Quick Links 3/13/09 [Update]

Posted in 802.19, coexistence, conferences, military, public safety, SDRF, shameless self-promotion, white space at 11:10 am by JamesNeel

ECWS Presentations from 802 Plenary

While I wasn’t there icon_sad, the March 802 Plenary had a major presentation from the ECWS (in fact it was the primary deliverable for the group.) Based on email traffic I’ve read, it looks unclear at this point in what form this will be continuing on as. [Update 3/16/09 – ECWS disbanded, coexistence work continues in 802.19 as a study group with the outputs of two documents “one on coexistence scenarios and one on coexistence mechanisms, with a plan for when the deliverables will be completed, with interim steps” (802.19 note from here and ECWS disbanding coming via email)]

Nonetheless, if you want to get up to speed on their activities, these two links will do a good job.

(pdf) Tutorial. Quite a large file (~ 7.25 MB), but lots of good information.

(ppt) ECWS Chair’s Report. (Just main takeaways from tutorial and much smaller)

(pdf) Spectrum Sharing in TV White Space Workshop.

As part of its June meeting in Detroit (June 15-18), the SDR Forum will host a workshop on coexistence of TV white space devices on June 16. They’re currently soliciting proposals for presentations through April 1.

(no link) Cognitive Radio and Intelligent Transportation Systems at SDRF ITS Workshop

Intelligent Transportation Systems effectively apply the concept of a cognitive system to the management of transportation systems (gather information, recognize patterns, apply rules / reason, learn from past actions). Wireless links play a big role in transferring information and control messages and cognitive radio can help improve the communications quality and availability in this highly dynamic environment. Once cognitive radio is integrated into and fielded with ITS, we’ll have “cognitive systems of cognitive systems”, which is one of the broader trends I see for the future.

As of this week, I’ll be giving a 30-minute talk with Ashwin Amana on cognitive radio and intelligent transportation systems at the SDR Forum ITS Workshop, also at the SDR Forum Detroit meeting (so many great workshops crammed into such a short meeting).

(link) IWCE Panel to Discuss Cognitive Radio

Really, it’s a panel to highlight NIJ’s communications related research efforts. But one of the major thrusts has been cognitive radio. Charles Bostian of VT will be discussing their NIJ-funded efforts to create the Public Safety Cognitive Radio (PSCR) node. IWCE is March 16-20 (Vegas), and the panel is on March 18th, from 1:30-2:45 PM.

(link) EMC Electronica article on embedded SDR and CR.

Not the most illuminating article, but it does note the natural relationship between SDR and CR (though very DSA focused) and the role of embedded processing in realizing CR. Really, this is just an excuse to note that CRT is currently executing a SBIR to realize embedded cognitive spectrum management on JTRS radios (JTRS defines a DoD standard for SDR platforms). (pdf of a flyer we pass out on the topic)

(link) New CR Blog

I don’t know who he is, but James (not me) is posting his notes on his “4th year project on cognitive radio” as it progresses. At least so far, he’s doing a good job of capturing and linking to important papers.


Quick Links 9/17/08

Posted in overview, public safety, quick links, white space at 6:32 am by JamesNeel

(link) iTNews (Aussie mag) interviewed Dr Bostian of VT about cognitive radio. Microsoft is also mentioned.

(link) SlashDot also notes the article, where as always, the comments are the most interesting part (particularly if you want a public perspective), e.g.,

“Cognitive radios!?? Oh no you don’t! (Starts adding layers to tin foil hat.)”

(link) The National Cable & Telecommunications Association issued a letter on white space noting potential interference at head ends. They are not arguing against unlicensed white space devices, but would like the following provisions:

  1. Restrict the operation of portable devices to a maximum of 10 mW and prohibit transmissions in the VHF channels given the high probability of direct pickup interference to TV receivers.
  2. Prohibit operations, at a minimum, on channels 2- 4.
  3. Restrict the operation of fixed devices to at least 400 feet from the external walls of residential buildings.
  4. Prohibit operation of fixed devices in VHF channels.
  5. Require spectrum coordination before operation of portable devices on channels adjacent to those being received at headends.

They add:

Of the suggested methods by which fixed and portable devices might automatically determine channel availability, it appears that auto-location (GPS or equivalent), combined with regular access to a reliable database containing geographically-indexed lists of available channels, has the potential to provide the flexibility and reliability required to protect headend reception.


Block D Auction Update

Posted in public safety, spectrum at 7:52 am by JamesNeel

According to the WaPo, new rules for Block D have been issued:

Under the new proposal, the network would be auctioned as one national block of radio spectrum or, alternatively, as 58 separate regional airwaves licenses. The agency said that it prefers to sell the spectrum as a whole and that it would give priority to such a bid. But if no one meets the minimum reserve price for the national block, the commission would close the auction with a minimum of half of the 58 regional licenses sold.

To attract bidders in a new auction, Martin said yesterday that the minimum price to bid on the network would drop by nearly half, to $750 million. The deadline to build the network would extend to 15 years from 10 years, and any lease charges from public safety officials would be capped at $5 million a year.


MRT Article on Frequency Agile Cognitive Radio

Posted in public safety at 8:25 am by JamesNeel

Primarily, the article summarizes contract awards in the development of SDR and cognitive radio.


1) There’s a claim in the article that cognitive radio will be cheaper than a normal radio. While I expect that to eventually be true, I don’t see it happening in the first few generations of cognitive radio. Basically, there’s going to need to be changes in the way radios are designed, the way systems are specified, and the way spectrum policy is specified. And all of that is not going to happen at once.

2) Also on the subject of price, the $500/radio DARPA quote is just for the brick (hardware). Software development will significantly add to the price tag. As radios transition to SDR, the majority of the cost will increasingly come from the software. This is to be expected as the goal of SDR is to realize as much functionality in software as possible.

3) The article mentions the value that IT saw from open standards in terms of decreasing prices. Drawing an analogy with IT, I also expect the value from SDR and CR to be minimal, if not more expensive, when just replacing existing solutions. Real value will come from new applications and as processes are adapted to leverage SDR and CR.

4) Bitwave has made big claims for their RFICs which I’ve cited in presentations. However, I’ve heard of delivery and performance issues. Anyone have any first-hand information?