U.S.-Canada border spectrum-sharing pact targets millimeter-wave backhaul, other services

Three interim spectrum-sharing arrangements set up by the FCC and Industry Canada are aimed at enabling greater wireless broadband deployment, improving general aviation air-to-ground (ATG) communications services and making more efficient use of spectrum for specialized mobile radio (SMR) services.

The agreements cover the U.S.-Canada border and govern various spectrum bands.

One pact aims to facilitate deployment of border-area fixed services, including backhaul for mobile broadband networks, high-speed wireless local area networks and broadband Internet access over high bandwidth point-to-point links. This new arrangement was crafted by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, in addition to the FCC and Industry Canada. It specifically governs the sharing and coordination of spectrum in the 71-76 GHz, 81-86 GHz, 92-94 GHz and 94.1-95 GHz bands that constitute millimeter-wave spectrum.

Wireless operators have increasingly considered the use of millimeter-wave spectrum for provision of backhaul to LTE macrocells and small cells.

The FCC and Industry Canada also hammered out a Statement of Intent enabling creation of a nationwide digital system for the sharing and coordination of spectrum for general aviation ATG services. The SoI provides for spectrum sharing for ATG and fixed services in the 454.6625-454.9875 MHz and 459.6625-459.9875 MHz bands.

"Arrangement U," a new arrangement for the 896-901 and 935-940 MHz bands used for SMR and the business/industrial radio services primarily for voice communications, governs the sharing and coordination of such services operating within 100 kilometers of the common border. By simplifying the criteria for permitting secondary users in the band, the arrangement aims to enable more efficient use of the spectrum while protecting primary users. This arrangement will be applied on an interim basis pending further review because it could become part of a part of a larger treaty or replacement agreement governing services operating above 30 MHz, said the FCC.

For more:
- see this FCC document

Related articles:
Paolini: Small-cell backhaul market update--what has changed and what has stayed the same
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