British communications regulator Ofcom has tapped Cambridge Radio Frequency Services (CRFS) to undertake a heady spectrum mapping project that will enable Ofcom to build a detailed picture of radio spectrum use.
CRFS will use its RFeye real-time spectrum monitoring system to gather the radio spectrum data that will be collected by a small fleet of car-mounted RFeye nodes over a number of months. Phase One should be completed 31 December 2008.
Aside from providing data analysis tools as part of the project, CRFS will host an industry day to get feedback from other stakeholders — mobile phone operators, broadcasters, wireless broadband providers, government agencies, etc. — ahead of developing a business case for the continued deployment of the spectrum monitoring system.
“Ofcom’s objective is to promote the most efficient use of the United Kingdom’s valuable spectrum resource, benefiting consumers by providing access to new services, greater choice and competition. However, it is difficult to be sure that we are optimizing the use of the spectrum without information on its usage and quality in different parts of the country and across different frequency bands. Information from the CRFS system should help us with our plans to introduce market mechanisms in spectrum management and in releasing the commercial value of spectrum in the future,” said Gary Clemo, R&D manager at Ofcom.
“Our RFeye system will enable Ofcom and other spectrum managers, such as the MOD and mobile phone operators, to fully exploit this valuable economic resource. Interference is one the biggest drains on the profitability of mobile phone operators as it stops a large amount of calls from being terminated,” said David Cleevely, chairman and co-founder of CRFS.