Full Spectrum, a leading developer of fourth generation wireless equipment for utilities and public safety agencies, announced today that its FullMAX software defined radios are ready to leverage the new TV “White Space” frequencies being made available by the FCC. TV “White Spaces” when combined with other low band licensed frequencies offer utilities a robust range of alternatives for wide area smart grid communications.
For the past three years, Microsoft, Google and others have lobbied the F.C.C. to make these newly vacated frequencies available for innovative data communications’ networks. TV “white space” frequencies were created when television broadcasters completed the transition from analog to digital transmission in 2009. TV broadcasters vacated numerous frequencies, freeing‐up a wide range of low band spectrum for new uses, including private networks for smart grid communications. These vacated frequencies are ideal for utilities because wireless technologies that use low band frequencies require substantially less infrastructure to deploy, have a much longer range than microwave frequencies and can penetrate physical obstructions including walls and trees. Full Spectrum’s highly adaptable, software controlled radios are poised to take advantage of these new frequencies and can be deployed at 1/20th the cost of any comparable solution. “While other companies have been testing one‐off, experimental prototypes in TV white spaces, we have a commercially ready platform”, stated Kantor. “Our software defined radios are designed to work in any frequency from 40 MHz to 958 MHz. This range includes the TV “white spaces” as well as all licensed and unlicensed bands in between. We use software to accommodate the different FCC rules including different transmit power levels and interference avoidance.”
“A core advantage of the FullMAX platform is its ability to work in licensed, high power, low band frequencies and the unlicensed TV white spaces and 900 MHz bands. Our customers can transmit mission critical smart grid data over the licensed bands and less mission critical video applications over the TV white spaces. Licensed frequencies have much higher allowable transmit power with coverage up to 20 miles from a base station tower. In TV white spaces, “FullMAX can transmit up to six times the range of other unlicensed technologies”, stated Kantor.
Over the past several months, Full Spectrum has announced major milestones including the deployment of its technology by Sioux Valley Energy in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, creation of the Smart Grid Wireless Connectivity Center in College Station, Texas and the availability of a private wide area network in Washington DC for utilities and public safety.