SPARK Microsystems, a Canadian fabless semiconductor company specializing in next-generation ultra-wideband (UWB), and UWB Alliance, an international non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion and growth of the UWB industry, have initiated a joint effort to test the coexistence and aggregation capabilities of UWB technology in environments where other UWB or other wireless protocols and radio devices are in use. This first phase includes testing the interoperability and compatibility of a pair of UWB technologies operating in a single environment simultaneously with UWB transceivers from SPARK Microsystems and other industry players.

“Generating empirical data through scientific testing is critical for understanding how UWB devices can coexist with other devices,” said Benjamin Rolfe, CTO, UWB Alliance. “The testing we are doing with SPARK Microsystems will enable the industry to progress forward on collaborative coexistence strategies that optimize spectrum sharing while minimizing interference. It will also provide standards-making bodies with factual documentation to aid in amending or modifying spectrum rules, allowing more UWB-enabled solutions to come to market.”

Preliminary results of phase one with multiple UWB devices indicate generally good coexistence performance, with the tested devices showing no measurable performance impact from other interfering UWB devices. Testing of multiple devices in aggregation was also conducted. Phase two will expand the coexistence testing to include UWB with U-NII devices in 6 GHz (802.11ax). The full results will become available shortly after the conclusion of the testing.

“SPARK Microsystems and UWB Alliance together recognize the importance of coexistence with other wireless devices for widespread market adoption of UWB technology across various markets such as consumer, healthcare, connected cars, smart home and smart factory,” said Frederic Nabki, co-founder and CTO, SPARK Microsystems. “We anticipate the results of the testing will educate and inform cross-industry stakeholders on how UWB uses the spectrum in aggregation while coexisting with other radio devices.”