Telecommunications

White House backs $400M push for 5G research

large broadcasting antenna

The Obama administration announced a $400 million initiative to support advanced experimentation on next-generation wireless networks via a new program management office at the National Science Foundation.

The Advanced Wireless Research Initiative was announced on July 15, the day after the Federal Communications Commission voted to make wireless spectrum bands above 24 GHz available for 5G commercial use. That spectrum will allow the ultra-high-speed, high-bandwidth and rapid-response wireless connectivity needed for emerging 5G applications.

NSF's Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering will support the work of the Platforms for Advanced Wireless Research Project Office, which will assume responsibility for design, development and deployment of a set of advanced wireless research platforms.

NSF said it would provide more than $50 million toward the effort beginning in fiscal 2017, including $5 million in the next five years to establish the project office.

The private sector is contributing as well. A group of carriers, device and equipment manufacturers, and trade associations has offered more than $35 million toward building test beds.

About the Author

Mark Rockwell is a senior staff writer at FCW, whose beat focuses on acquisition, the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Energy.

Before joining FCW, Rockwell was Washington correspondent for Government Security News, where he covered all aspects of homeland security from IT to detection dogs and border security. Over the last 25 years in Washington as a reporter, editor and correspondent, he has covered an increasingly wide array of high-tech issues for publications like Communications Week, Internet Week, Fiber Optics News, tele.com magazine and Wireless Week.

Rockwell received a Jesse H. Neal Award for his work covering telecommunications issues, and is a graduate of James Madison University.

Click here for previous articles by Rockwell. Contact him at mrockwell@fcw.com or follow him on Twitter at @MRockwell4.


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