRDs)

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CEPT Project Team SE24

Reports to CEPT Working Group Spectrum Engineering

  • PT membership includes administrations and industry

  • Supports WG FM activities on SRDs

  • Undertakes SRD compatibility studies

  • Commissions any necessary practical work

  • Works closely with the ERO SRD Maintenance Group

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European Radiocommunications OfficeSRD Maintenance Group

  • Maintains ERC Recommendation 70-03

  • Proposes band plans

  • Develops ERC (ECC) Decisions on SRDs

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ERC Recommendation 70-03Relating to the Use of Short Range Devices

Sets out common spectrum allocations for SRDs:

  • Appendix 1: Specific applications & technical parameters

  • Appendix 2: Relevant ERC Decisions & ETSI Standards

  • Appendix 3: National Restrictions

ERC Rec 70-03 must be continually maintained to keep pace with changing requirements and moves towards increased harmonisation of SRD allocations & regulations

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ERC (ECC) Decisions on SRDsERC/DEC (01)01 to ERC/DEC(01)18 inclusive

Total 18 new Decisions agreed in 2001, covering:

  • Non specific SRDs

  • Radio LANs

  • Movement Detection / Alert

  • Alarms

  • Model Control

  • Inductive applications

  • Medical Implants

  • Wireless Audio

  • Decisions based heavily on ERC Rec 70-03

  • UK Committed to implementing them all

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    RA / LPRA Forum

    • Meets quarterly;

    • Briefs LPRA council members on regulations;

    • Briefs RA officials on industry requirements;

    • Informs RA spectrum policy committee

    • Facilitated by RA2/Technology Sectors Unit (TSU)

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    RA Technology Sectors Unit

    (a brief commercial interlude!)

    The RA Business Unit for Low Power Radio

    Represents SRD interests within the Agency

    and also responsible for……..

    • Processing of allTest & Development Licence applications

    • All policy issues concerning implementation of RTTE Directive

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    RA Technology Sectors Unit


    • Low Power Devices Information Sheet - RA114

    • Test & Development Application Form- RA382

    • RTTE UK SRD Interface Requirements - IR2030

    Available today at the RA Stand, or from www.radio.gov.uk

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    The RTTE DirectiveA harmonised solution to equipment conformity

    Telecommunication Conformity Assessment & Market Surveillance Committee (TCAM)

    • “Class A” Equipment requires no Notification

    • Proposed extension of Class A to more SRDs

    • But restricted due to limited spectrum harmonisation

    • Referred by TCAM to SRD Maintenance Group

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    Harmonisation: current “hot topics”

    • Duty Cycles in “400 MHz” SRD bands

    • Ultra Wide Band

      • technical compatibility

      • regulations

    • 862 - 870 MHz Review

      • A new allocation for RFID?

      • Introduction of FHSS

      • narrow / wide band channels

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    UHF Duty Cycles

    • Objective is to:

      • Minimise probability of co-channel interference

      • Maximise use, and improve access to band

    Current proposal:




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    Ultra Wide Band

    • A promising innovation

    • Many potential commercial applications

    • Solution to spectrum shortage in certain areas?

    • Very low average power (cumulative effects?)

    • Certainly justifies further consideration

      But need to protect existing users…….

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    UWB Study

    • Any UWB regulations need to be decided at European level

    • First phase of study defined by CEPT PT SE24

    • Practical compatibility tests carried out by RA in support of SE24

    • C/I determined, using proprietary UWB, for a range of services:

    • DVB-T

    • T-DAB

    • GSM

    • Bluetooth

    SE24 Study Report, including protection distances based on RA test results, to be presented at a proposed ERO sponsored UWB Workshop in March 2002.

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    862 - 870 MHz review

    Borne out of ERO Detailed Spectrum Investigation Phase III……..

    • Consultation on future industry requirements

      • bandwidths

      • power levels

      • duty cycles

      • access technologies

    • Main area of consideration is 865 - 868 MHz (ex CT2)

    • Need for compatibility studies to verify any bandplans:

      • introduction of spread spectrum

      • possible RFID allocation

    • Networks & Third Party Traffic?

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    UK Licence Exemption Regulations Statutory Instrument SI 930 1999

    • All use of radio subject to individual licensing (WT Act)

    • Except certain (generally low power) devices

    • Exempt devices must conform to RTTE Directive

    • But Exemption in SI 930 1999 does not apply….

      “……to relevant apparatus”…….. “by means of which a telecommunication service is provided by way of business to another person”

    i.e. no commercial third party traffic!

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    Exemption RegulationsThe rationale for proposed changes

    • Market demand for broadband public access

      (particularly in “hot spots” such as airport lounges)

    • Advent of “polite” access technologies

    • Recommendations of 5GHz Advisory Group

      (particularly public & private use)

    N.B. also a recent European Commission Licensing Committee initiative to determine member states’ regulatory policy concerning Public Access Broadband R-LAN Services

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    Licence Exempt Public Services?


    • Published 19th October

    • Replies by 11th January

    • Available on RA Website

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    National Consultation

    Three regulatory scenarios……….

    ………..and nine questions.

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    National ConsultationThe three regulatory scenarios

    • Maintain “status quo”

      (no public services without a licence)

    • Some public use but with a light regulatory regime

      (e.g. indoor use only?)

    • Licence Exempt Public Services

      (public & private use of certain bands without licence)

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    National ConsultationThe nine questions


    • potential gains & benefits

    • interference to existing users

    • congestion

    • channel access techniques

    • types of commercial services envisaged

    • quality of service in de-regulated spectrum

    • suitability of specific bands

    • potential problems

    • timescales

      LPRA members views on these and any other relevant issues raised by the proposals will be particularly welcome!


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    Thank you!