SUNNYVALE, Calif. -- The CBRS Alliance, an industry organization focused on driving the development, commercialization, and adoption of OnGo™ shared spectrum solutions, marked another critical step in the path toward commercializing the 3.5 GHz CBRS band. On July 29, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) confirmed coverage plans by CommScope, Federated Wireless, and Google for their respective Environmental Sensing Capability (ESC) networks, confirming adequate coverage of the Dynamic Protection Areas (DPAs) that will be protected by the ESC sensor networks. This is the final step and these ESC systems are now approved for coverage of the named DPAs.
Today, the 3.5 GHz CBRS band is used by the Department of Defense (DoD), primarily for shipborne radar. To ensure that the DoD has continued access to the band, ESC networks are being deployed along the U.S. coast, protecting the incumbent’s use of the spectrum. When an ESC sensor detects a protected radar transmission, it informs a Spectrum Access System (SAS) which activates a protection zone and dynamically reassigns users in the area to other parts of the band, as needed. As commercial services over shared spectrum are poised for rollout, approved ESC operators will ensure that incumbent users of the band are protected while helping to maximize availability of CBRS spectrum across coastal areas.
In October 2018, the FCC established a process for ESC operators to submit their sensor deployment plans. As part of the process, the ESC operators were required to provide sensor installation details demonstrating sufficient DPA coverage. The protected DPAs, which are ocean areas where the DoD operates, create neighborhoods that extend inland from the coastline and may be activated or deactivated as necessary to protect DoD radar systems. CBRS Alliance members CommScope, Federated Wireless and Google will deploy their ESC networks to adequately sense DoD activity in the DPAs in preparation for full commercial service, now estimated to begin in or before September 2019.
“Today we are one step closer to fully realizing the massive potential of commercial OnGo deployments in the CBRS band,” said Alan Ewing, executive director of the CBRS Alliance. “ESC coverage is a key component that will allow for high availability of CBRS spectrum along the country’s coastal regions, where more than 50% of U.S. residents live, while fully protecting important government operations. This process is built on unprecedented collaboration between the FCC, DoD, NTIA, WInnForum, and the more than 135 members of the CBRS Alliance.”
The most recent updates on commercialization status of the CBRS Band can be found here. Industry momentum and traction toward the commercialization of OnGo in the 3.5 GHz band can be found at www.cbrsalliance.org, on LinkedIn and @OnGoWireless on Twitter.