A Risk-Informed Interference Assessment of MetSat/LTE Coexistence

IEEE Access, Forthcoming

23 Pages Posted: 31 May 2016 Last revised: 22 Aug 2018

See all articles by Jean Pierre De Vries

Jean Pierre De Vries

University of Colorado at Boulder Law School - Silicon Flatirons Center

Uri Livnat

Federal Communications Commission (FCC)

Susan Tonkin


Date Written: March 19, 2017


Quantitative risk assessment has recently been proposed to assess the impact of a new radio service allocation on incumbents. This paper demonstrates its viability by performing a risk-informed interference assessment in a recent U.S. case: the protection of meteorological satellite (MetSat) earth stations from interference by cellular mobile transmitters. We find that the hazard selected by policy makers (co-channel interference with the receiving antenna at 5⁰ elevation) was not the most severe, and that their worst case approach overlooked more significant risks, notably adjacent band interference. We begin with an inventory of the performance hazards. We survey consequence metrics that quantify the severity of interference, and select the interference protection criteria defined in Recommendation ITU-R SA.1026-4. We then use Monte Carlo modeling to calculate probability distributions of resulting interference due to co-channel and adjacent band transmissions. We identify a co-channel exclusion distance that keeps interference risk below the SA.1026-4 criteria. We show that the binding constraint is not the ITU-R “long-term” interference mode (5° antenna elevation), but rather the “short-term” interference when the elevation is 13°. We provide an extensive sensitivity analysis showing that the propagation modeling, and particularly the choice of clutter model, can have a significant effect on the results. We conclude that quantitative risk assessment yields useful insights for analyzing coexistence. Protection criteria that combine an interfering power level with statistical exceedance limits were essential to our analysis, and we recommend that policy makers adopt statistical service rules more widely to support future risk analysis. Our analysis was limited by the unavailability of baseline values for service metrics, and the lack of transparency in previous studies, notably ITU-R recommendations. We recommend that regulators encourage parties to disclose baseline values and the methods underlying interference criteria and coexistence assessments.

Keywords: cellular phones, clutter, governmental factors, interference, mobile communication, Monte Carlo methods, risk analysis, satellite communication, satellite ground stations

JEL Classification: C02, K23, L59, L96

Suggested Citation

De Vries, Jean Pierre and Livnat, Uri and Tonkin, Susan, A Risk-Informed Interference Assessment of MetSat/LTE Coexistence (March 19, 2017). IEEE Access, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2786758

Jean Pierre De Vries (Contact Author)

University of Colorado at Boulder Law School - Silicon Flatirons Center ( email )

1070 Edinboro Drive
Boulder, CO 80309
United States

Uri Livnat

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) ( email )

445 12th Street SW
Rm. TW-B204
Washington, DC 20554
United States

Susan Tonkin

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

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