spectrum on a budget e ducause october 9 2006 mitchell lazarus 703 812 0440 lazarus@fhhlaw com n.
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Spectrum on a Budget E DUCAUSE October 9, 2006 Mitchell Lazarus | 703-812-0440 | lazarus@fhhlaw.com. Overview. Criteria for evaluating spectrum FCC licensing regimes Educational Broadband Service (formerly ITFS) LMDS, 24 GHz, 39 GHz Fixed service New unlicensed bands expanded 5 GHz

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overview
Overview
  • Criteria for evaluating spectrum
  • FCC licensing regimes
  • Educational Broadband Service (formerly ITFS)
  • LMDS, 24 GHz, 39 GHz
  • Fixed service
  • New unlicensed bands
    • expanded 5 GHz
    • 24-24.25 GHz
    • 57-64 GHz
    • 92-95 GHz
    • TV white space
  • Hybrid licensing schemes.
introduction
Introduction
  • Spectrum is the new real estate
    • essential for commerce and education
    • fixed supply – i.e., “they’re not making any more of it”
    • location (frequency) is everything
  • Well-established locations are crowded and expensive
    • bargains are still available in less developed areas.
criteria for evaluating spectrum
Criteria for Evaluating Spectrum
  • End-user compatibility
    • (consumer end use: Wi-Fi)
  • Frequency range
    • low: better propagation and building penetration
    • high: better directionality, smaller antennas
  • Degree of congestion (reduces reliability and throughput)
  • Cost of spectrum
    • auction / lease / “free” license / unlicensed
  • Cost (and availability) of equipment
    • worse for higher frequencies, newly authorized bands
  • FCC rules (power limits, service restrictions).
fcc licensing regimes
FCC Licensing Regimes
  • Exclusive license
    • e.g., BRS/EBS, others
    • most are now auctioned; some can be leased
  • Frequency coordination
    • fixed microwave
    • spectrum is free; but entrant must protect incumbents
  • Unlicensed operation
    • Wi-Fi, Bluethooth, many others
    • spectrum is free; but some bands are congested
  • Hybrid schemes
    • mostly in newly authorized bands
    • promising for reliable, low-cost implementations.
ebs brs background
EBS/BRS -- Background
  • Formerly 31 video channels at 2500-2690 MHz
  • Educational Broadband Service (EBS)
    • formerly Instructional Television Fixed Service (ITFS), established in 1963
    • used to distribute educational programming
  • Broadband Radio Service (BRS)
    • formerly Multichannel Multipoint Distribution Service (MMDS), established in 1983
    • used for “wireless cable” entertainment services
    • MMDS often leased additional capacity from ITFS
      • and often paid for ITFS facilities.
ebs brs evolution
EBS/BRS – Evolution
  • “White space” around BRS licenses auctioned in 1995-96
    • Sprint now holds a majority of BRS area licenses
    • (EBS white space still open)
  • Transition from video delivery to two-way broadband:
    • 1996: data delivery
    • 1998: two-way digital operation
    • 2001: mobile service
    • 2004: EBS and BRS frequencies repackaged
    • 2006: rules for transition to new frequency plan.
repackaged ebs
Repackaged EBS
  • Three band segments:
    • upper and lower, each: 12 5.5 MHz, 1  6 MHz, 1  4 GHz
    • middle: 7  6 MHz (suitable for current video service)
  • ITFS now holding four 6 MHz channels will receive:
    • one 6 MHz in middle band
    • three 5.5 MHz in lower or upper band
    • one 1 MHz in a 4 MH band
  • ITFS now holding one 6 MHz channel will receive:
    • one 6 MHz in middle or one 5.5 MHz in lower or upper.
changing ebs operation
Changing EBS Operation
  • Incumbents are protected against interference
  • Conversion to new frequencies will be fully funded
    • BRS licensees will negotiate transition
  • Leasing of EBS spectrum is allowed
    • licensees must reserve 5% for their own use
    • licensees have certain rights to recapture spectrum.
ebs coming developments
EBS – Coming Developments
  • FCC plans to auction “white space” around EBS licenses
  • Only EBS eligibles may participate
    • but EBS bidders can accept funding from commercial interests, then lease out spectrum
  • Auction not yet scheduled
    • will be offered by geographic areas
    • may be separate channels or all channels together.
lmds 24 ghz 39 ghz
LMDS, 24 GHz, 39 GHz
  • All underused bands:
    • Local Multipoint Distribution Service (LMDS)
      • 27.5- 29.25, 31-31.3 GHz (auctioned 1998)
    • 24 GHz (auctioned 2004)
      • 24.25-24.45, 25.05-25.25 GHz
    • 39 GHz (auctioned 2000)
      • 38.6 - 40.0 GHz
  • All have 10-year license terms
  • Renewal requires “substantial service”
    • licensees may be amenable to educational uses.
fixed service
Fixed Service
  • Suitable for long-distance, high-speed communication among fixed points
  • Equipment is readily available
  • Spectrum is free
    • but requires frequency coordination and license
      • not free -- $1-2.5K per link
      • newcomers must fit in among existing users
  • Bands (partial listing)
    • 10.55-10.68 GHz
    • 10.7-11.7 GHz
    • 17.7-19.7 GHz (with gaps)
    • 21.2-23.6 GHz.
unlicensed operation principles
Unlicensed Operation -- Principles
  • FCC sets technical rules (power, etc.)
    • intended to minimize interference to other users
  • Device is FCC certified as complying with technical rules
    • must be labeled with “FCC ID” number
  • Anyone may operate a certified device anywhere in U.S.
  • Interference rules:
    • an unlicensed device must accept all interference
    • an unlicensed device may not cause harmful interference to a licensed user.
old unlicensed bands
“Old” Unlicensed Bands
  • 902-928 MHz
    • shared with licensed users
    • extremely congested
  • 2400-2483.5 MHz
    • Wi-Fi “b” & “g”
    • shared with microwave ovens, cordless phones, etc.
    • moderately congested, getting worse fast
  • 5725-5850 MHz
    • Wi-Fi “a”
    • rapidly becoming congested
  • Maximum power in all bands: 4+ watts
    • most applications use only a few hundredths of a watt.
new unlicensed bands
“New” Unlicensed Bands
  • expanded 5 GHz
  • 24-24.25 GHz
  • 57-64 GHz
  • 92-95 GHz
  • TV white space (pending).
expanded 5 ghz
Expanded 5 GHz
  • FCC added 255 MHz to 5 GHz band
    • tripled the band
  • “Dynamic frequency selection” (DFS) required to protect federal radars
    • devices must monitor for radars, change frequency
  • “Transmit power control” (TPC) required
    • automatically reduces output power to minimum needed
  • Should eventually take pressure off Wi-Fi b & g.
24 24 25 ghz
24-24.25 GHz
  • Lightly used
  • Maximum power for area coverage: 1/5o watt
    • comparable to most Wi-Fi
  • Point-to-point operation
    • maximum power: 1.9 watts
    • only in upper 80% of band
    • suitable for multiple T-1 speeds over hundreds of meters.
57 64 ghz
57-64 GHz
  • Lightly used band; mature technology
  • Provides extremely high data rates
    • can reach multiple gigabits/second
  • Tight antenna focus
    • hinders eavesdropping; improves security
  • Maximum power: 10 watts
  • Factors limiting range:
    • absorption by atmospheric oxygen
    • high rain fade.
92 95 ghz
92-95 GHz
  • Very clean spectrum
  • Very high data rates possible
  • Maximum power: 10 watts
  • But limited to indoor operation.
    • best regarded as experimental.
tv white space proposed
TV White Space (Proposed)
  • FCC considering unlicensed use of vacant TV channels
    • proposes fixed and mobile applications
    • broadcasters oppose
  • IEEE (standards group) recommends fixed use only
    • e.g., for local broadband distribution
    • IEEE-proposed interference protection:
      • base station programmed for locally vacant channels
      • remote stations operate only under control of base
      • all remotes monitor for TV signals and report to base
  • FCC announcement expected October 12.
3650 3700 mhz
3650-3700 MHz
  • Every license allows nationwide use of the entire band
    • fixed and base stations are entered in an FCC database
      • new stations must protect incumbents
    • mobile stations require a control signal from a fixed or base station
  • Radios must use spectrum-sharing protocols
  • Licensees resolve interference issues among themselves
  • Band is under-used
    • commercial interests are wary of non-exclusive spectrum.
71 76 81 86 92 95 ghz
71-76, 81-86, 92-95 GHz
  • Every license allows nationwide use of any bandwidth
    • can be used only for point-to-point communication
  • Licensees register links in an automated database
    • new links must protect earlier-registered links
  • If harmful interference occurs, the later-registered link must resolve it
    • assumption: beams are narrow and will rarely interfere.
conclusion
Conclusion
  • Safe, established spectrum options are usually the most expensive
  • The FCC and manufacturers are working to open new bands
  • A willingness to innovate is the best route to reliable communications at low cost.
slide28
Thank you!

Mitchell Lazarus | 703-812-0440 | lazarus@fhhlaw.com