SP 23/38 GHz — Spectrum Policy and Licensing Considerations, Fixed Radio Systems in the 23 GHz and 38 GHz Frequency Bands

6.4 Licence Fees

Industry Canada is of the view that licence fees should reflect the economic value of the radio frequency spectrum being used. However, in the absence of a market based mechanism by which this economic value can be revealed, the Department recognizes that such determinations are difficult.

Industry Canada proposes to apply a fee proportional to the geographic area being licensed. An annual fee of $20 per square kilometer per paired block would be applied to each of the 8 pairs of frequency blocks in the 23 GHz band and to each of the 14 pairs of frequency blocks in the 38 GHz band, and an annual fee of $10 per square kilometer per block would be applied to the 4 single blocks in the 38 GHz band. This fee was derived from the LMCS fee of $.50 per household per 500 MHz frequency block, as the total fee for the 66 service areas, divided by the total area served, and pro-rated for 50 MHz blocks. A list of the fees associated to each of the 66 proposed geographic areas is given in Annex B.

The Department seeks comments on the appropriateness of applying a fee based on the area served, especially with respect to the question of whether the Department should prescribe the geographic areas to be authorized. If a fee based on the area served is not appropriate, the Department seeks comments on the methodology that should be used to set fees for each of pre-defined and user defined service areas.

Future competitive bidding processes for licences will generate market data which the Department may use to calibrate fees for licences assigned previously on a first-come first-served basis. As an example, in situations where a licence assigned by auction is practically identical to an existing licence, the licence fee for the latter may be adjusted to match the auction determined fee that will be paid for the former.

6.5 Provisional Licensing Procedure

The Department wishes to complete its consultation on the issues discussed in this document before it releases its area licensing procedure for the 23 GHz and 38 GHz bands. The Department also realizes that some parties may be ready to start providing service before the end of the consultation period. Consequently the Department is prepared to issue radio authorizations in the interim. Interested parties who meet both the policy requirements as described herein and the eligibility requirements as defined in section 6.2 above may apply for an authorization to use frequency block(s) in the 23 GHz and 38 GHz bands. A block, or block pair, will be assigned once in a geographic area and applicants will be eligible for one block, or block pair, during the provisional licensing period. Applicants are not required to provide site specific information with their application, and there will be no fee attached to these authorizations. Once the area licensing procedure comes into effect every effort will be made by the Department to accommodate holders of radio authorizations as well as maintain the block(s) they have been assigned.

These radio authorizations will only be valid until such a time as the final area licensing procedure is released and comes into effect.

6.6 Conditions of Licensing

When installing radio stations, applicants must comply with the procedures for non-site specific stations as outlined in Client Procedures Circular (CPC) 2-0-03 - Environmental Process, Radio frequency Fields and Land-use Consultation. Radio apparatus will need to conform with the appropriate Industry Canada regulations and technical standards.

6.7 Spectrum Availability

At such time as the assignment of single blocks or paired blocks reaches a level of 75% of the spectrum available for authorization in a geographic area, (with the current allocation, 6 of the 8 paired frequency blocks available in the 23 GHz band, 10 of the 14 paired blocks in the 38 GHz band, or 3 or the 4 single blocks in the 38 GHz band) the Department will cease licensing on a first come, first served basis.

At that time, the Department will decide whether or not to undertake a process the objective of which would be to make additional spectrum available. Should additional spectrum ultimately be made available, first come first served licensing would resume. On the other hand should additional spectrum not be made available the Department may initiate a competitive bidding process for the remaining frequency blocks. The first stage of this process would consist of a request for expressions of interest for the remaining blocks. If the results of the request for expressions of interest demonstrate that the number of remaining blocks is sufficient to accommodate the expressed demand, the Department will continue to issue licences on a first come, first served basis. If, on the other hand, the results show that the spectrum availability does not meet the demand, the Department will proceed with a competitive bidding process for the remaining blocks in the service area defined.

6.8 Public Comments

Interested parties are invited to comment on a number of issues related to area licensing in the 23 GHz and 38 GHz bands, as described in section 6 of this document. Interested parties should submit their comments on or before October 22, 1996 to the office of:

Director General
Radiocommunication and Broadcasting Regulatory Branch
Industry Canada
Journal Tower North
300 Slater Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0C8

7. Technical Considerations

Channel blocks will be assigned where there is a requirement for multiple service points or transmission paths within a geographic area, as per the spectrum policy provisions outlined in Sections 4 and 5. Assigned frequency channel blocks may be subdivided and used anywhere within the authorized service area, subject to the rules which will be developed in consultation with industry, in order to reduce the possibility of co-channel and adjacent channel interference.

7.1 Co-existence With Other Systems

There are two aspects to the potential for interference between systems:

  1. power levels into adjacent areas (co-channel)
  2. power levels into adjacent channels (same area)

Operators within the same general area are encouraged to enter into mutually beneficial arrangements to foster efficient spectrum use near their common boundaries. One of the attractive aspects of the block/area assignment is the freedom to use the given spectrum in a particular area with the minimum number of restrictions. Operators will be expected to take full advantage of interference mitigation techniques such as antenna discrimination, polarization, frequency offset, shielding, site selection, power control, etc. to facilitate coexistence with systems of other service providers.

To minimize the occurrence of adjacent channel interference an emission mask that is fixed at the channel edge i.e. independent of frequency tolerance, would be the preferred solution.

These aspects, as well as minimum bit efficiency, antenna standards etc. will be developed in consultation with the Radio Advisory Board of Canada subsequent to the release of this policy. Further, type approval of equipment will be used to facilitate the application of the block/area licensing concept, and the conditions for such should also be considered at the same time.

8. Implementation

It is suggested that applicants contact the nearest office of Industry Canada regarding radio licensing in the bands covered in this policy document. General inquiries about the policy provisions may be addressed to the Spectrum and Radio Services Directorate, Telecommunication Policy Branch, 300 Slater St., Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0C8 (Phone: 613-998-4470/3974) (Fax: 613-952-0567)

Issued under the authority of the Radiocommunication Act

Larry Shaw
Acting Director General
Telecommunications Policy Branch

Annex A

Transmission Capacity (SP 1-20 GHz)
RF Channel Capacity Traffic Load (Mbit/s)(c)

(a) Smaller system capacities are also permitted in LC bands on a case-by-case basis.
(b) Capacities of less than 1.544 Mbit/s are not permitted in channels identified for MC or HC, unless specifically identified in the spectrum policy for the band.
(c) System capacities do not include radio system overhead bits.

Low Capacity (LC) (a)(b) ≥ 1.544 ≤ 24.704
Medium Capacity (MC) > 24.704 ≤ 51.840
High Capacity (HC) > 51.840  

Digital Signal (DS) levels and their relation in the digital transmission hierarchy are shown in the following table:

Digital Signal (DS) levels and their relation in the digital transmission hierarchy
1 voice ch. + signalling
1.544 Mbit/s
1 T1
24 DS-0
6.312 Mbit/s
1 T2
96 DS-0
44.736 Mbit/s
1 T3
672 DS-0
51.84 Mbit/s
1 OC-1
672 DS-0
155.52 Mbit/s
2,016 DS-0
16 STM-1
2.48832 Gbit/s
32,256 DS-0
32 STM-1
4.97664 Gbit/s
64,512 DS-0

Notes: SONET is the North American technology used for STM-1

24 circuits
96 circuits
672 circuits
1 T3
3 T3

Annex B

Proposed Service Areas and Associated Licence Fees
Service Area Fee ($)
per paired
Barrie 4195
Belleville 2138
Brandon 744
Brantford 1717
Brockville 4285
Calgary 11,669
Charlottetown 1421
Chatham 2209
Chicoutimi-Jonquière-Alma 17,775
Cobourg 3013
Cornwall 1486
Courtenay 9277
Drummondville 2860
Edmonton 59,882
Fort McMurray 1327
Fredericton 9622
Granby 3516
Grande Prairie 3690
Guelph/Kitchener 11,675
Halifax 17,281
Joliette 1478
Kamloops 10,215
Kelowna 17,633
Kingston 3661
Lethbridge 3859
London/Woodstock/St Thomas 10,400
Medicine Hat 2090
Moncton 2895
Montréal 58,756
Moose Jaw 920
Nanaimo 25,802
Niagara/St Catharines/Welland 5892
North Bay 2071
Orillia 1882
Ottawa/Hull 40,788
Pembroke 5564
Penticton 1422
Peterborough 3441
Prince George 5577
Québec 17,741
Red Deer 1241
Regina 4521
Rimouski 2720
Rouyn-Noranda 1439
Saint John 7132
Sarnia 3395
Saskatoon 4366
Sault Ste Marie 6259
Sherbrooke 10,146
Sidney 12,998
Sorel 2047
St-Hyacinthe 763
St. John's 6126
Stratford 1128
Sudbury 15,129
Thunder Bay 8064
Timmins 20,118
Toronto 80,279
Trois-Rivières 9805
Val-D'Or 8975
Vancouver 52,900
Victoria 12,440
Victoriaville 1260
Windsor/Leamington 12,441
Winnipeg 12,737

Annex C

Geographic representation of proposed service areas

(The maps contained in Annex C are not available on the Internet. Please request a printed copy of this document for this information.)

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