Thursday, October 14, 2010

NIST, NTIA Seek Collaborators for Emergency Communications Demo Network

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NIST, NTIA Seek Collaborators for Emergency Communications Demo Network

From the 10/13/10 issue of the NIST Tech Beat:

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the
National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) are
seeking partners in the telecommunications industry to help create a
demonstration broadband communications network for the nation's
emergency services agencies.

The demonstration network, currently being developed by the joint
NIST-NTIA Public Safety Communications Research (PSCR) program, will
provide a common site for manufacturers, carriers, and public safety
agencies to test and evaluate advanced broadband communications
equipment and software tailored specifically to the needs of emergency
first responders. The network will use a portion of the 700 megahertz
(MHz) radio frequency spectrum freed up by last year's transition of
U.S. broadcast television from analog to digital technologies (see
NIST Tech Beat, Dec. 15, 2009).

Alcatel-Lucent is the first vendor of public safety broadband
equipment to formally join the PSCR demonstration network project,
signing a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with
NIST and NTIA in September, 2010. The two agencies hope that other
companies will follow suit, creating a truly multi-vendor environment
for testing and evaluating the demonstration network, as well as the
eventual building of the system. Partners may participate in many
ways, such as donating equipment, providing access to infrastructure
or supporting tests.

Alcaltel-Lucent has supplied the demonstration network with Long Term
Evolution (LTE) Bandclass 14 equipment. LTE is the technology chosen
by the public safety community to be used in the 700 MHz band
(Bandclass 14) allocated to it by the Federal Communications
Commission.

Vendors and other telecommunications companies wishing to become CRADA
partners on the demonstration network project may contact Dereck Orr
at (303) 497-5400, dereck.orr@nist.gov, or Jeff Bratcher at (303)
497-4610, jbratcher@its.bldrdoc.gov, for information.

The PSCR program is a partnership of the NIST Law Enforcement
Standards Office and the NTIA's Institute for Telecommunication
Sciences. PSCR provides objective technical support—research,
development, testing and evaluation—in order to foster nationwide
public safety communications interoperability. More information is
available on the PSCR Web site.

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