FCC Proposes Expansion of Short-Range Radar Operation

In an effort to support the growth of short-range, state-of-the-art radar technologies, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has adopted new rules that expand the legal operating band.

According to a Report and Order, the new rules will allow the deployment of unlicensed field disturbance sensors (a kind of radar device) to operate in the 60 GHz band. Field disturbance sensors are increasingly being used in a variety of important applications, including sensors that alert users to children that have been left in dangerously hot motor vehicles, and mobility and health devices that can detect hand gestures and respiratory functions.

The 60 GHz band has traditionally been available for unlicensed operation of indoor/outdoor communication devices based on the WiGig standard, as well as wireless local area networking devices. Prior to the issuance of its Report and Order, the FCC has issued waivers of its rules in selected cases. Allowing the use of the expanded band range is expected to foster the deployment of additional devices that leverage the benefits of field disturbance sensors and speed the introduction of new and advanced radar-based devices to market.

Read the FCC’s Report and Order on expanding short-range radar operations.

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