Satellite operators mull options as pressure for Ka-band uplink spectrum mounts

JAKARTA, Indonesia — Satellite tv for pc operators, together with many in Asia, are rising extra involved that regulators will repurpose worthwhile satellite tv for pc spectrum for next-generation 5G mobile networks.  

Of concern is that regulators would require Ka-band spectrum at 28 gigahertz that satellite tv for pc operators use right now to ship alerts from gateways and, more and more, person terminals as much as their spacecraft. 

Satellite tv for pc operators on the APSAT convention right here June 25 stated that whereas they may struggle to maintain the 28 gigahertz spectrum band, they’re additionally getting ready for tactics to reside with much less of it, or with out it. 

“With the problem of Ka-band, we are attempting as satellite tv for pc operators to face collectively and present the significance of it,” stated Terry Bleakley, Intelsat’s Asia-Pacific regional vice chairman. 

Operators on the Satellite tv for pc 2019 convention in Might voiced concern that 5G mobile operators wish to wrest management of the 28-GHz band, complicating the supply of satellite tv for pc broadband connectivity. 

SES spokesperson Suzanne Ong stated by e mail that the battle over 28 GHz is now being waged on a country-by-country foundation, with international locations just like the U.S. and South Korea pushing to increase mobile use of the spectrum. 

Jennifer Method, EchoStar’s senior vice chairman of regulatory affairs, instructed table4 by e mail that the 28-GHz band was “expressly rejected” as a topic for the 2019 World Radiocommunication Convention that takes place in Egypt this fall. She cautioned, although, that there’s “all the time a possibility,” to have gadgets added if there’s assist.

Yao Fahai, vice chairman of China Satcom, expressed concern that terrestrial communications operators will goal satellite tv for pc spectrum by including future agenda gadgets this fall for a future World Radiocommunication Convention. 

“They may discover extra bands from the area section,” he stated at APSAT. “That’s an enormous headache.” 

The subsequent World Radiocommunication Convention is in 2023.

The near-term risk of countries individually repurposing 28 GHz or the medium-term danger of it returning to international debate at a World Radiocommunication Convention has satellite tv for pc operators nonetheless making contingency plans. 

“There are different bands we are able to take a look at for the uplink, greater as much as Q- and V-bands, so we are able to go greater up the spectrum,” Bleakley stated. “Whereas we’ll look to guard the 28-GHz band, we may also take a look at different bands we are able to use.”

Adi Adiwoso, president and CEO of Indonesian satellite tv for pc operator PSN, stated that as a result of the satellite tv for pc uplink websites are much less frequent, satellite tv for pc and mobile operators might compromise by forming protecting zones round satellite tv for pc gateways that use 28 GHz frequencies. 

“We imagine that there might be some type of a concord the place they’re restricted, as a result of the uplink aspect is for the gateways and there will not be lots of them,” he stated. 

C-band, too

Satellite tv for pc operators, particularly in Asia, additionally stay involved that mobile operators will chip away at extra of the C-band spectrum they use to supply tv broadcasts and different communications providers. C-band spectrum has larger resistance to sign attenuation by rainstorms, making it the popular spectrum for a lot of Asia-Pacific satellite tv for pc operators. 

Huang Baozhong, government vice chairman of Hong Kong-based APT Satellite tv for pc, stated he’s a pessimist on the subject of the way forward for C-band.  

“ every nation, it appears that evidently they’ve much less and fewer assist for the satellite tv for pc trade,” he stated. 

Indonesia will probably be an exception, he stated, however rumblings a couple of mobile sector push for C-band right here have him nervous since most of the firm’s satellites use C-band spectrum. 

“We’re nonetheless specializing in conventional C-band with the Ku-band, with a watch on the way forward for Ka-band excessive throughput, however we have now no [alternative] in the mean time,” he stated. 

Adiwoso stated C-band is below risk from 5G, and that PSN is ready to see what the Indonesian authorities decides in regards to the spectrum. 

Final 12 months Baozhong and AsiaSat CEO Roger Tong blamed Intelsat for opening the floodgates on C-band. Intelsat teamed with Intel on a plan to permit mobile operators within the U.S. to make use of a portion of the C-band for 5G. SES, Eutelsat and Telesat joined the plan, which the U.S. Federal Communications Fee is contemplating as a method to make extra spectrum accessible for 5G. 

Although Intelsat and its companions have described their C-band plan as particular to the U.S., APT Satellite tv for pc, AsiaSat and the Asia Video Trade Affiliation stated its affect shortly unfold to Asia. 

Bleakley stated Intelsat needed to devise a plan due to the mounting stress within the U.S. for C-band.

“We had successfully, a gun pointed at our head,” he stated. 

Bleakley stated Intelsat nonetheless views it as necessary to guard the satellite tv for pc trade’s use of C-band, saying the overwhelming majority of Intelsat’s fleet of round 50 satellites carry C-band capability. 

“We’ve made giant investments all through the world in C-band,” he stated. “We additionally imagine 5G goes to be a large marketplace for satellite tv for pc, so we have to discover a method of working extra carefully with the [mobile network operators] so we are able to cooperate when it is sensible to cooperate.”

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