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IAFI hosts workshop on ‘Spectrum & Regulatory Issues in preparation for WRC-23’

DoT to set up a group to consider delicensing of full 6 GHz band for Low Power Indoor Wi-Fi

ITU-APT Foundation of India (IAFI) hosted a national workshop on “Spectrum & Regulatory issues in preparation for WRC-23” with the focus on GEO and LEO Satellite issues and Wi-Fi in 6Ghz band at Hotel Shangri-La, New Delhi on 12th September 2022. Communications Today was the media partner.

K Rajaraman Secretary (DoT), called upon the satellite and 5G operators to look at using the same spectrum bands in coordination with each other and the decision on use of mm wave bands is likely to be taken in the next 4-5 months. Secretary DoT was speaking at the national workshop on “Spectrum & Regulatory issues in preparation for WRC-23” organized by the ITU-APT Foundation of India (IAFI). Inaugurating the IAFI event, Secretary DoT emphasized that the satellite services are a critical tool to support current and future connectivity needs, for enabling important governmental initiatives, and for meeting the broadband needs of rural, remote, mountainous, and other inaccessible areas for a variety of applications. The event was attended by more than 100 telecom and satellite industry and government stakeholders and covered several key issues including the regulatory aspects of LEO and GEO satellites as well as the WI-Fi 6e spectrum and technology.

A K Tiwari, Member Technology, Digital Communications Commission (DCC), Department of Telecommunications (DoT) was the Guest of Honour for the workshop and spoke on the Spacecom policy that will underline the critical role of low-earth orbit (LEO) satellite system operators in boosting broadband coverage, particularly in rural India, to support Bharti-backed OneWeb, Telesat Lightspeed and other LEO systems, which are preparing to launch high-speed satellite broadband services in India next year.

Bharat Bhatia President ITU-APT Foundation of India (IAFI) highlighted the importance of LEO and GEO satellites for connecting the unconnected, as 40% of the Indian population is still not having any broadband access. The NDCP-18 objective was to provide broadband for all by 2022 along with opportunities for satellite and Wi-Fi6E in India. T.R. Dua, Chairman, ITU-APT profoundly welcomed all the esteemed speakers and introduced the importance of the outcome of WRC-23 will result in an updating of the international spectrum framework, which is detailed in the Radio Regulations, an international treaty published and maintained by the ITU. What happens there will have an impact on important issues such as rural broadband, satellite services and the future of 5G.

Session 1 of the workshop was under the Chairmanship of Ritu Ranjan Mittar, Sr. Deputy Director General, and head of the Telecom Engineering Center of the DoT, who gave spoke on shaping the future of Satellite Industry in India, with a Focus on GSO Satellites. Ms. Revathi Mannepalli, Senior Deputy Wireless Adviser, WPC Wing, DoT & RRB Candidate for PP22 spoke on the importance of GSO Networks as Key enablers for Broadband Penetration.

Kishore Babu, DDG of the DoT spoke on the importance, role and benefits of GSO Satellites complemented with High-throughput satellite (HTS) and Supply-side economics and regulatory need of the hour. Vaibhav Magow, Vice President, Hughes Network System India Pvt. Ltd, emphasised on the role of Satellite Integration into the 5G Infrastructure and explained the conditions/ prerequisites for maximizing the successful integration of satellite networks into the 5G infrastructure. Nadeem Akhtar, Product manager, Arista Networks spoke on why 6 GHz Wi-Fi Matters for India furthermore how Wi-Fi 6E ensures legacy-free operation as it doesn’t carry the burden of older protocols. Bashir Patel, Director, Global Policy & Regulation, ESOA provided technical justification for protecting 6 GHz satellites from IMT in Europe.

Session 2 of the workshop was under the Chairmanship of M K Pattanaik, Sr. DWA of WPC wing of DoT. He introduced the many advantages of NGSO satellites for meeting the connectivity needs of the rural and remote population. The Introductory Presentation during this session was on the key Spectrum and Regulatory Issues of NGSO/LEO satellites by Peng Zhao, Vice President, OneWeb, who further explained mm Wave usage in Satellite Industry along with how Ku- Ka- band are vital bands for Satellite industry, complimented by V/E-band is the future. Dr. Laura Roberti, Director Spectrum and Market Access, TELESAT spoke on the Protection of GSO networks and NGSO-NGSO Coordination along with microwave spectrum assignment and ended her presentation with concept of operation according to the agenda item 1.17 for WRC-23. R Shakya, ITS, DDG (International Relations) DoT enlightened on the evolution of NGSO satellites and way forward for maximizing the potential of Satcom broadband in India and how sustainability of resources is an important factor to reduce space debris. Prof. V Sridhar, International Institute of Information, Bangalore, emphasised on the Taxonomy of radio spectrum, Licensing and Allocation along with the sensitization of Radio spectrum Management and a model for the co-existence of multiple use cases. Lastly, Mahesh Uppal, Director, Com First (India) Pvt. Ltd, spoke on the Spectrum assignments methodology for satellite services in Ku and Ka Bands – Auctions vs. Administrative Assignment, leading to the concluding of the session and opening up of the Q/A session leading to the concluding of the national workshop.

CT Bureau

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