The Monthly Newsletter of the IEEE Vehicular Technology Society—November 2017

 

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Standards
Spectrum Licensing
Edward Au

As one may know, spectrum is one of society’s most valuable resources. It is also one of the most important topics that standardization development organizations and international trade associations pay close attention to. 

This column gives you a high-level overview on this topic, and asks in particular, what is the difference among unlicensed, license-by-rule, database licensing, and light licensing?

For unlicensed spectrum, users are permitted to operate radio frequency devices without a license in spectrum designated as unlicensed, which is also known as licensed-exempt. Examples include 2.4 GHz, commonly used by Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and other unlicensed technologies. 

In the US, it means that operators must ensure that radio equipment complies with all the necessary technical and operating requirements in Part 15 of the FCC’s rules. Once the manufacturers of Part 15 transmitters comply with the equipment’s approval rules, users are free to operate Part 15 devices without a license.

Licensed spectrum means an exclusive nationwide license is granted to a particular entity to access the spectrum. Spectrum management—including but not limited to frequency assignment, transmit power limitation, and antenna height—is accomplished by different kinds of rules. In the United States, access to the licensed frequency bands is governed by Part 95 of the FCC’s rules.

Database licensing refers to a situation where unlicensed devices operate at certain locations where spectrum is not being used by licensed counterparts. Examples include the TV White Space (i.e., 600 MHz band), and in US, the Citizen Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) (i.e., 3.5 GHz band). 

Access to frequency bands and the operation of these unlicensed devices are managed by a database system that allows operators to determine whether the frequency bands are available for unlicensed use.

For example, certain users of white space devices in the United States are required to register with a TV White Space database. After registration, users are required to check with the database to determine which frequency bands are available for use at their designated physical locations. 

Users are also required to check the database periodically to ensure that the frequency bands they use are still available (i.e., the frequency bands are not required by the licensed counterparts).

Light licensed spectrum is different from licensed spectrum in that a non-exclusive nationwide license is granted to a particular entity to access the spectrum. Examples include 71-76 GHz, 81-86 GHz and 92-95 GHz bands in the United States. 

For these frequency bands, the nationwide license is combined with site-based links obtained through a link registration process, which allows operations to identify available spectrum in these bands and register microwave links for interference protection.

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In This Issue
Message from the EiC
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Society
VTS Distinguished Lecturers and Speakers Program
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Standards
Spectrum Licensing
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From the IEEE VTS Resource Center
Energetic Efficiency of Connected Vehicles • Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Fundamentals
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Motor Vehicles
Electric Vehicles and the Smart Power Grid
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Connected Vehicles
European Cross-Border Experiments on Connected and Automated Driving
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Mobile Radio
5G Technologies
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Transportation Systems
Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) Goes Solar
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Conference Report
IEEE VTC2017-Fall, 2427 September 2017, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
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Call for Papers
IEEE Vehicular Technology Magazine Special Issue on Next Generation Softwarized Wireless Networks
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Editor-in-Chief

Abbas Jamalipour

 
 
 
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Events in 2017:
11–14 December 2017
IEEE VTC2018-Spring in Porto
3–6 June 2018
Bullet For the latest conference listings, visit the IEEE VTS Conference Calendar.

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