Geolocation databases

This page provides historical remarks and current status of CEPT activities related to geo-location database approach

Background and relevant ECC Deliverables

Geo-location is an approach where device determines their location and make use of a geo-location database to obtain information on technical and operational conditions of spectrum usage  at their location.

This approach was first discussed in the context of white space device in the Project Team (PT) SE43 during 2011-2012. Following ECC deliverables were developed since 2011:

  • ECC Report 159 ‘Technical and operational requirements for the possible operation of cognitive radio systems in the ‘white spaces’ of the frequency band 470-790 MHz;
  • ECC Report 186;'Technical and operational requirements for the operation of white space devices under geo-location approach'
  • ECC Report 236 Guidance for national implementation of a regulatory framework for TV WSD using geolocation databases 

In the course of the preparations of the ECC Report 236, it was decided to collect and maintain information related to practice of database usage in various countries in other regions (read more here).

The geo-location database approach was assessed in various CEPT Project Teams with the view to foster coexistence between different services and applications. 

Current situation in CEPT

PT FM 44 (satellite communications) studied usage of geo-location database approach to enhance the coexistence between the Fixed Service (FS) and uncoordinated FSS earth stations in the band 17.7-19.7 GHz.  Information extracted from geo-location database allows satellite operators and satellite service providers to identify the frequencies at which the receivers of FSS earth stations would not be subject to interference from Fixed Service links at a given location, based on knowledge of FS deployment. As a result of this study FM44 developed ECC Report 241 containing information from administrations on national FS frequency assignments in its Annex. As per Decides 6 of ERC/DEC(00)07, administrations are invited to provide FS assignment information to the ECO. Relevant information sources from administrations on national FS frequency assignments are available here (this table will be maintained by the ECO). 

FM44 in their work collaborated with participants of the FP7 Project CoRaSat (https://cordis.europa.eu/project/rcn/105431_en.html) which aimed at investigating, developing, and demonstrating cognitive radio techniques in satellite communication systems for spectrum sharing.

Short Range Device Maintenance Group  is assessing requirements for future cognitive radio enabled SRDs. The geolocation approach is analysed from the technical feasibility view point, demand perspective, investment requirements, the level of technical complexity involved and the long term predictability of the spectrum access. Information from potential stakeholder and interested parties in the SRD community will be considered as well. This is part of the activities under the permanent mandate to CEPT on SRDs, within the sixth update of the EC Decision for SRDs.

Information related to geolocation database regulations (TV WSD) outside of Europe

In the course of the preparations of the ECC Report 236, it was decided to collect and maintain information related to practices of database usage in various countries in other regions. ECO was tasked to make  a survey regarding developments outside Europe in the field of TVWS regulation. The Survey includes information on the situation in Canada, Japan, Singapore, South Africa, and the USA.

One of the reasons to provide this survey via the web is that the situation outside Europe is still under construction and the various regulatory frameworks are not stable yet. Another finding worth to mention is that the survey illustrates the fact that different circumstances indeed lead to different implementations and even different regulatory approaches. The webpage of Project Team FM53 can be found here



Updated: 19 April 2023, 10:59