ARCEP publishes a summary of its public consultation on fixed-satellite service and decides on the organisation of the 3.4-4.2 GHz band

Paris, 19 March 2007

  • The context

In November, ARCEP collected the opinions of all concerned players on the development prospects of fixed-satellite service applications through a consultation. ARCEP received 11 responses to its consultation, and is publishing a summary of it today.

The aim of this consultation was to:

- estimate the needs and uses of the spectrum for fixed-satellite service applications

- evaluate the conditions of sharing between these systems and fixed-satellite service within the framework of the development of future terrestrial high-speed wireless systems

  • The lessons learned from the public consultation

The Ku band is of great interest to the satellite industry. Most players have stated that this frequency band is particularly well suited to certain needs of fixed-satellite service, especially for corporate communications, Internet access via satellite and audiovisual broadcasting services. One of the concerns for the Ku band will reside in the coexistence of fixed service, primarily the infrastructure networks of telecoms operators, and fixed-satellite service.

Congestion on the Ku band should encourage the development of use of the Ka band in coming years. Some contributors felt, however, that the use of the Ka band for non real-time applications would not see strong growth in the short or medium term.

The C band is used for a specific need, that is, serving countries in tropical areas and Overseas territories. Satellite service providers are planning, but did not quantify, a few service development projects. Mobile telecoms operators have expressed strong interest in using this entire band for future high-speed access systems, and mobile in particular.

Finally, sector industry representatives consider that terrestrial access systems and fixed-satellite service earth stations in the 3.6-4.2 GHz band can coexist and suggest frequency or geographical sharing.

  • ARCEP’s conclusions: prospects for fixed-satellite service in the C band

High-speed wireless services are currently the subject of works at the European and Community level aiming to identify the 3.4-3.8 GHz band for high-speed wireless, both roaming and mobile. Future high-speed mobile services (IMT Advanced –"4th generation") will be discussed (point 1.4 of the agenda) at the next World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC), to be held from 22nd October to 16th November 2007 in Geneva, Switzerland. The 3.4-4.2 GHz band could be one of the candidate bands for these services.

Then, in order to optimise spectrum use, in coherence with European (medium term) and global works (long term), and to allow the development of new services:

- For Metropolitan regions, satellite players are invited to use the 3.8-4.2 GHz band for the development of new stations and the extension of existing stations

- The 3.6-3.8 GHz band will be frozen for fixed-satellite service, and ARCEP will study the possibilities of migrating earth stations in the 3.6-3.8 GHz band to the 3.8-4.2 GHz band, as well as of implementing mixed solutions (Ku band, C band) for creating satellite links

ARCEP is also in favour of identifying the entire 3.4-4.2 GHz band for future high-speed mobile terrestrial services (4G) at the next WRC. ARCEP thinks that this identification could include conditions aiming to study the sharing and compatibility of future mobile services and earth stations of fixed-satellite service.

Last, we cannot consider deploying any terrestrial access systems in the Overseas départements or the territorial units of Mayotte and Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon, because of the number of earth stations authorised in the entire 3.6-4.2 GHz band and the current lack of alternative solutions or frequency bands to cover these areas.


Linked documents

Smiley The summary is available to download (pdf (pdf - 144 Ko) - Smiley) Smiley