5G frequency band competition and battlefield spectrum application

  Spectrum resources are the core resources that promote the development of mobile communications and information industries, and they are also important war resources related to operations in the electromagnetic field.

  Recently, the dispute over frequency bands triggered by the deployment of 5G networks in the United States has attracted widespread attention from the world. The reason is that the US Federal Communications Commission approved Rigato Satellite Communications to use the L-band to meet the commercial use of 5G networks. Previously, the United States focused more on the use of millimeter wave frequency bands (above 6000MHz) to develop 5G, and some high-quality resources in the low- and mid-range frequency bands (below 6000MHz, also known as Sub6G frequency bands) were mainly controlled by the US military. It is not difficult to imagine that the military-civilian frequency band dispute has an influential effect.

  With the rapid development of the mobile Internet and the Internet of Things worldwide, various new services continue to emerge, network traffic and the number of connected terminals have increased dramatically, and future mobile broadband applications will require more spectrum. In particular, the intelligent and digital battlefield requires more precise and optimized spectrum application capabilities, and resource management is particularly important.

The world gives priority to the development of 5G in low and medium frequency bands

  "4G changes life, and 5G changes society." Compared with 4G, the characterization dimension of 5G is more abundant and comprehensive. Many key technical indicators are strongly related to frequency, and the guiding demand for spectrum is more obvious.

  On the one hand, based on existing frequency resources, broadband access technology cannot meet 5G requirements in terms of peak rate and user experience rate, and there is a large gap, which requires expansion of frequency bandwidth to support.

  On the other hand, in order to meet the online needs of users and high-speed mobility, it is necessary to provide good network coverage with the help of low frequency bands, which will inevitably lead to more intense spectrum resource disputes.

  The issue of spectrum allocation is at the core of 5G competition. What kind of spectrum policy to choose and which frequency bands should be prioritized for the development of 5G should be comprehensively considered technology, market, industrial foundation and development direction, international standards and other factors.

  On July 14, 2016, the United States was the first to release a 5G frequency plan, and decided to give priority to the development of 5G in 4 frequency bands, 28GHz, 37GHz, 39GHz, 64GHz~71GHz. The reason is that these millimeter wave frequency bands have the advantages of rich spectrum resources, continuous large bandwidth, and low planning difficulty, which can avoid conflicts with the government and the military. The United States already has good technology accumulation and industrial advantages in the millimeter wave frequency band. high.

  However, in actual construction, the coverage distance of the millimeter wave frequency band is very low, causing operators to invest too much. Although the United States is one of the earliest countries in the world to realize 5G commercialization, its progress in base station construction and network coverage has not reached expectations.

  At present, more than 90 countries, including Russia, Germany, and the United Kingdom, have successively released 5G spectrum plans for the low- and mid-bands, or have auctioned licenses for spectrum resources, choosing to give priority to the development of 5G in the low- and mid-bands. Among them, more than 30 countries have begun formal commercial use.

  Countries such as Japan and South Korea that used the millimeter wave frequency band as the main 5G spectrum resource following the United States are now gradually embarking on the path of emphasizing both millimeter wave and medium and low frequency bands, and even began to focus on the medium and low frequency bands.

  Giving priority to the development of 5G in the low and medium frequency bands has basically become a global consensus.

The battlefield spectrum application faces severe challenges

  Comprehensive, rapid, and accurate battlefield electromagnetic situation awareness is a prerequisite for victory in combat. With the development of 5G, the commercial availability of mobile communication and sensing technology is becoming stronger and stronger, and spectrum resources are increasingly becoming crowded, competitive, and confrontational. Regardless of military or commercial use, the utilization of new frequency band resources has a long way to go.

  In the future battlefield, each entity will become intelligent, requiring ubiquitous interconnection of combat elements scattered in all corners of the battlefield, distributed acquisition of sensor data in all dimensions of the battlefield, online processing of field data and real-time distribution of intelligence, requiring improved globalization Joint combat capability on the battlefield.

  With the widespread use of new phased array radars, high-speed frequency hopping radios, electronic countermeasures jammers, data links, satellite communications, navigation and other electronic equipment in modern warfare, the types of battlefield signals are increasing day by day, the density increases sharply, and the interleaving and aliasing are serious. , The electromagnetic environment is more complicated than ever. Traditional radar reconnaissance, communications reconnaissance, and spectrum monitoring equipment have gradually exposed the shortcomings of single function, insufficient capability, fighting each other, and lack of coordination, and are facing severe challenges.

  The US military first began to understand military operations in the electromagnetic spectrum domain from the perspective of war confrontation, adding tasks such as electromagnetic spectrum management, electromagnetic spectrum control, and electromagnetic combat control. In recent years, new combat concepts such as mosaic warfare and multi-domain warfare have been intertwined and penetrated with the concept of electromagnetic spectrum warfare, giving birth to more new tactics applied on the battlefield. Under the concept of multi-domain operations and flexible decentralized architecture, the US military has formed a concept of verifying electromagnetic spectrum warfare capabilities with the help of "elves" and low-cost drone swarm technology.

  Focusing on future military applications, doing a good job in battlefield spectrum recognition, intelligent management and control, and multi-platform application integration has become the most noteworthy aspect of the military's response to the battlefield spectrum application challenges.

Where does the future battlefield spectrum application go?

  The four tasks of electromagnetic spectrum utilization, management, attack and protection are the main content of future battlefield spectrum applications. Its core is to compete for and use electromagnetic spectrum resources, and realize that battlefield electromagnetic spectrum control plays a key role in the functions of command and control, intelligence, fire strike, adjustment and maneuvering, protection, and operation maintenance in various combat domains.

  ——Improve the cognitive ability of battlefield spectrum resources. Some foreign military believe that the awareness of battlefield spectrum resources has become the primary task of battlefield spectrum applications, and it is also a prerequisite for plan formulation, spectrum management and control, and conflict elimination. For its own frequency equipment, system design, pre-planning, and reasonable allocation can be used to achieve combat integration and organizational coordination. For non-cooperative entities, it is necessary to actively detect cognitive means. Using spectrum cognition theory methods, electromagnetic behavior intelligent perception and threat autonomous identification technology, spectrum learning and reasoning adaptive countermeasure technology, integrated radiation source time, frequency, space, energy and other multi-dimensional information to support the construction of a complete, closed-loop electromagnetic spectrum application loop Road, realize the intelligentization of electromagnetic space equipment. In particular, it aims to enhance the "4 abilities": spectrum environment perception ability, which can autonomously and quickly obtain global spectrum information from the complex electromagnetic environment of the battlefield; learning reasoning ability, according to the perception of spectrum environment changes, rapid autonomous learning, and formation of coordination and feedback with electromagnetic spectrum control And adaptive dynamic process; evaluation and judgment ability, real-time evaluation and feedback of the results produced by spectrum intelligent change; memory storage ability, real-time storage of spectrum sensing data and adjustment parameters.

  ——Improve the ability of intelligent battlefield spectrum management and control. At present, the management of battlefield spectrum in various countries and frequency allocation are basically carried out in the form of fixed frequency allocation, resulting in low spectrum resource utilization, long spectrum planning time, lack of dynamic adjustment capabilities, and easy formation of internal electromagnetic interference in the system. Based on the practices and designs of foreign military forces, the focus of intelligent electromagnetic spectrum management and control is "four-wheel drive": the first is information perception. Utilize the omni-directional, large-depth, and three-dimensional spectrum sensing network to grasp frequency usage in real time, conduct battlefield situation assessment, and formulate comprehensive spectrum management and usage plans. The second is intelligent decision-making. Build a distributed and intelligent spectrum information processing and decision-making network, flexibly and flexibly deal with the complex situation of the battlefield, and respond quickly to changes in the battle situation. The third is dynamic control. According to the principles of network priority, frequency-using equipment, equipment location, forwarding requirements, and forwarding use restrictions, the spectrum is dynamically allocated. The fourth is on-demand services. Provide effective spectrum access for all types of equipment on the battlefield, support the most efficient use of spectrum and access on demand.

  -Improve the ability to combine battlefield spectrum and platform. Electromagnetic space relies on various sensors, communication and weapon systems, and related information activities such as electromagnetic waves and information streams generated by them. It is closely integrated with various sensors and combat platforms. Physical carriers are important bearers for battlefield spectrum applications. For this reason, some military powers have fully considered multi-type battlefield platforms and sensors in the application of future battlefield spectrum to maximize the potential useful signals of the battlefield and obtain multi-dimensional value data. For example, when fighting in a competitive environment with limited mobility, such as ground vehicles, military aircraft, and helicopters, the battlefield spectrum application system is capable of acquiring the information needed to understand the combat space, and through the use of high-altitude balloons, small drones and other new types of operations. The platform further expands the sensor range to a larger rejection area, thereby improving the efficiency of spectrum-based auxiliary decision-making.

  Above: 5G frequency band currently planned internationally.