Pilot Program to Monitor Spectrum

The continued growth in demand for spectrum for commercial wireless services, unlicensed devices, and government operations is increasing at the federal, state, local tribal, or territorial levels. This need for spectrum focuses attention on how policy makers, researchers, and industry stakeholders are going to identify, relocate, or provide for spectrum sharing opportunities now and in the future.

Technologies are needed to develop a variety of different networks so that users can share the same spectrum bands in the same geographic areas for greater utilization and efficiency. However, assessing these opportunities requires better data gathering and analytical techniques that focus on the nature and extent of actual spectrum usage.

To remedy the spectrum issue, President Obama in June 2013 directed NTIA to design and conduct a pilot program to monitor spectrum usage in real-time in selected communities throughout the country.

NTIA’s budget request for FY 2014 asks for an initial $7.5 million for research and development for a two year pilot program to determine how an automated spectrum measurement and data collection system could improve the ability to analyze spectrum usage more effectively.

The Federal Register for August 19, 2013 includes a Notice of Inquiry (NOI) seeking public comment on the proposed spectrum monitoring pilot program. If the pilot is funded, then the program would develop and deploy a prototype system to monitor spectrum usage in up to ten metropolitan areas throughout the U.S.

The NOI requests input from all interested stakeholders on the measurement system’s design, features, deployment options, operational parameters, expected utility, potential benefits, and other issues.

Comments and suggestions can be submitted up to 45 days from August 19th. Written comments may be submitted by email to measurementNOI@ntia.doc.gov. Written comments may also be mailed to NTIA, Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue, NW, HCHB Room 6725, Washington D.C 20130, Attn: Ed Drocella, Office of Spectrum Management.

Go to www.ntia.doc.gov/federal-register-notice/2013/spectrum-monitoring-pilot-program for the Federal Register notice or go to www.ntia.doc.gov for more information.

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