UAS control spectrum: industry players want to be part of the solution
Dec 17, 2020 by Toby Youell


As Unmanned Aircraft Systems grow in capabilities and popularity, it is inevitable that their control will have to be integrated into Air Traffic Management (ATM) systems. The problem is that current systems are designed for manned aircraft that are limited in number and that communicate using voice.

The need for UAS Air Traffic Management (UTM) solutions is clear, but there is no clarity about the solution. Instead, different countries and regions are developing their own systems, while different industries are investigating the problem as a business opportunity. Mobile operators and satellite operators in particular are looking to demonstrate how they can be part of the solution. These typically use spectrum that is already allocated to the mobile or fixed-satellite service.

These different concepts of UTM, and what it means for spectrum, are explained in a new research note, Unmanned aircraft systems: Traffic management systems and their spectrum requirements. The note is available to Spectrum Research Service subscribers as part of our dossier on Unmanned Aircraft Systems.