Spectrum licensing regimes for point-to-point microwave links in the Americas 07 June 21 Alexandra Contreras Flores

Cullen International’s latest research in the Americas focuses on how regulators assign spectrum for microwave links in bands above 6 GHz, large bandwidth bands used by telecommunications networks to substitute for fibre lines.

Most regulators in the Americas assign spectrum for microwave links on an individual link basis, requiring operators to request multiple licences where their plans include several different links. However, in Mexico, spectrum for microwave links use is assigned in blocks for a certain geographic area or nationwide. In Brazil and Chile, regulators can assign spectrum for microwave links either through individual licences or through a public tender of spectrum blocks.

Telecommunications networks use microwave links as point-to-point communications lines. For example, such links are used in Canada for backhaul from mobile base stations to the backbone network or also as part of the trunk backbone network.

Microwave links can coexist with other services in different spectrum bands. Therefore, some regulators, including those in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Mexico and the US, have defined specific rules on the technical requirements for point-to-point microwave links, and the associated channelling and licensing regimes.

Several countries have opened or are considering to open the 6 GHz band (5925–7125 MHz) for unlicensed use. Regulators and ministries have established (or proposed) power limits to allow co-existence with microwave links and other incumbent services in the band.

This new Americas Spectrum benchmark shows the spectrum bands that can be used by point-to-point microwave links and the related licensing regime.

To access the full benchmark, please click on "Access the full content" or on “Request Access”, in case you are not subscribed to our Americas Spectrum Service.


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