Interference conflicts are ongoing challenges within the radio spectrum field. Within the U.S. spectrum ecosystem, commercial wireless networks for communication, internet access, scientific sensing for both environment and radio astronomy, broadcast, radar, position/navigation/timing, and more create a sometimes crowded atmosphere where signals compete.
“Today, I hope to convince you that the fact that we have spectrum conflicts – as frustrating as some of them can be – is not itself a sign that something is wrong; it’s how we manage them that matters,” said Austin Bonner. Bonner is the Assistant Director for Spectrum and Telecommunications Policy in the White House Office of Science and Technology policy (OSTP), and her keynote speech kicked off Day One of the 2022 Spectrum Policy Initiative Conference.
On October 6 -7, radio spectrum thought leaders gathered for the conference hosted at Silicon Flatirons within the University of Colorado Boulder. Keith Gremban and Dale Hatfield, Silicon Flatirons Spectrum Policy Initiative Co-Directors, and both SpectrumX Research Partners, hosted and led the conference. SpectrumX Center Director Nick Laneman was a moderator and panelist. Other attendees from SpectrumX included Scott Palo, SpectrumX Associate Director; Tanya Ennis, SpectrumX Broadening Participation Director; Martin Weiss, Economics and Policy Research Lead; and Al Gasiewski, SpectrumX Research Partner.
The location of the conference, within the Silicon Flatirons Wolf Law Building, set the stage for in-depth panel discussions from leaders in the field as well as a collection of researchers and policy makers ready to weigh in on topics. The conference’s theme, “Resolving Interference Conflicts among ‘Highest and Best’ Uses of the Radio Spectrum,” set the tone for the critical discussion at the event within the courtroom the conference was held.
Bonner advised that stakeholders in spectrum “should be looking for opportunities to strengthen the technical capacity and laboratory resources needed to enhance spectrum research and development.”
She used SpectrumX as a positive example, referencing a meeting she had with the Center’s founding director Nick Laneman at the White House.
“[SpectrumX’s] cross-institutional collaboration has the power to both spark truly pioneering research and to help translate those findings into policy options,” Bonner said.
The conference had set goals to develop recommendations to resolve interference conflicts through discussion and breakout sessions. By the end of the event, the attendees had summarized five actions that the agencies and representatives who were in attendance could take.
The recommendations included an action plan for SpectrumX to be a part of:
- Perform more, better, and varied measurements of radio propagation, interference scenarios, performance degradations, etc.
- Assess, create, and characterize interference mitigation technologies for expanding coexistence opportunities.
- Develop a framework for harmful interference that includes mission impact and technology impact.
- Embrace risk-informed over worst-case interference analyses, including economic factors such as cost of remediation.
- Pursue disruptive technologies and new incentives for spectrum sharing.
On the second day of the conference, Thomas Rondeau, Principal Director of FutureG/5G, U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), Office of the Under the Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (OUSD R&E), gave the keynote address. Rondeau’s presentation focused on giving an overview of the Department of Defense’s FutureG Initiative. Rondeau emphasized his belief in creating an environment for innovation and new ideas. The DoD is increasingly emphasizing open standards and open sourcing to create an innovation space.
“The annual Spectrum Policy Initiative Conference hosted by Silicon Flatirons is intended to bring together academics, policy makers, and technologists to explore issues and develop recommendations for the increasingly complex challenges that come with utilizing this important resource,” said Gremban. “The strength of Silicon Flatirons is bringing together into one room diverse voices from different sides of an issue.”
Read more about the 2022 Spectrum Policy Initiative Conference: here.
Photos provided by the Silicon Flatirons Center for Law, Policy, and Entrepreneurship, University of Colorado Law School.
SpectrumX is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) as part of its Spectrum Innovation Initiative, under grant number AST 21-32700. SpectrumX is the world’s largest academic hub where all radio spectrum stakeholders can innovate, collaborate, and contribute to maximizing social welfare of this precious resource.
To learn more about SpectrumX, please visit spectrumx.org.
Christina Clark, Research Communications Specialist
SpectrumX / Notre Dame Research / University of Notre Dame
email@example.com / 574.631.2665