FCC Certifies 3 Companies for CBRS Environmental Sensing
Tuesday, July 30, 2019 | Comments

CommScope, Federated Wireless and Google received FCC certification of their environmental sensing capability (ESC) systems in the 3.5 GHz Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) band.

The ESCs will be used to detect the presence of federal incumbent radar transmissions in the 3.5 GHz band and communicate that information to one or more certified spectrum access systems (SASs).

In April, the companies earned FCC approval for their sensor hardware. They were then required to file network deployment plans. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and FCC used those plans to confirm that the networks will adequately cover the intended dynamic protection areas (DPAs). The FCC notice formally approves the ESC operators to cover specific sets of DPAs.

SASs and ESCs are essential components necessary for operations in the 3.5 GHz band. SASs will serve as advanced, highly automated frequency coordinators across the band, protecting higher tier users from harmful interference from lower tier users and optimizing frequency use.

The ESCs will consist of networks of sensors that will detect the presence of signals from federal radar systems in the band and communicate that information to one or more SASs to facilitate protection of federal incumbents. An ESC network deployment requires dozens of sensor nodes around the U.S. coastlines.

Final approval of SASs by the FCC is still pending, after which initial commercial service in the CBRS band can begin. The full public notice from the FCC is here.

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