Wimax can disrupt satellite services, says report

05 Mar 2008

Wimax poses a significant interference threat to satellite signals transmitted in the C-band frequency, according to a report by the Satellite Users Interference Reduction Group (SUIRG).

SUIRG is a non-profit association working on ways to counter problems posed by satellite radio frequency interference or RFI.

The group recently conducted field tests on the compatibility of fixed satellite services (FSS) and Wimax services sharing the C-band spectrum.

Said field test was performed to validate previous tests and provide conclusive results on the incompatibility of C-band spectrum sharing between fixed frequency service (FSS) satellite transmissions and Wimax services.

The primary objective was to measure interference levels generated by fixed Wimax transmissions into an FSS satellite receiving station.

Test results showed that the Wimax transmit signal could cause significant problems to a satellite digital signal well in excess of a 12-kilometer distance.

Based on the conducted tests, FSS antennas cannot co-exist with Wimax systems ranging from 50 to over 200 kilometers depending on local terrain and Wimax output levels.

"The C-band is in many ways the lifeline of the satellite industry and protecting that spectrum from the threat of interference posed by sharing it with broadband wireless access services is of paramount importance," said Robert Ames, SUIRG president.

Ames added: "The results of the test are a firm testament to the need for clearly defined spectrum allocation."

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