News From Washington

FCC Initiates Proceeding to Promote Commercial Development of mm-wave Spectrum

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has initiated a proceeding to examine methods to promote the commercial development and growth of spectrum in the 71-76 GHz, 81-86 GHz and 92-95 GHz bands. Non-government users have never before occupied these bands. Specifically, the FCC seeks comments on its proposed rules to allow use of these spectrum bands for a broad range of new fixed wireless services. Potential uses of this spectrum include high speed wireless local area networks, broadband access systems for the Internet, point-to-point communications, and point-to-multipoint communications. These special uses are possible because of the shorter wavelengths, which are about three to five millimeters, and because of other technical characteristics that differentiate the 71-76 GHz, 81-86 GHz and 92-95 GHz bands from other bands.

Currently, this region of the spectrum is essentially undeveloped and available for new uses. Accordingly, the FCC seeks to develop a flexible and streamlined regulatory framework that will encourage innovative uses of the spectrum; accommodate future developments in technology and equipment; promote competition in the communications services, equipment and related markets; and advance the potential sharing between non-Federal Government and Federal Government systems. Additionally, the FCC anticipates that its proposals will encourage the use of technologies developed in military and scientific applications in a broad range of new products and services, such as high speed wireless local area networks and broadband access systems for the Internet.


In July 2000, the Commission held a public forum on possible new uses of the 92-95 GHz band. Several speakers at the forum indicated that due to recent technological developments, new uses of this band are approaching practicality. In addition, in July 2001, Loea Communications Corp. experimented with technology it developed for use of the 71-76 GHz and 81-86 GHz bands. As a result, Loea filed a petition requesting the establishment of service rules for the licensed use of the 71-76 GHz and 81-86 GHz bands on September 10, 2001.

Specifics of the adopted notice:

The Commission seeks comments on the following issues regarding the use of the 71-76 GHz, 81-86 GHz and 92-95 GHz bands:

  • Updating allocations in the 71-76 GHz, 81-86 GHz and 92-95 GHz bands to reflect changes in the international allocations made at the 1987 and 2000 world Radio Conferences;
  • Developing an appropriate band plan for the 71-76 GHz, 81-86 GHz and 92-95 GHz bands;
  • Providing for unlicensed use in some or all of these bands;
  • Authorizing the new licensed services under Part 101 of its Rules and the new unlicensed devices under Part 15 of its Rules;
  • Licensing the spectrum administered under Part 101 by geographic areas, site-based areas or some other scheme.

For more information, contact Michael Marcus at the Office of Engineering and Technology: (202) 418-2418 or

Lockheed Martin Selects Endwave as Supplier for Comanche Radar Program

Endwave announced that it has entered into a multi-million dollar contract with Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire control Co. to design the RF Receiver unit for the Comanche Radar system used in the Boeing RAH-66 Comanche Helicopter. The contract with Lockheed Martin, a primary sub-contractor to The Boeing Co. for the Comanche radar program, calls for Endwave to design the radar receiver unit, and to manufacture and deliver prototype and evaluation units that will be used in qualification trials within the complete radar system.

"We are honored to have been selected by Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control for this important program, particularly at a time when our nation's security is of such a large concern," said Ed Kieble, chief executive officer and president of Endwave Corp. "It is gratifying for Endwave to be able to apply its unique millimeter wave technology, design expertise and manufacturing resources toward the development of this advanced radar system. We are proud to offer our services to a program that will help safeguard the men and women of our armed forces who risk their lives to protect our freedom."

"Endwave proved to be a highly capable and reliable supplier of the Longbow Fire Control Radar (FCR) program," stated Benny Smith, program manager, Comanche FCR, Lockheed Martin Missile and Fire Control. "We are pleased to once again utilize Endwave expertise and extend their role further in the design and production of this critical component for the Comanche Radar system."

The Comanche radar, a derivative of the proven Longbow Fire Control Radar used on the Apache attack helicopter, delivers the same high performance in a streamlined package to support the stealth mission. Its millimeter-wave technology provides unequalled target detection, location, classification and prioritization. The Comanche Radar system also uses the Longbow Hellfire missile for fire-and-forget capability in all weather conditions.

The selection of Endwave for the Comanche Radar program represents an expansion from Endwave's role as a component supplier to Lockheed Martin for the Longbow radar program, under which Endwave designed and continues to produce low noise amplifiers (LNA) for the Longbow Fire Control Radar used on the Apache attack helicopter. Under the Comanche program, Endwave will deliver a higher level of integration, as the RF receiver unit for the Comanche is a LRU (line replaceable unit) that integrates the LNA component with other active components in a complete subsystem assembly.

Raytheon Teams with Lockheed Martin for FAA Air Traffic Control Modernization

Raytheon Co. will join Lockheed Martin's national team to design and develop the next generation En Route Automation Modernization (ERAM) program for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Raytheon will perform as a major subcontractor to Lockheed Martin, along with other air traffic management (ATM) industry leaders such as Computer Sciences Corp., Boeing, Northrop Grumman and Harris Corp.

Raytheon brings to the ERAM team extensive en route air traffic management system experience in the critical areas of flight and surveillance data processing. This experience has been gained through Raytheon's 50-year legacy of ATM system development and most notably its partnerships with the Deutsche Flugsicherung GmbH (DFS) in Germany, NAV CANADA in Canada and the FAA in the US. Raytheon has a long history of developing and introducing advanced open software architectures to its ATM partners that provide efficient and cost-effective long term system growth and evolution. In addition, Raytheon's ATM systems engineering experience, from the current en route back-up channel, or Direct Access Radar Channel (DARC), to the next generation terminal automation system, Standard Terminal Automation Replacement System (STARS), will enable Raytheon to leverage proven technology and engineering processes that are directly applicable to ERAM.

"Raytheon is pleased to perform as a major subcontractor to Lockheed Martin for ERAM and we are confident that the FAA will be getting a world class team to provide a solution for modernization of the world's most complex en route ATM system," said Steve Teel, vice president of Business Development for Raytheon's Command and Control, Communications and Information Systems. In addition, Lockheed Martin will join the Raytheon Standard Terminal Automation Replacement System (STARS) team. As a subcontractor to Raytheon, Lockheed Martin will apply its expertise in high density TRACON operations to assist in the transition of Common ARTS to STARS at very large TRACON facilities.

Bob Eckel, vice president of Raytheon Air Traffic Management Systems, said, "We believe that this partnership with Lockheed Martin will leverage the best capabilities of both companies to offer the FAA effective solutions for ERAM and STARS, bridging the terminal and en route airspace. Lockheed Martin's addition to the STARS team will ensure timely and safe transition of the large high density TRACON facilities from the existing automation system to STARS."