SP 3-30 GHz — Revisions to Spectrum Utilization Policies in the 3-30 GHz Frequency Range and Further Consultation

October 2004

Table of Contents


1.0 Introduction

The purpose of this paper announced in Gazette Notice, DGTP-008-04, is to make revisions to spectrum utilization policies in certain bands in the 3-30 GHz frequency range. Also, a number of new spectrum issues are being raised in this document for public comment.

In January 2002, the Department released a public consultation paper, entitled Consultation on Revisions to the Spectrum Utilization Policies 3-30 GHz Frequency Range (DGTP-001-02). The proposals made in that document were in response to a number of expressions of interest for the introduction of new services and applications in the spectrum above 3 GHz.

The previous consultation applicable to such a broad range of spectrum, services and applications was conducted in August 1997, with the release of a paper entitled Proposals to Provide New Opportunities for the Use of the Radio Spectrum in the 1-20 GHz Frequency Range (DGTP-006-97). Since that time, spectrum utilization in the 1-3 GHz range has been addressed in two documents. Comments received in response to DGTP-006-97 were taken into consideration in the development of a spectrum policy entitled Amendments to the Microwave Spectrum Utilization Policies in the 1-3 GHz Frequency Range which was announced in Notice DGTP-006-99 in October 1999. This utilization policy made accommodation for additional services and new radio applications, and included a transition policy to facilitate the introduction of mobile-satellite services at 2 GHz. A further consultation paper (DGTP-003-00) was used to develop a spectrum policy entitled Revisions to the Spectrum Utilization Policy for Services in the Frequency Range 2285–2483.5 MHz (DGTP-003-01). Spectrum was designated for Wireless Communications Services (WCS) and provisions were made to facilitate the introduction of licence-exempt microwave devices in this utilization policy.

There has been interest expressed for the introduction of new services and applications in bands above 3 GHz. In August 1998, Industry Canada announced a spectrum policy, entitled Spectrum Policy and Licensing Provisions for Fixed Wireless Access Systems in Rural Areas in the Frequency Range 3400–3700 MHz (DGTP-013-98) which represented the first set of amendments to the 1-20 GHz policies in the spectrum above 3 GHz.

In December 1998, Radio Systems Policy 008, Policy Framework for the Provision of Fixed-satellite Services (RP-008) liberalized many aspects of the provision of fixed-satellite service (FSS) communications in Canada. As a consequence of this liberalization and of other related commitments made in the policy framework, Industry Canada has modified the existing authorization procedures for fixed-satellite earth stations and approval of foreign fixed-satellite services. The Department has already approved a number of foreign fixed-satellites for use in Canada with some provisions on frequency bands.

A number of changes are occurring in this spectrum range. For example, the requirement for exclusive bands to support heavy route microwave systems in the 4 and 6 GHz range has greatly diminished with the availability of other transport options such as fibre systems. In the 11 and 14 GHz ranges there is considerable interest in the provision of new broadband access services via geostationary satellites. Similarly, at 18 and 28 GHz, there are plans for multimedia satellite systems to be in operation in the next one-three years. In addition to these requirements, there is a demand for spectrum for new terrestrial wireless access services including licence-exempt products and applications.

As a result of these and other developments, a review of various aspects of the bands between 3 and 30 GHz was warranted. Thirty-seven independent submissions were made in response to the consultation, expressing a range of opinions on each of the proposals made in the document. These comments have been taken into account.

The spectrum utilization policy decisions that address the use of certain bands in the 3-30 GHz frequency range are detailed in this document. Provisions are made which are intended to maximize the economical use of the spectrum while minimizing the impact of one use on another, in accordance with the revised Spectrum Policy Framework.

2.0 Issues Regarding the Use of Fixed-Satellite Services

In the majority of proposals made in the consultation for the bands shared between the fixed service (FS) and the fixed-satellite service, the concept of "soft partitioning" was to be applied in situations where it was desirable to place emphasis on the use of the spectrum by one service over another. In this fashion, access to the spectrum would not be denied, but would be limited to implementations that would not constrain the development of the service for which priority would be given. This was intended to facilitate the implementation of applications or services where the deployment of terminals would occur in a ubiquitous manner, with minimal burden of coordination and the possibility of authorization on a spectrum and geographic area basis. In the comments, there was considerable support for soft partitioning of the spectrum including the element of designating priority to fixed service or fixed-satellite service as appropriate, with limitations not to constrain the development of the service granted priority in the band.

As discussed in the consultation document, Canadian domestic footnote C16AFootnote 1 was intended to apply to bands shared between fixed and fixed-satellite services where no domestic spectrum utilization policies to govern the use of either one or both of the services had been developed. In considering the 3-30 GHz range in the consultation document the process to develop such spectrum utilization policies was initiated. It follows that in the subsequent spectrum policies developed as a result of the consultation it will be necessary to modify the application, nature and content of C16A (as well as other footnotes) to be applied to the various bands in order to clearly enunciate the intended policy provisions.

With respect to texts for footnote C16A, there was objection to the use of 'limited to large antenna earth stations located in areas outside of urban centres' to describe the limitations to be placed on the implementation of FSS earth terminals. Several different proposals were made for replacement text. These will be considered in the discussions of individual band decisions.

Action: Appropriate revisions to footnote C16A will be developed in this paper to reflect the spectrum utilization policy decisions in each of the relevant C, Ku and Ka band sections.

3.0 Decisions on Spectrum Utilization Policies for C Band

The bands between 3700 and 7025 MHz are generally referred to as the C bands; the bands 3700–4200 MHz and 5925–6425 MHz are the conventional C bands; and 4500–4800 MHz and 6725–7025 MHz are the allotment C bands.

3.1 Conventional Paired Bands 3700–4200 MHz and 5925–6425 MHz

3.1.1 Background

The fixed service and fixed-satellite service (space-to-Earth) share the band 3700–4200 MHz on a co-primary basis. The fixed service and fixed-satellite service (Earth-to-space) share the band 5925–6425 MHz on a co-primary basis. Coordination is carried out on a first-come, first-served basis.

Over the past 30 years, the orbital arc from 70°-140°W longitude has been populated by conventional C band satellites to serve markets in the Americas. Canada opened its fixed-satellite services market for international telecommunications in December 1998. Full competition in the services for domestic (Canada-Canada) and Canada- U.S. markets was opened in March 2000. The liberalization of communications satellite services is an important component of the World Trade Organization (WTO) agreement in advancing competition in provision of telecommunications services. With the 1998 changes made to the Telecommunications Act, earth stations operated as telecommunications carrier transmission facilities are exempt from the Canadian ownership and control requirements. Also, under the satellite policy, receive-only earth stations can be licence exempt. Since the opening of the Canadian satellite service market, the Department has included more than 50 foreign satellites on its list of approved FSS satellites.

As discussed in the consultation document, the bands 3700–4200 MHz (Lower 4 GHz ) and 5915–6425 MHz (Lower 6 GHz) were used extensively in the past by the fixed service for high-capacity, point-to-point microwave systems, which formed part of the backbone of the Canadian telecommunications network, handling intercity voice, data and video traffic. The Department had ensured over the years that this spectrum was available for heavy-route long-haul microwave systems by specifying minimum RF channel growth requirements for systems wanting access to the bands. During the last decade, telecommunications companies have developed extensive intercity fibre optic facilities which carry most of the traffic once found on the heavy-route long haul microwave systems. Fibre transmission capacity has surpassed microwave capacity by several orders of magnitude, to the point where microwave systems at 4 and 6 GHz are used for certain inter-provincial cross sections and in cases where difficult terrain or access problems prohibit fibre, or as emergency backup systems. With the introduction of competition, it was anticipated that new entrants would be interested in developing new heavy route microwave network backbones. However, this has not occurred. As a result, a number of microwave systems in these bands have been decommissioned and there has been little growth in either new systems or expansion of existing systems. The requirement for exclusive bands to support heavy route microwave cross sections has greatly diminished.

In the responses to the consultation, views on the number of existing fixed service systems varied. However, as indicated by the incumbent users, there are still significant microwave cross sections in certain areas which are not planned for decommissioning in the foreseeable future. A general comment is that the use of the conventional 4 and 6 GHz bands under the current spectrum utilization policy is diminishing. New heavy route microwave systems are not being implemented, and new systems are constrained by the existing minimum RF channel growth requirement.

The intent of the 2002 consultation on these bands was to consider current use and to explore options to increase the use in the spectrum. For fixed services, removing the growth requirement would permit the introduction of systems which require high-capacity but which would not likely grow to the full heavy route RF channel capacity specified in the current utilization policy. This could become increasingly important for example in the development of microwave backhaul systems supporting Personal Communications Service (PCS) and Advanced Wireless Service (AWS) mobile networks which are forecast to require high-capacity (HC) even on preliminary systems and routes. The proposal for the introduction of low-cpacity (LC) and medium-capacity (MC) across the 4 and 6 GHz bands was also intended to increase flexibility of use and to meet spectrum requirements for low-cpacity systems, since the spectrum for LC below 3 GHz has gradually been replaced by new mobile services and spectrum for LC below 10 GHz is limited. Another aspect is the flexibility of current microwave radio equipment to provide scalable transmission capacities. It has become increasingly easy within new microwave equipment to expand system capacity as networks grow, upgrading from low to medium to high-capacity traffic in an orderly progression. There are obvious advantages in terms of infrastructure to being able to grow within the same spectrum range.

On the other hand, for satellite services in the band, a proposal was received from Telesat Canada to transition the 4 and 6 GHz bands from co-primary fixed service and fixed-satellite service to an exclusive allocation to the satellite service. It was indicated that the exclusive operation by FSS in the C band would improve the economics of satellite services. The request emphasizes the requirement to connect rural and remote communities with medium to high-capacity transport links for Internet service where such access cannot be provided by terrestrial means. This proposal was supported by users and service providers with satellite interests in the band, and opposed by entities with fixed service interests in the band.

There are currently about 30 or so satellites using the conventional C band to serve the North American market. The new family of satellites being planned to populate some of the available orbital positions are expected to have a life span of 15 years or more. While the number of earth stations may increase as a result of satellite-service growth, the Department is not aware of any move toward higher-power satellites or the use of spot beams at C band which would facilitate the entry of earth stations using antennas of less than 1 meter. As well, the combination of low frequency band and 2° satellite orbit spacing (in the U.S. and other markets) is likely to keep earth station antenna sizes relatively large in comparison with services in higher frequency bands (Ku and future Ka bands) targeted to serve business and consumers directly with broadband access and VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal) networks. Input to the consultation indicated that interference requirements and orbit spacing of 2 degrees on the arc dictate a minimum antenna diameter of 2.4 meters.

Commenters also indicated that an exclusive allocation for the FSS in the bands would facilitate the introduction of services such as transportable satellite news gathering (SNG) systems for which coordination on an area basis with terrestrial services would be problematic. The Department sought comments on allowing for increased exclusivity for both FS and FSS services, by placing emphasis on fixed and fixed-satellite services in either mutually exclusive geographic areas or for mutually exclusive portions of the frequency band. This proposal was however rejected by both FS and FSS proponents. In the comments, there was not sufficient justification or additional requirements presented that would warrant further consideration of an exclusive allocation of the conventional C band to the FSS service. Also, such a direction would be contrary to the Department's position that spectrum resources should be made available for allocations to several radio services, to maximize spectrum utilization.


3.1.2 Lower 4 GHz (3700–4200 MHz)

Under current spectrum utilization policies, the band 3700–4200 MHz is shared between co-primary fixed and fixed-satellite service (medium-capacity space-to Earth) systems on a coordinated first-come, first-served basis. Protection is afforded to systems which have been licensed by the Department after coordination with existing licensed systems. Provision is made for receive-only earth stations to be operated on a licence-exempt basis, but without protection from licensed systems. In their submission to the consultation, Cancom reported an estimated 2600 receiving earth stations located at cable head-ends across the country. An examination of the Department's licensing database however indicates that only a small percentage of these systems are licensed. Cancom argues that an exclusive allocation to FSS in this band would ensure that receive-only earth stations would not be subjected to interference from terrestrial systems.

Noting the trend for direct-to-consumer broadcast services occurring in the Ku band and plans for future services in the Ka band, and the arguments on terminal sizes above, the question is then how much growth can be expected for these services other than to small and/or remote communities. The Department is of the view that for this type of growth, coordination with fixed systems remains feasible.

It is worth noting that the U.S. use of the band indicates a natural evolution to satellite services by virtue of the difficulty in coordinating terrestrial systems into an area where a receiving earth terminal has been licensed, particularly in urban areas. This is due to the low level of available margin which makes the satellite receivers susceptible to even low levels of interference. The band remains open to both public and private operational terrestrial microwave systems, channelized at 20 MHz bandwidth.

As previously discussed, the purpose of the consultation for this band was to explore options to increase the flexibility of use by both major co-primary services in these bands. The conclusion that can be drawn from the comments received is that a radical change of use by either service is neither immediately required nor warranted at this time. The Department will therefore neither move toward designating the band for exclusive FSS nor add low and medium-capacity for fixed services at this time.

In order to increase flexibility of use and to more closely align with use in the U.S., the Department will remove the minimum RF channel growth requirement for the band for high-capacity point-to-point fixed service systems. Equitable access to the band by both FS and FSS services will remain on a coordinated first-come, first-served basis.


Decision: 

The Department is maintaining the designation of the band 3700–4200 MHz for fixed and fixed-satellite services.

The Department is maintaining the designation of the band 3700–4200 MHz for high-capacity point-to-point fixed service systems but is removing the minimum RF channel growth requirement.


3.1.3 Lower 6 GHz (5925–6425 MHz)

Under current spectrum utilization policies, the band is shared between co-primary fixed and fixed-satellite service (Earth-to-space) systems on a coordinated first-come, first-served basis. Protection is afforded to systems which have been licensed by the Department after coordination with existing licensed systems.

Satellite uplink terminals are not significantly affected by terrestrial microwave transmitters, and orbital avoidance constraints have been placed on the FS in order to protect FSS satellite receivers in the geostationary satellite orbit (GSO). Since terrestrial microwave receivers typically have good available margin, sharing is quite manageable.

As with the lower 4 GHz band, the removal of the RF channel growth requirement for fixed service systems in this band will improve the flexibility for new microwave systems. The addition of low and medium-capacity to this band was supported by terrestrial service interests to accommodate microwave applications which have traditionally had access to bands below 3 GHz, and which are increasingly being designated to support mobile services and wireless access applications.

Recognizing that the spectrum is paired with the lower 4 GHz band for satellite use, the same arguments apply. There is no evidence of a move toward satellite characteristics nor orbit spacing that would be required to facilitate the implementation of more ubiquitous applications similar to those currently in progress in the Ku and Ka bands.

The Department will therefore retain its intention to increase the flexibility of use of this spectrum and remove the minimum growth requirement for high-capacity fixed service systems in the band. In addition, medium-capacity systems will be permitted throughout the band. With respect to low-capacity, comments from the RABC indicated that a designation for 40+40 MHz would suffice. Comments however also highlighted the desirability of aligning spectrum use with that in the U.S. to achieve economies of scale. There will also be a requirement to accommodate low-cpacity systems, which will be encouraged to use spectrum other than the band 5850–5925 MHz, which will be designated for ITS applications (see Section 3.3). Noting that the accommodation of low-cpacity systems in the lower 4 GHz band has been put on hold for a future review of spectrum use, and again emphasizing the scarcity of low-cpacity spectrum in bands below 10 GHz, the Department will therefore allow for up to 150 MHz in total in the band 5925–6425 MHz to be designated for low-cpacity systems.

The current designation for the band starts at 5915 MHz. With the designation for ITS applications in the band 5850–5925 MHz (see Section 3.3), the lower limit of the band will therefore start at 5925 MHz and channel plans will need to be adjusted. There are approximately 75 frequency assignments which fall into the overlap spectrum. These systems will be grandfathered with respect to any new channel plans for the 6 GHz band, and will be treated in a future spectrum and licensing policy with respect to the ITS services.


Decision: 

The Department is maintaining the designation of the band 5925–6425 MHz for fixed and fixed-satellite services.

The Department is removing the minimum RF channel growth requirement for high-capacity point-to-point fixed service systems in the band 5925–6425 MHz and is adding a designation for up to 150 MHz of spectrum for low-cpacity systems.

In addition, medium-capacity systems will be permitted throughout the band.


3.2 Allotment Paired Bands 4500–4800 MHz and 6725–7075 MHz for FSS

3.2.1 Background

The fixed service and fixed-satellite service (space-to-Earth) share the band 4500–4800 MHz on a primary basis. Fixed service use in the bands 4545–4705 MHz and 4735–4895 MHz is limited to high-capacity systems. The bands 4460–4540 MHz and 4900–4990 MHz are restricted to use by the Government of Canada (GoC). The fixed service and fixed-satellite service (Earth-to-space) share the band 6425–7075 MHz on a primary basis. Fixed service use in the band 6425–6930 MHz includes medium and high-capacity systems and studio transmitter links (STL).

Canada has three orbital positions (107.3°W, 111.1°W and 114.9°W longitude) available from which the allotment C bands can be used. Domestic footnote C16A presently limits the use of spectrum for fixed-satellite services in the bands 4500–4800 MHz and 6725–7075 MHz to systems employing large antenna earth stations located in areas outside of urban centres.

The consultation sought input on whether to provide full flexibility for the deployment of fixed-satellite service earth stations in the allotment C bands in Canada on a coordinated first-come, first-served basis with the fixed service in order to stimulate the development of the available Canadian orbital positions and advance competition in satellite offerings, or to retain the application of domestic footnote C16A for FSS in the bands.

Perhaps predictably, comments were polarized. FSS proponents supported the implementation of satellite services anywhere and with any size of antenna under first-come, first-served rules; while FS comments supported the retention of the application of domestic footnote C16A for the bands. The addition of a mobile service allocation to the band 4500–4800 MHz and the designation of exclusive GoC use were opposed by the FSS community.

In deciding on the modifications to spectrum utilization policies for these bands, the Department noted the limited number of orbital positions available which are capable of serving the North American market and the difficulties anticipated in implementing satellites with a North American service area in accordance with the ITU plan in Appendix 30B of the Radio Regulations. The Department also noted the availability of other valuable spectrum at these positions and the recent development of new satellites at these positions using other spectrum. As well, the results of the Call for Proposals to License Expeditiously a Ka band Space Station at the 107.3° West Longitude Orbital Position, in September 2001, which offered the use of allotment bands for consideration illustrates there was no interest in the allotment bands, even in conjunction with valuable Ka band spectrum. For these reasons, it is not expected that satellites will be deployed to these three positions using this spectrum in the foreseeable future.

The Department noted in the consultation document that in the U.S., the band 4400–4940 MHz is allocated to the Federal Government for fixed and mobile services (MS). U.S. footnote U.S.245 limits FSS use of the band 4500–4800 MHz to international intercontinental systems (meaning a few large antennas). FS uses include point-to-point, troposcatter and tactical radio relay. MS uses are video and data telemetry, remote piloted vehicles (RPV) and fleet defence. The U.S. navy operates its Cooperative Engagement Capability (CEC) system in the band. In Europe, the band 4400–4990 MHz is a harmonized military band for fixed and mobile services, and FSS in the band 4500–4800 MHz is not allowed in European NATO countries.

In Canada, the bands 4460–4540 MHz and 4900–4990 MHz fixed and mobile services are restricted to use by the Government of Canada. The fixed service use in the bands 4545–4705 MHz and 4735–4895 MHz is limited to high-capacity systems and subject to traffic growth requirements.

The Department solicited comment with respect to terrestrial uses of the band 4500–4800 MHz — whether to designate additional low-cpacity and medium-capacity spectrum for the fixed service and to remove the traffic growth requirements in the band in order to facilitate new fixed-service applications; or whether to add a mobile service allocation to the band 4500–4800 MHz with fixed and mobile services restricted to use by the Government of Canada. An additional proposal was also made to realign the designation of the spectrum restricted to use by the Government of Canada to include the bands 4400–4460 MHz and 4800–4900 MHz. Comments on behalf of the FS interests indicated that there was no objection to the proposals that would favour GoC uses in the band other than to ensure the continued protection of existing high-capacity fixed systems.

On further examination of the potential for use of the allotment C bands by the FSS, and continued use by the fixed service, and weighing those uses against the potential benefit for GoC applications to have access to spectrum which is harmonized with NATO uses, the Department has decided to designate priority to the use of the band for fixed and mobile services by the Government of Canada. A mobile allocation will be added and fixed and mobile service applications will be limited to use by the GoC in the band 4400–4940 MHz. A moratorium is placed on the licensing of new fixed service systems. Existing fixed service systems are grandfathered, with modifications allowed on a case-by-case basis. GoC systems will coordinate their use with these existing systems.

With respect to the use of FSS in the band 4500–4800 MHz, priority will be given to use of the fixed and mobile services by the Department of National Defence in the vicinity of major military bases. The Department will retain the application of a modified version of domestic footnote C16A for FSS use of the band 4500–4800 MHz. Use of the fixed-satellite service in this band shall be limited to applications that pose minimal constraints on the deployment of fixed and mobile service systems in the vicinity of major military bases. Use outside these areas will be on a first-come, first-served coordinated basis with GoC fixed and mobile service systems.


Decision:

The Department will retain the application of a modified version of domestic footnote C16A for FSS use of the band 4500–4800 MHz.

A primary mobile allocation is added in the band 4400–4990 MHz, consistent with international footnote 5.442.

Fixed and mobile service applications are limited to use by the Government of Canada in the band 4400–4940 MHz in a modified footnote C25. 

A moratorium is placed on the licensing of new non-Government of Canada fixed service systems in the band 4400–4940 MHz. Existing systems are grandfathered, with modifications allowed on a case-by-case basis.

Government of Canada systems will be co-ordinated with existing fixed service systems.

Details of the changes to the Canadian Table of Frequency Allocations can be found in the Allocation section of this document.


3.2.2 Additional Rearrangement of the band 4940–4990 MHz for services in support of Public Safety

In the U.S., the band 4940–4990 MHz was assigned as non-Federal Government exclusive use in 1999 and was proposed for wireless communication services. The band has since been designated for use in support of public safety. The intent is to facilitate emerging technologies which will support applications such as: wireless links from cameras, thermal imagers and 3D locators, wireless video and data transfer to portable command centers and large data file exchanges at specified locations. These are normally known as broadband public safety applications. The FCC has recently concluded the consideration of eligibility, licensing, service and technical rules.

While no specific change was proposed for the addition of Wireless Communications Services to the band 4940–4990 MHz, there was sufficient recognition given in the comments to the developments in the U.S. that the Department is confident in making a similar designation at this time. The Department is therefore adding a primary allocation to the mobile service, except aeronautical mobile service, consistent with the International Table of Frequency Allocations footnote 5.442. The band 4940–4990 MHz is designated for fixed and mobile service use in support of public safety. The precise definition for use and eligibility for use will be developed in a spectrum and licensing policy for the newly designated applications in the near future. Any compatibility issues and necessary transition arrangements between existing GoC systems operating in the band and the newly designated applications will also be a subject for consideration in the development of a future spectrum policy. In the interim, new GoC systems are encouraged to take all practicable steps to use the band 4400–4940 MHz designated for their use in this policy, taking into account the existing licensed systems in the band.


Decision: 

The Department is adding a primary allocation to the mobile service in the band 4940–4990 MHz, consistent with the International Table of Frequency Allocations footnote 5.442. The band 4940–4990 MHz is designated for fixed and mobile service use in support of public safety. The precise definition for use and eligibility for use will be developed in a spectrum and licensing policy for the newly designated applications in the near future. Any compatibility issues and necessary transition arrangements between existing GoC systems operating in the band and the newly designated applications will also be a subject for consideration in the development of the policy.

New GoC systems are encouraged to take all practicable steps to use the band 4400–4940 MHz taking into account the existing licensed systems in the band.

Details of the changes to the Canadian Table of Frequency Allocations can be found in the Allocation section of this document.

3.2.3 6425–7025 MHz

For the allotment C band 6725–7025 MHz, fixed service users supported the retention of the application of domestic footnote C16A to the band. However, similar arguments apply to sharing between receiving FS and transmitting FSS earth terminals as discussed for the conventional uplink C band. That is, satellite uplink terminals are not significantly affected by terrestrial transmitters, and orbit avoidance constraints apply to protect FSS satellite receivers at the GSO. Since terrestrial receivers typically have more available margin than satellite receivers, sharing is deemed to be more manageable than is the case in the satellite downlink bands. The Department is of the view that a requirement for earth stations to be individually coordinated and authorized (i.e. limited to non-ubiquitous deployments) will be sufficient to balance requirements and ensure compatibility on a first-come, first-served basis. The Department will therefore not retain the application of the current version of C16A to the band 6725–7025 MHz. Fixed service and fixed-satellite service stations will be coordinated on a first-come, first-served basis as is the current accepted practice in the conventional C band.

The consultation did not discuss the Earth-to space allocation to the fixed-satellite service in the band 6700–7075 MHz which is limited to feeder links for non-geostationary satellite orbit (NGSO) systems of the mobile-satellite service. However, the recent notice of proposed rulemaking released in the U.S. (FCC 03-318) on coordination of these systems with broadcast auxiliary systems is noted at this time.

The Department solicited comments on whether to designate additional low-capacity spectrum for the fixed service in all or part of the band 6425–6930 MHz. There was some opposition to the addition of low-capacity to the band based on the interests of medium and high-capacity terrestrial uses. With the removal of the growth requirement for high-capacity systems in the 5925–6425 MHz band and the addition of low and medium capacities (see Section 3.1.3) these concerns should be alleviated.

In the U.S., this band is available for use by public safety, utilities, railroads and system control and data acquisition (SCADA) low-capacity applications, and was made available in 1993 for common carrier use. The band has been designated as a migration band for private systems being moved out of the 1.9 GHz band. A number of inputs subsequent to the consultation have highlighted the value of spectrum aligned with uses in the U.S.. For example hydro companies wishing to install traffic routes extending into the U.S. would benefit from a designation for low-capacity in the band 6525–6875 MHz.

The Department is therefore adding a designation to the 6525–6875 MHz portion of the band 6425–6930 MHz for low-capacity applications. The recent notice of proposed rulemaking released in the U.S. (FCC 03-289) proposing expanded, unlicensed operation enabled by an interference temperature approach in the band 6525–6700 MHz is noted at this time.


Decision: 

The Department will not retain the application of the current version of C16A to the band 6725–7025 MHz. Fixed service and fixed-satellite service stations will be coordinated on a first-come, first-served basis as is the current accepted practice in the conventional C band.

The Department is adding a designation to the band 6525–6875 MHz for low-capacity fixed service applications.

Details of the changes to the Canadian Table can be found in the Allocation section of this document.


3.3 Intelligent Transportation Systems in the Band 5850–5925 MHz

Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) consist of a series of diverse technologies for communication, information processing and control which are intended to improve the safety and efficiency of transportation infrastructures. In general, ITS services are also expected to decrease vehicle traffic congestion, facilitate the reduction of air pollution and help conserve fossil fuels. Initiatives for the development of ITS architectures are in progress in the U.S., Europe and Japan.

There are a number of service components for ITS including Dedicated Short Range Communications (DSRC) systems intended to provide short range wireless links to transfer information between vehicles and roadside systems. Examples of such information transfer include: traffic light control, traffic monitoring, travellers' alerts, automatic toll collection, traffic congestion detection, emergency vehicle signal pre-emption of traffic lights and electronic inspection of moving trucks through data transmissions with roadside inspection facilities.

In Canada, the band 5850–5925 MHz is allocated on a primary basis to the fixed service, fixed-satellite service (Earth-to-space) and on a secondary basis to amateur and radiolocation services. The band 5725–5875 MHz is also allocated for industrial, scientific and medical (ISM) applications and licence-exempt devices. The band 5850–5915 MHz (LL6) is designated for use by low and medium-capacity fixed systems while the band 5915–6425 MHz (L6) is allocated to high-capacity fixed systems. Presently, there are approximately 550 fixed system frequency assignments in the band 5850–5915 MHz. These systems are predominantly used for LC/MC overlay on the heavy route L6 systems for major cellular route expansion. Another 75 frequency assignments made in accordance with the channel plan for the L6 band 5915–6425 MHz overlap the 5915–5925 MHz portion of the proposed band for ITS.

In the U.S., the band 5850–5925 MHz is currently allocated on a co-primary basis for the Government's radiolocation service (i.e. for use by high-powered military radar systems) and for non-Government FSS uplink operations. ISM devices and unlicensed Part 15 devices are also permitted to operate in the 5725–5875 MHz segment. In October 1999, the FCC allocated 75 MHz of spectrum in the band 5850–5925 MHz specifically for DSRC-based ITS systems but deferred consideration of licensing and service rules. There is now an NPRM seeking comment on definition of services and eligibility for use of the band, licensing and technical matters as well as a band plan submitted to the commission by ITS America.

Recognizing the importance of safety and efficiency to Canada's transportation infrastructure, the Department proposed designating 75 MHz of spectrum for ITS systems in the band 5850–5925 MHz. Comments were requested on the requirement to add a mobile allocation to the band to accommodate ITS applications, options to improve co-existence and the requirement if any for a moratorium on the licensing of new fixed systems. There was general support expressed in the comments for the addition of an allocation for the mobile service in the band 5850–5925 MHz as well as for the designation of the band for DSRC systems in ITS applications.

The Department is therefore adding a mobile allocation to the band 5850–5925 MHz.

The Department is designating the band 5850–5925 MHz for use by DSRC systems intended to provide wireless links to transfer information between vehicles and roadside systems. Such ITS applications should be in general accordance with the Canadian ITS Steering Committee Report on the Architecture Framework for ITS released in June 2000. A precise definition of use and eligibility for use will be developed in a future policy and licensing framework for the band. While work is already underway to identify a harmonized standard for ITS systems with the U.S. and Mexico, further consideration could be given to interoperability, performance requirements and eventual coordination with U.S. systems.

It is anticipated that the entire band will eventually be required for ITS applications, but the rate at which that happens and the time frame in which incumbent services are impacted is yet to be determined. There was very little support in the comments submitted for a moratorium on the licensing of point-to-point fixed systems at this time, given the status of development of ITS applications. The Department will reconsider the requirement for a moratorium on the licensing of new fixed service systems in the development of the policy framework described above. In the meantime however, applicants for fixed systems in this band will be encouraged, to the extent practicable, to use spectrum in the adjacent band 5925–6425 MHz (see Section 3.1.3).


Decision: 

The Department is adding a mobile allocation to the band 5850–5925 MHz. This band is designated for use by Dedicated Short Range Communication systems to support Intelligent Transportation System applications in the fixed and mobile services. New point-to-point fixed systems wanting to use the band in accordance with the existing guideline will be encouraged, to the extent practicable, to use spectrum in the adjacent band 5925–6425 MHz.

Details of the changes to the Canadian Table of Frequency Allocations can be found in the Allocation section of this document.

Future Consultation: 

The Department will be consulting to determine the precise definition of use and eligibility for use of ITS applications in the future, including any necessary provisions for transition.

3.4 Further Consultation

The band 5850-5925 MHz is allocated to the FSS (Earth-space) on a co-primary basis. The Department notes the U.S. allocation to FSS is limited under footnote U.S.245 to international intercontinental systems, which in effect means that the number of actual earth terminals will be small, and coordination with terrestrial systems will not be difficult. Since the List of Satellites Approved to Provide Fixed satellite Services (FSS) in Canada does not contain any satellites employing the band 5850-5925 MHz, it is timely to request input on the status between FSS and DSRC systems now designated in the band.


Further Consultation: 

The Department is therefore proposing to establish by domestic footnote that DSRC systems in the FS and MS services will have priority over FSS operation: 

C16X
In the band 5850-5925 MHz the use of the fixed and mobile services has priority over the use of the fixed-satellite service. The use of the fixed-satellite service in this band shall be limited to applications that pose minimal constraints on the deployment of fixed and mobile service systems. An example of such an application would be the use of a small number of large aperture earth stations, taking into account existing and potential service areas for ubiquitous deployment of fixed and mobile service systems

Comment is sought on the proposal for a domestic footnote to ensure that DSRC systems in the FS and MS services have priority over FSS operations in the band 5850-5925 MHz.

A comment period of three months from the release of this document will apply.

Future Consultation: 

The precise definition of use and eligibility for use of ITS applications will be the subject of a future consultation.


3.5. 8 GHz Band — Addition of Low-Capacity Fixed Service

The band 7725-8275 MHz is designated for medium and high-capacity fixed service microwave systems. In the consultation document the Department proposed the addition of a designation for fixed service low-cpacity systems in the band. While there was general support for the proposal, Department of National Defence (DND) was opposed to the addition.

The band 7900-8400 MHz is shared with FSS (Earth-to-space), limited to the Government of Canada (GoC) and used by DND for a small number of earth stations. The band is used by DND and by NATO countries for national and internationally deployed military FSS communications. DND operates a NATO terminal at Folly Lake, Nova Scotia, and has invested heavily in transportable Tactical Long-Range Communications Terminals (TLRCT). The addition of low-cpacity FS would impede the short notice military deployment of these FSS terminals across the country because of the need to coordinate with an anticipated increased number of FS systems. DND is also developing a number of suitcase-size FSS terminals in this military band. The Department notes that in the U.S., a similar FSS allocation, further restricted to military use, is shared with a number of FS applications. While the band is allocated exclusively to the Government, fixed service uses include point-to-point microwave links for remote data connections from air traffic control radars, weather, vessel traffic information, SCADA or the management of electric power distribution systems, as well as military fixed service applications.

Spectrum Pairings

Spectrum Pairings

Spectrum Pairings (the long description is located below the image)
Description of Figure 1

Spectrum Pairings

The frequency band 7125 MHz – 8500 MHz is represented in a diagram which depicts four rows of rectangles.

The first row consists of two non-adjacent rectangles. The first rectangle indicates that the frequency band between 7250 MHz and 7375 MHz is assigned to the MSS s-E (Mobile Satellite Service in the space to Earth direction). The second rectangle indicates that the frequency band between 7975 MHz and 8025 MHz is assigned to the MSS E-s (Earth to space direction). An asterisk in both rectangles indicates that these two allocations are paired.

The second row shows the frequency band 7125 MHz to 8500 MHz and is represented in a diagram which depicts one row of ten adjacent rectangles. This indicates that the frequency band 7125 MHz – 8500 MHz is divided into ten frequency segments. The first border of the first rectangle represents the lower frequency limit of 7125 MHz. The borders between each rectangle represent simultaneously the lower frequency limit of the frequency segment on the right and the upper frequency limit of the frequency segment on the left. The last border of the last rectangle represents the upper frequency limit of 8500 MHz. The ten frequency segments are allocated as follows:

  • the first between 7125 MHz and 7250 MHz shows 125 MHz;
  • the second between 7250 MHz and 7300 MHz shows an empty rectangle;
  • the third starts at 7300 MHz and does not indicate an upper frequency limit but shows 125 MHz;
  • the fourth rectangle does not indicate a lower or upper frequency limit but shows 150 MHz;
  • the fifth rectangle is empty and does not indicate a lower or upper frequency limit;
  • the sixth rectangle does not indicate a lower frequency limit but indicates an upper frequency limit of 7725 MHz and shows 150 MHz;
  • the seventh between 7725 MHz and 7975 MHz shows 250 MHz;
  • the eighth between 7975 MHz and 8025 MHz shows an empty rectangle;
  • the ninth between 8025 MHz and 8275 MHz shows 250 MHz; and
  • the tenth and final between 8275 MHz and 8500 MHz shows 225 MHz.

The third row consists of two non-adjacent rectangles. The first rectangle indicates that the frequency band between 7250 MHz and 7750 MHz is assigned to the Fixed Satellite Service in the space to Earth direction (FSS space-Earth). The second rectangle indicates that the frequency band between 7900 MHz and 8400 MHz is assigned to the Fixed Satellite Service in the Earth to space direction (FSS Earth to space).

The fourth and final row is one rectangle indicating that the frequency band between 8025 MHz and 8400 MHz is assigned to the Earth Exploration Satellite Service in the space to Earth direction (EESS space-Earth).

The pairing for this FSS spectrum in the space-to-Earth (downlink) direction is in the band 7250-7750 MHz. This overlaps the band 7125-7725 MHz (7 GHz) designated for use by low, medium and high-capacity systems in the fixed service on a co-primary basis with FSS.

In the considerations for the C band it was noted that the low level of available margin makes satellite receivers susceptible to even low levels of interference, making coordination with terrestrial systems difficult. Conversely, satellite uplinks are not significantly affected by terrestrial transmitters, and since terrestrial receivers typically have more available margin than satellite receivers, sharing is deemed to be more manageable than is the case in the satellite downlink band.

The concern with the addition of low-cpacity FS was the need to coordinate with an increased number of FS systems. Since this is inherently more difficult to achieve with receiving earth terminals than transmitting terminals, from an FSS perspective it would seem preferable to encourage the use of low-cpacity systems in the uplink band.

An additional issue is that the Department has established preferred access for electric power utilities to parts of the 7 GHz microwave band for the carriage of critical telemetry, control and protection circuits by identifying two pairs of 30 MHz channels for their use. While low-cpacity spectrum was only recently added to the band, the uptake of use for low-cpacity in this portion of the spectrum has not been great. In making the designation for low-cpacity it was anticipated that a transition from analogue to digital systems by the utilities would make more spectrum available. This has not been the case, however, with the spectrum requirements in the 7 GHz band increasing in many areas. In the process of upgrading their systems to digital, some electric utilities have requested multiple 30 MHz channels. While the entire band is designated for high-capacity, the current Standard Radio System Plan (SRSP) has limited the number of 30 MHz channels in the band in order to facilitate access by low-cpacity systems. This has meant that the high-capacity systems either use the adjacent band or implement on a non-standard basis. An additional benefit of a designation in the 8 GHz band for low-cpacity systems is that some additional high-capacity channels could be considered in the 7 GHz band. This would simply require a revision of the SRSP by the Department in consultation with industry.

Recognizing the importance of GoC FSS use of the band and the concerns expressed by DND, the Department still sees value in the addition of a designation for low-cpacity fixed service in the 8 GHz band shared with FSS in the Earth-to-space direction.


Decision:

The Department is adding a designation for low-cpacity systems in the fixed service to the band 7725-8275 MHz.


In addition, since the consultation, DND has requested access to more of the band 7900-8025 MHz for military mobile-satellite service (MSS) applications. Present NATO satellites only carry 50 MHz (7975-8025 MHz) of the ITU MSS (primary) allocation in the band 7900-8025 MHz under footnote 5.461. The next generation of NATO satellites, which will be acquired under the NATO SATCOM Post-2000 Program, will have the capacity to use the full 7900-8025 MHz band for MSS use. The increased emphasis on deployed forces communications as opposed to strategic communications makes an increase in capacity for military mobile-satellite users necessary. While international footnote 5.461 making the allocation for MSS has been accepted in the Canadian Table of Frequency Allocations for the band 7900-8025 MHz (Earth-to-space), a primary allocation for MSS has only been made in the band 7975-8025 MHz. This allocation is further limited to Government of Canada use by domestic footnote C50. Current spectrum utilization policies for the fixed service in the band avoid the use of the 50 MHz of spectrum allocated and designated for MSS due to the difficulty in coordination between the two services. This request is currently on hold pending additional clarification of the requirement. It will therefore not be treated in this document.

4.0 The Ku Band

The Ku-band refers to frequencies within the range 10.7 GHz - 14.5 GHz. The conventional bands are 11.45-12.2 GHz, and 13.75-14.5 GHz. The allotment bands are 10.7-10.95 GHz, 11.2-11.45 GHz, and 12.75-13.25 GHz.

4.1 Background

In Canada, the predominant use by the FSS in the Ku band is in the exclusive 11.7-12.2/14-14.5 GHz portions of the conventional band. As discussed previously, the WTO agreement has allowed the introduction of competition in the fixed-satellite market and foreign fixed-satellite stations are being approved for use in Canada. In the consultation document, the Department noted that there are seven filings in the U.S. for global NGSO FSS systems. It is anticipated that direct-to-subscriber applications within the Ku bands will continue to grow. One of the key aspects that has facilitated access directly to business is the small size of antenna required at these frequencies. In Canada, the bands 11.7-12.7 GHz and 13.75-14.5 GHz are exclusively for satellite services; however, there are two bands 10.7-11.7 GHz and 12.7-13.25 GHz which have a significant number of fixed systems.

As discussed in the consultation, the Department has allowed use of spectrum beyond the conventional Ku bands in the extended conventional and allotment Ku bands. Operations using satellites in the bands 10.7-11.45 GHz and 12.7-13.25 GHz have been restricted to large antennas mostly located outside urban areas in accordance with domestic footnote C16A, which emphasises that customer service links will not be licensed in any of these bands prior to a public consultation which will consider the interests of all spectrum users.

Having received strong representation from the satellite industry that fixed-satellites or earth station deployment should not be limited in these bands, the Department noted that Canada has three orbital positions (107.3°W, 111.1°W and 114.9°W longitude) available at which the Ku allotment bands can be used. Input was requested under the individual bands as to whether opening the allotment bands for deployment of earth stations in Canada on a coordinated first-come, first-served basis with the fixed service would stimulate the development of these orbital positions, or whether the application of domestic footnote C16A should be retained.

4.2 10.7-11.7 GHz

The fixed service and fixed-satellite service (space-to-Earth) share the band on a primary basis. It is used by low, medium and high-capacity digital line-of-sight radio systems in the fixed service. Typical deployments of these fixed systems include single and multi-hop point-to-point configurations. These systems are authorized on a site-by-site and frequency-by-frequency basis.

This is also a downlink (space-to-Earth) band for the fixed-satellite service, with pairings for use prescribed by domestic footnotes C41 and C16B, and constraints on location and antenna size under footnote C16A.

In the comments to the consultation, the removal of the application of domestic footnote C16A to the band 10.7-11.7 GHz was supported by users and service providers with satellite interests in the band, and opposed by entities with fixed service interests in the band. It was the view of the FSS community that the FS and FSS should be coordinated on a first-come, first-served basis. Ubiquitous deployment of either service is not foreseen in this band and as such domestic footnote C16A is not required. In view of the FCC deliberation on the sharing issues between FS systems and GSO FSS earth stations, the FS community believes that it would be premature to provide full flexibility for the deployment of FSS earth stations in the band 10.7-11.7 GHz on a coordinated first-come, first-served basis with the fixed service. Therefore, the current provision in the footnote C16A should be retained.

It is also worth noting that as discussed at C band, there could be similar difficulties in coordinating transmitting terrestrial systems into an area where a receiving earth terminal has been licensed, particularly in urban areas. This is due to the low level of available margin which makes the satellite receivers susceptible to even low levels of interference.

Harmonization of use with the U.S. was seen as an important objective by both fixed service and fixed-satellite service commenters. The 10.7-11.7 GHz band has been identified in two proceedings as a future home for FS point-to-point systems to be relocated from the 2 GHz band. The consultation noted that in the U.S., footnote NG104 limits 10.7-11.7 GHz GSO FSS to international systems, which effectively limits the size and number of earth stations which are likely to appear. A further Order (FCC-00-418) limits the implementation of NGSO FSS to feeder link/gateway operations, which have been carefully defined to exclude service links directly to customer premises. The intention was to facilitate the coordination process between NGSO FSS earth stations and terrestrial operations by limiting the FSS to low density implementations. The continued use and growth of terrestrial systems within the band would be protected by effectively limiting the size and number of earth stations which could be implemented in the band.

A recent notice of proposed rulemaking discusses the possible adoption of a ‘growth zone proposal' intended to supplement existing coordination procedures and facilitate sharing between fixed services and new NGSO FSS systems (FCC 03-318).

The Department notes that the process to differentiate between feeder links/gateways and service links in order to ensure sharing compatibility with the fixed service was difficult. While comments to the consultation indicated that the definitions may not align with intended implementations of future FSS systems, comments also indicated that the kinds of applications which would require ubiquitous deployments of earth terminals are not expected, in part due to the shared nature of the band.

The Department is of the view that a requirement for earth stations to be individually coordinated and authorized (i.e. limited to non-ubiquitous deployments) will be sufficient to balance requirements and ensure compatibility on a first-come, first-served basis. The Department notes that there are adjacent bands in which the FSS has exclusive access. Therefore the Department expects that in implementing FSS earth terminals, practicable measures will be taken to facilitate the continued introduction of FS systems in the band, particularly in the vicinity of urban centres.

The Department is therefore implementing its proposal to allow first-come, first-served deployment of both FS andS FSS services and will therefore not retain the application of the current version of C16A to the band 10.7-11.45 GHz. Fixed service and fixed-satellite service stations will be coordinated on a first-come, first-served basis as is the current accepted practice in the conventional C band.


Decision:

The Department will allow first-come, first-served deployment of both the fixed service and the fixed-satellite service in the band 10.7-11.7 GHz, and will also remove the application of the current version of domestic footnote C16A.

Details of the changes to the Canadian Table of Frequency Allocations can be found in the Allocation section of this document.

4.3 12.7-13.25 GHz

The fixed service and fixed-satellite service (Earth-to-space) share the band on a primary basis.

The band 12.7-13.25 GHz is used by Very High-capacity Microwave (VHCM) point-to-multipoint, TV studio to transmitter links and TV pickups. The majority of these fixed microwave systems carry a number of analogue vestigial-sideband amplitude-modulated television signals on consecutive radio channels spaced 6 MHz apart. Typical implementations use the entire band to deliver a cable program package in a star configuration from a main cable head-end to cable distribution points in adjacent towns and communities. VHCM systems also provide cable TV feeds to distribution points within large cable television (CATV) systems. While these systems are authorized on a site-by-site and frequency-by-frequency basis, the level of deployment of systems in this band can be considered as high density. The current utilization policy entitled Revisions to Microwave Spectrum Utilization Policies in the Range of 1-20 GHz (SP 1-20 GHz) limits the use of the band by FSS systems to implementations which do not constrain the use of the band by VHCM systems used in conjunction with CATV systems.

In the consultation document, the Department noted that in recent years with the wide deployment of fibre and coaxial CATV networks, a number of links in many VHCM systems have been decommissioned.  Comment from the Canadian Cable and Television Association (CCTA) indicated that while this may be true in certain circumstances, the band still provides a cost effective alternative to fibre distribution in many other applications such as within and between regional systems.

In the comments to the consultation, the removal of the application of domestic footnote C16A to the band 12.7-13.25 GHz was supported by users and service providers with satellite interests in the band, and opposed by entities with fixed service interests in the band. It was the view of the FSS community that the FS and FSS should be coordinated on a first-come, first-served basis. Ubiquitous deployment of either service is not foreseen in this band and as such domestic footnote C16A is not required. In view of the FCC deliberation on the sharing issues between FS systems and GSO FSS earth stations, the FS community believes that it would be premature to provide full flexibility for the deployment of FSS earth stations in the band 12.7-13.25 GHz on a coordinated first-come, first-served basis with the fixed service, therefore, the current provision in the footnote C16A should be retained.

It is also worth noting that as discussed at C band, satellite uplinks are not significantly affected by terrestrial transmitters, and since terrestrial receivers typically have more available margin than satellite receivers, sharing is deemed to be more manageable than is the case in the 10.7-11.7 GHz (satellite downlink) band.

Harmonization of use with the U.S. was seen as an important objective by both fixed service and fixed-satellite service commenters. The consultation noted that in the U.S., footnote NG104 limits 12.7-13.25 GHz GSO FSS to international systems, which effectively limits the size and number of earth stations which are likely to appear. A further Order (FCC-00-418) limits the implementation of NGSO FSS to feeder link/gateway operations, which have been carefully defined to exclude service links directly to customer premises. The intention was to facilitate the coordination process between NGSO FSS earth stations and terrestrial operations by limiting the FSS to low density implementations. The continued use and growth of terrestrial systems within the band would be protected by effectively limiting the size and number of earth stations which could be implemented in the band. A recent notice of proposed rulemaking discusses the possible adoption of a coordination rules intended to supplement existing coordination procedures and facilitate sharing between mobile BAS/CARS operations and new NGSO FSS systems (FCC 03-318).

The Department notes that the process to differentiate between feeder link/gateways and service links in order to ensure sharing compatibility with the fixed service was difficult. While comments to the consultation indicated that the definitions may not align with intended implementations of future FSS systems, comments also indicated that the kinds of applications which would require ubiquitous deployments of earth terminals are not expected, in part due to the shared nature of the band.

The current utilization policy in SP 1-20 GHz limits the use of the band by FSS systems to implementations which do not constrain the use of the band by VHCM systems used in conjunction with CATV systems. The Department is of the view that the terrestrial use of the 12.7-13.25 GHz band is sufficiently mature that a requirement for earth stations to be individually coordinated and authorized (i.e. limited to non-ubiquitous deployments) will be sufficient to balance requirements and ensure compatibility on a first-come, first-served basis. The Department notes that there are adjacent bands in which the FSS has exclusive access. Therefore the Department expects that in implementing FSS earth terminals, practicable measures will be taken to facilitate the continued introduction of FS systems in the band, particularly in the vicinity of urban centres.

The Department is therefore implementing its proposal to allow first-come, first-served deployment of both FS and FSS services and will therefore not retain the application of the current version of C16A to the band 12.7-13.25 GHz. Fixed service and fixed-satellite service stations will be coordinated on a first-come, first-served basis as is the current accepted practice in the conventional C band.

In June 2001, Radio Systems Policy 015, Microwave Licensing Policy Respecting Carriage of Program Signals to Broadcasting Undertakings, (RP-015) was rescinded and replaced by Radio Systems Policy 022, Microwave Licensing Policy Framework (RP-022).The use of microwave radio facilities licensed to broadcasters for the carriage of program signals and other telecommunications services was liberalized with the removal of obligations for broadcasters to share, on a non-profit basis, new microwave radio facilities and/or programming signals with other broadcasters.

In the consultation the Department also solicited comments on the types of point-to-multipoint fixed system deployments which will continue to use the spectrum in the band 12.7-13.25 GHz, as well as the kind of new applications envisaged for this band. Comment particularly from the CCTA indicated that this band would remain an integral part of cable distribution networks for the foreseeable future. The Department was urged not to make additional specific designations for applications such as broadband wireless access or wireless cable distribution to the home. However, and in light of RP-022, the Department is of the view that it would still be timely to extend the designation for use of the fixed service in this band to include any application which supports broadcasting services, rather than favouring those used solely in conjunction with CATV systems.


Decision:

The Department will allow first-come, first-served deployment of both fixed service and fixed-satellite service in the band 12.7-13.25 GHz, and remove the application of the current version of domestic footnote C16A C16A.

The Department is extending the designation for use of the fixed service in this band to include any application which supports broadcasting services, rather than favouring those used solely in conjunction with CATV systems.

Details of the changes to the Canadian Table of Frequency Allocations can be found in the Allocation section of this document.


4.4 Two-way Messaging and Position Tracking

Two-way messaging and position tracking satellite systems (mobile-satellite applications) currently operate in North America on a secondary basis using fixed-satellite capacity in the bands 11.7-12.2 GHz (space-Earth) and 14.0-14.5 GHz (Earth-space). The consultation asked for input on action which could or should be taken regarding these applications. Comment indicated that these systems have already been operating for a number of years and have been successfully coordinated for use on a Canadian satellite. The Department will therefore not make additional provisions for these applications at this time.


Decision:

The Department will make no additional provisions for two-way messaging and position tracking satellite systems (mobile-satellite applications) currently operating on a secondary basis using fixed-satellite capacity.


4.5 13.75-14.0 GHz

The band 13.75-14.0 GHz is currently allocated to the fixed-satellite service in the uplink direction (Earth-to-space) and the radiolocation service on a co-primary basis. Prior to World Radio Conference 2003 (WRC-2003), the use of this band for fixed-satellite services was restricted to earth stations having a minimum antenna diameter of 4.5 meters. Regulatory changes adopted at WRC-2003 have relaxed these restrictions by allowing transmit earth stations as small as 1.2 meters in diameter, but adding a power flux-density (PFD) level to be met at the coast and at the border of an administration's territory for antennas smaller than 4.5 meters. The PFD limits mean that transmitting earth stations operating within a geographical strip along the border and the coast will need to apply mitigating techniques in order to comply. The calculated width of this geographic strip depends very much on the assumptions used for the calculations. While the limits have been adopted, the methodologies and allowable assumptions to determine compliance have not been stipulated in the Radio Regulations.

The Department is currently examining the implications both domestically and internationally of facilitating the implementation of earth stations using smaller diameter antennas in Canada. Currently, domestic footnote C41Footnote 2 suggests a pairing of the use of the band 13.75-14.0 GHz by the fixed-satellite services with the band 11.45-11.7 GHz in the space-to-Earth direction. Conditions have changed sufficiently since this footnote has last been modified in 1994, that the Department could consider alternative pairings for the downlink.


Provisional Changes: 

The Department provisionally adopts the changes to the Radio Regulations made at WRC-03 which will facilitate the operation of transmitting earth stations with antenna diameters as small as 1.2 meters in the band 13.75-14.0 GHz under the restrictions prescribed in the Radio Regulations.

A comment period of 30 days from the release of this document will apply to these provisional changes. In the absence of compelling arguments to the contrary, these changes will be incorporated in the Canadian Table of Frequency Allocations.

Details of changes to the Canadian Table of Frequency Allocations can be found in the Allocation section of this document.


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