IEEE Publishes 802.22 Standard for Wireless Regional Area Networks

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The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), world’s largest professional association for advancing technology, has published the IEEE 802.22 standard for wireless regional area networks (WRANs). The new standard IEEE 802.22 systems will provide secure high-speed broadband access to wide regional areas around the world and bring reliable and secure high-speed communications to under-served and un-served communities.

This new standard for WRAN takes advantage of the favorable transmission characteristics of the VHF and UHF TV bands to provide broadband wireless access over a large area up to 100 km from the transmitter. According to IEEE, each WRAN will deliver up to 22 Mbps per channel without interfering with reception of existing TV broadcast stations, using the so-called white spaces between the occupied TV channels (http://www.ieee802.org/22/).

This technology is especially useful for serving less densely populated areas, such as rural areas, and developing countries where most vacant TV channels can be found.

IEEE 802.22 incorporates advanced cognitive radio capabilities including dynamic spectrum access, incumbent database access, accurate geolocation techniques, spectrum sensing, regulatory domain dependent policies, spectrum etiquette, and coexistence for optimal use of the available spectrum.

The IEEE 802.22 Working Group started its work following the notice of inquiry issued by the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on unlicensed operation in the TV broadcast bands.

The charter of IEEE 802.22, the working group on WRANs, under the PAR approved by the IEEE-SA Standards Board is to develop a standard for a cognitive radio-based PHY/MAC/air_interface for use by license-exempt devices on a non-interfering basis in spectrum that is allocated to the TV broadcast service.


Ashok Bindra is a veteran writer and editor with more than 25 years of editorial experience covering RF/wireless technologies, semiconductors and power electronics. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Rich Steeves
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