Joint EC - CEPT workshop on WRC-19

11 May 2017, 17:00

Joint EC-CEPT workshop on WRC-19 preparation
Brussels, 11 May 2017
Summary of workshop

The European Commission (EC) and CEPT held a joint 1-day-workshop to discuss the status of preparations for WRC-19 based on initial views on key Agenda Items. The workshop was jointly chaired by Andreas Geiss (DG CONNECT, EC) and Alexander Kühn (CPG Chairman, CEPT). The co-chairmen noted that this workshop continues the good tradition of cooperation between the EC and CEPT. As a general introduction, Mr. Kühn presented an overview of the CEPT preparation process.

The workshop was then structured in 4 main sessions, each addressing a different sector. A summary of the discussions is presented below.


Panel session 1 - Digital Agenda for Europe (wireless broadband, ESIM, RLAN)

EU Policy context

Branimir Stantchev (DG CONNECT, EC) presented the EU strategy on 5G by providing an overview of 5GPPP, the Electronic Communications Code, the 5G Action Plan and the 5G pioneer bands – 700 MHz, 3.6 GHz and 26 GHz.

For WRC-19 AI 1.13 on identification of new bands for IMT-2020 (5G), the EC is supportive of 26 GHz, 40 GHz, 32 GHz and 66-71 GHz.

Regarding 28 GHz, the EC supports CEPTs view, including the feasibility of a common tuning range with the 26 GHz-band. The EC is also considering broadband (5G) via satellite in that band.

He further outlined that AI 1.16 (RLAN) 5725-5850 MHZ provides interesting opportunities, if studies show that sharing is feasible.

State of preparations in CEPT

Steve Green (ECC PT1 Chair) presented the preliminary CEPT position on AI1.13. 26, 32 and 40 GHz are considered as priority bands for study, in line with the CEPT Roadmap on 5G and strategic views of the EU. Important sharing studies are ongoing in 26 GHz. There is also recent interest in 66-71 GHz.

Alexandre Kholod (CPG PTD Chair) presented the preliminary CEPT position on AI1.16. CEPT supports relaxation of conditions within 5150-5350 MHz and a new allocation in 5725-5850 MHz to meet the need for more contiguous RLAN spectrum, but careful studies are required to ensure co-existence with other services. Specific usage of the upper band for road tolling in CEPT needs to be considered. In 5350-5470 MHz no change is supported, as compatibility does not appear feasible in the absence of additional mitigation techniques. Discussions on 5850-5925 MHz are at an early stage, noting the complex compatibility with FSS and ITS.

Alexandre Vallet (CPG Vice-Chair) presented the preliminary CEPT position on Earth Stations in motion (ESIM) in 17.7-19.7 GHz and 27.5-28.5 GHz (AI 1.5). The possibility to use the complete 29 GHz-band is being explored, parts of which are already open. Various ESIM scenarios are being considered - air, sea and land - in 17.7-19.7 GHz. ESIM should not claim protection from existing services.

Views from stakeholders 

Luciana Camargos (GSMA) highlighted the need to distinguish between AI1.13/IMT2020 and 5G – these are not entirely the same thing. The bands in AI1.13 are not the only bands for 5G. For GSMA the priority AI1.13 band is 26 GHz. 40 GHz also has also potential, whereas 32 GHz is lower priority due to the lower available bandwidth. Bands above 45 GHz are still under discussion.

Zach Rosenbaum (O3b) presented views on ESIM (AI 1.5). The busy airspace offers potential for passenger connectivity. There are also benefits to airlines for flight data connectivity, which could reduce aircraft ground time. Connectivity could also be provided in remote areas where mobile or fibre are not available. This requires cooperation with mobile operators. O3b believes EC and CEPT should promote 28 GHz for ESIMs internationally.

Open floor Discussion

The importance of protection of earth exploration satellite service (EESS) earth stations and radioastronomy (RAS) stations was noted. The main current concern is the provided level for unwanted emissions into the adjacent passive 24 GHz bands.

Industry noted challenges to meet the EC’s 5G rollout objectives, including the ambitious overall timeframe and current usage in the 3400-3800 MHz band.

A question was raised on the identification in the EC 5G Action Plan of some existing mobile broadband bands as less suitable for enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB), despite technology neutrality. This is because 5GPPP has advised that a minimum 100 MHz bandwidth is needed for eMBB.


Panel session 2 - Research and environmental policy (meteorology, Earth exploration, HAPS)

EU Policy Context

Giuditta Montesanti (DG GROW, EC) presented on the Europe 2020 Strategy and Horizon 2020 programme. She noted the Galileo (GNSS) and Copernicus (EESS) projects as cornerstones for Europe’s environmental policy which create opportunities for new applications in agriculture, e.g. global crop monitoring or EU CAP compliance monitoring. There are synergies between these projects – for example the Copernicus Sentinel project provides EESS data on soil and crops while GNSS could be used for automated driving of equipment.

State of preparations in CEPT

Gerlof Osinga (CPG PTA Chair) presented the CEPT preliminary positions on AIs 1.2, 1.3, 1.7 and 1.14.

The scientific community is concerned regarding the increased usage of TT&C and mobile in in 401-433 MHz and 399.9-400.05 MHz, which poses a threat to sensitive satellite data collection systems (DCS). EESS, MSS and MetSat need to be protected (AI1.2). CEPT supports in-band power limits, differentiated between GSO and nGSO.
In 460-470 MHz DCS is used to study oceanic and atmospheric conditions. Studies are ongoing to ensure protection of existing mobile and fixed services in the band (AI 1.3). CEPT generally supports an upgrade of the allocation, while maintaining priority of MetSat over EESS.
TT&C for small satellites also needs spectrum (AI1.7). Satellite lifetimes are typically less than 3 years, with 100 satellites per single launch supporting a range of DCS applications. The focus is on bands below 1 GHz. CEPT supports additional allocations or upgrade of existing space operations allocations. 154-156 MHz, 405.9 – 406 and 406-406.1 MHz are not viewed as feasible.

AI1.14 concerns regulatory extensions for HAPS. The global 47/48 GHz HAPS band is not considered suitable due to high rain attenuation. Better understanding of scenarios, spectrum characteristics and requirements is needed. Therefore CEPT supports studies and the need for protection of existing services. CEPT re-iterated its priority for 5G at 26 GHz.

Views from stakeholders

Ralf Ewald (DLR-German Aerospace Centre) highlighted the importance of DCS. Some devices are very small and use low power, so frequencies below 1 GHz are most appropriate. However DCS needs protection from small satellites in 400 MHz. A primary allocation in 460-470 MHz would enable global usage. Europe is leading in this field, but the collected data also provides socio-economic benefit at a global scale. The bandwidth requirements are low (12 MHz for uplink and less for downlink).

Talayeh Hazareh (CRAF) noted that RAS is a world of extremes, involving reception of extremely weak signals from very far, very old parts of the universe. This provides knowledge of how the universe has evolved. Frequencies are set by nature, so there are no alternatives. CRAF has interest in several AIs, in particular the NGSO satellite AIs 1.6, 1.7 and 1.8, and the mobile AIs 1.13 and 1.15.

Open floor Discussion

The protection of RAS against new GMDSS (AI1.8) transmissions was raised, noting that GMDSS usage is far out at sea and therefore far away from RAS sites. However existing interference is a problem. Possible alternative protection techniques were discussed. Space agencies are considering the possibility for a RAS station on the Moon. However those thoughts are in a very early stage of study.

Panel session 3 - Space policy (satellites)

EU policy context

Tanja Zegers (DG GROW, EC) drew attention to the size the European space industry: 1/3 of all satellites are manufactured in Europe. Recent increased competition in the sector is referred to as ‘New Space’ disruptive innovations, including reusable launchers, small satellites and mega constellations, all of which aim to reduce cost. In the future continued innovation and R&D is necessary, and to adapt to new user needs. Security concerns and the link with defence policy were noted. Existing experiences, such as Galileo and Copernicus, indicate the need for European autonomy, in terms of accessing space (launchers), protection of frequencies and infrastructure. The objective of the new EU GOVSATCOM is to ensure reliable, secure and cost effective satellite services for civilian and military services such as surveillance and crisis management, in various bands between 6 and 50 GHz (e.g. X, Ku, Ka Band).

Bjorn Thegeby (DG CONNECT, EC) noted that the ITU satellite spectrum context is not an area where the EU normally intervenes. However there is interest in AI 7 to modernise satellite procedures, due to the heavy satellite industry presence in the EU.

State of preparations in CEPT

Alexandre Vallet (CPG Vice-Chair) presented the CEPT preliminary positions on AIs 1.6, 7 and 9.1.7.

AI 1.6 concerns the regulatory framework for NGSO FSS in bands from 37.5-51.4 GHz. Studies are necessary to ensure protection of EESS and RAS. CEPT supports a review of the framework.

AI 7 concerns the general international satellite regulatory framework, considering 8-9 sub-items. In general CEPT supports reviewing provisions to improve accuracy and efficiency.

Studies on issue 9.1.7 aim towards additional measures to limit unauthorised transmissions. CEPT opposes this AI, as enforcement is a national matter, and global limitation of earth stations is generally not desirable.

Views from stakeholders

Daniela Genta (ESOA) noted the important role of satellites in the context of 5G. The EC Space Strategy has noted the use of satellite to meet Digital Agenda objectives, but industry is concerned as terrestrial systems move into higher bands where satellites operate, so coexistence is crucial. EC and RSPG need to continue to have a clear position on the protection of earth stations. The CPG position on 28 GHz (see AI 1.5) is unambiguous and the EC is encouraged to lead and advocate globally on this.

Open floor discussion

ESOA clarified that satellite can provide 5G capacity through various bands. 28 GHz will not be considered exclusively.

A question was raised on how CEPT addresses overlap of bands between AIs. Formal overlaps, which address the same frequency band, are clearly reflected in CEPT briefs and preliminary positions. CEPT has not yet identified any potential case of conflict between its positions. Sometimes different issues are addressed, such as with AI 1.6 and 1.13. Sometimes the band is not supported, such as 38 GHz in AI1.14 and AI1.13.


Panel session 4 - Transport policy (GMDSS, GADSS, ITS, Rail)

EU Policy context

Isabelle Vandoorne (DG MOVE, EC) presented on EC initiatives on transport with a focus on safety issues. The railway sector is migrating from GSM-R to a new system by 2030. Large scale deployment on ITS is planned to start around 2019. An upcoming ITS Directive will address security aspects.

In the maritime sector there is increasing use of the Automatic Identification System, and a VHF Data Exchange System is being developed. In the aeronautical sector, coherent input is needed from ICAO to work further on GADSS.

Giuseppe Rizzo (DG CONNECT, EC) noted the existing technology neutral EC Decision from 2008 on safety related ITS in 5875-5905 MHz. Deployment of G5 technology is planned in 2019, whereas LTE-V2X is a more advanced long term proposal. The EC supports the additional use of the 63-64 GHz band.

The RSPG Opinion on ITS notes a need to ensure interoperability. Opportunities for mobile networks to provide ITS are being studied. For urban Rail the Opinion recommends introduction of Communication Based Track Control within ITS (the existing definition is road only). EC may address this aspect soon.

The three main objectives for rail communication are to ensure interference free operation, transition to the next generation and make efficient use of the E-GSM-R bands (possibly considering other uses such as SRD and IoT).

Spectrum for transport is not traditionally regulated at EU level (ITU, IMO, ICAO are responsible), but EC has an interest in modernisation.

State of preparations in CEPT

Alexandre Kholod (CPG PTD Chair) presented the CEPT preliminary positions on AIs 1.11 and 1.12, which concern global or regional harmonised bands for railway communications and ITS, respectively. In both cases CEPT believes existing bands can support the need, so no revision to the Radio Regulations is needed. Non-mandatory ITU-R Reports or Recommendations could provide suitable harmonisation. AI1.11 should be limited to critical communications, as passenger communications is better addressed under AI1.13. The existing pan-European framework for GSM-R is sufficient, including cross-border co-ordination. For AI1.12, sharing with other services is already addressed so no additional restrictions are needed. Use of 5855-5925 MHz will need to ensure protection of FSS earth stations. This AI should be limited to traffic management and safety information.

Martin Weber (CPG PTC Chair) presented the CEPT preliminary positions on AIs 1.8 and 1.10, which concern regulatory actions to support GMDSS and GADSS, respectively. The requirements need to be specified by IMO and ICAO. For AI 1.8 there are concerns over the implications of a safety system in a secondary allocation. Compatibility with RAS in adjacent band needs to be solved. For AI1.10, CEPT supports the requirement for GADSS, but compatibility with existing uses needs to be addressed, and the issue may need to be deferred to next WRC.

Views from stakeholders

Niels Peter Skov Andersen (CAR2CAR Communication Consortium - C2C-CC) presented on C-ITS and short range communication. The 5.9 GHz band is reserved in the EU and US, and there is existing cooperation. Asia-Pacific has a similar interest. Communication ranges are short (100-600 metres). The industry is moving towards fully automated driving in five phases. Pilot projects are ongoing across Europe. Volkswagen has announced deployment of G5 in cars from 2019. GM have already launched in US. The motorcycle industry aims to deploy in 2020. Strategic information and infotainment could be provided by mobile networks.

As this is a safety critical issue it is not suitable to let the market decide on technology. Coordination on interoperable technology is needed.

Raffi Khatcherian (Eurocontrol) presented views on aviation related to AIs 1.10 and 9.1.4. GADSS (AI 1.10) is needed to be able to track aircraft if they divert in case of an emergency, to provide more focussed areas for rescue operations. Existing terrestrial infrastructure is sufficient, but satellite is crucial for remote regions. Precise info on timing, location and heading is needed, with intervals from 1 to 15 minutes for distress and non-distress scenarios.

Another future looking aspect concerns identification of spectrum requirements for Space Planes (Issue 9.1.4). Space planes aim to provide flights from Europe to Australia in less than 2 hours. Several spectrum related issues are under study including the type of service, technical characteristics and Doppler shift.

Open floor discussion

Discussion focussed on the competing technologies for the implementation of ITS. EC regulation is technology neutral, but compatibility between different technologies needs to be ensured to avoid interference. The market can decide which technology to use, but systems need to be able to communicate with each other. Two technologies could lead to a split in spectrum, and possibly double the demand. The question for WRC is about global spectrum harmonisation.

It was noted that the WRC positions and EU policy context on railways are different issues. The CEPT position on harmonisation took into account the existing European harmonised bands.


RSPG activities in relation to WRC-19

Alexander Kühn presented the RSPG Interim Opinion on WRC-19, in his role as RSPG WG WRC-19 Chairman. The RSPG has identified 6 AIs with relation to EU policies, and 1 AI with implications for EU harmonisation (AI1.16 on RLAN in 5GHz). These will be used as a basis for further consideration. The Final Opinion will be published in Q2 2018.



The co-chairs thanked the participants. Andreas Geiss noted that the views presented during the workshop will be taken into account in further development of EC positions. EC DG CONNECT would welcome any further views from stakeholders. Alexander Kühn noted that CEPT and Europe are on a good track. No significant diverging views were presented in the workshop. He invited all stakeholders to attend CEPT meetings or to provide inputs.