Pentagon seeks 'dynamic' solutions for 5G mid-band spectrum operations

by Carlo Munoz

The US Department of Defense is soliciting industry input on how Pentagon leaders can further exploit the range of contiguous-spectrum bandwidth, set aside by department and White House officials solely for the development of 5G mobile networked communications.

Specifically, top leaders with the department’s Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) want to glean industry insights on “innovative solutions and alternative approaches” to enable so-called Dynamic Spectrum Sharing (DSS) strategies and applications, according to a 18 September request for information (RFI).

“The intent is to ensure the greatest effective and efficient use of the Department of Defense’s spectrum for training, readiness, and lethality” in development and fielding of advanced 5G capabilities, agency officials wrote in the solicitation.

At its core, the RFI is driven by the department’s requirement “to best develop and deploy DSS across a broad range of capabilities and for future understanding of how spectrum may be utilized in both 5G and innovative technologies”, the solicitation added.

DISA officials have also opted to expand the pool of possible DSS solutions outside the realm of the traditional defence industrial base, instead adopting a strategy of seeking “the art of the possible”, the RFI stated.

That strategy will seek out “the best methods for sharing spectrum with both military and civilian users”, including network communication companies that cater exclusively to commercial markets, it added. Industry responses are due to DISA by 19 October, the RFI stated.

DSS essentially enables multiple types of mobile networks to operate in a single section of bandwidth. In civilian applications, 4G LTE and 5G networks would be able to receive and transmit data across the same range of spectrum bandwidth, aided by DSS solutions.

A US Air Force Special Operations Weather Technician sends intelligence during a 31 October 2017 field exercise. Pentagon officials are seeking new spectrum bandwidth solutions for 5G communications on civilian and military mobile networks. (US Department of Defense )

The US Department of Defense is soliciting industry input on how Pentagon leaders can further exploi...

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