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article imageNew IEEE WiFi Standard a Revolution for Rural Internet Users

By Vincent Sobotka     Aug 8, 2011 in Technology
The evolution of wireless networking is about to experience a dramatic leap. A recently approved standard will allow wireless transmissions to become faster, farther, and much more attainable in rural areas.
Performance expectations for devices that provide wireless internet, or WiFi, have recently taken a dramatic leap.
The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) has released their newest Wireless Networking Standard, 802.22 Wireless Regional Area Networks (WRAN). Many drafts of the IEEE standard most widely used today, 802.11 Local Area Networks (LAN), contain characteristics inherited by WRAN.
802.22 is revolutionary, particularly for residents of rural and scarcely populated areas currently inaccessible by broadband transmissions, as WRAN broadcasts on the same frequencies occupied by analog television. The U.S. government's recent mandate to reallocate high-volume television broadcasts to a narrower spectrum of frequencies, enabling transmission to digital receivers, gave the IEEE an opportune frequency band for a new wireless networking standard.
This means that a WiFi-capable device will be able to transmit a signal roughly the same length as a sophisticated television station, which is approximately 62 miles. A single WRAN base station would be able to cover 12,000 square miles at an impressive rate of 22 megabits per second (Mbps).
The IEEE issued the press the following statement regarding the802.22 standard:
IEEE 802.22TM-2011 Standard for Wireless Regional Area Networks in TV Whitespaces Completed
PISCATAWAY, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–IEEE, the world’s largest professional association advancing technology for humanity, today announced that it has published the IEEE 802.22TM standard. IEEE 802.22 systems will provide 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 Wireless Regional Area Networks (WRANs) 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. 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. 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 on unlicensed operation in the TV broadcast bands.
Additional information on the standard can be found at the IEEE 802.22 WG page. To purchase the standard, visit the IEEE Standards Store.
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