Closing date for comments: April 1, 2022
Closing date for reply comments: April 25, 2022
- Legislative mandate
- Proposed technical changes to site data element requirements
- Clarifying site data upload requirements and streamlining the upload process
- Submitting comments
- Obtaining copies
1. Through the release of this document, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED), on behalf of the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry (the Minister), is hereby initiating a consultation on proposed amendments to the requirements for spectrum licensees to upload associated technical information related to radiocommunication installations (referred to hereafter in the consultation as “site data”) as required by conditions of licence. Currently spectrum licences that require the submission of data refer to section 5.11 and annex B of Client Procedures Circular CPC-2-1-23, Licensing Procedure for Spectrum Licences for Terrestrial Services (CPC-2-1-23). This consultation proposes: a number of changes to the current requirements that are detailed in CPC-2-1-23, issue 4; new requirements to be set out in a new CPC; and amendments to the related conditions of licence of affected spectrum licences.
2. Legislative mandate
2. The Minister, through the Department of Industry Act, the Radiocommunication Act and the Radiocommunication Regulations, with due regard to the objectives of the Telecommunications Act, is responsible for spectrum management in Canada. As such, the Minister is responsible for developing national goals and policies for spectrum utilization and for ensuring effective management of the radio frequency spectrum resource.
3. Under subparagraph 5(1)(a)(i.1) of the Radiocommunication Act, the Minister may issue spectrum licences in respect of the utilization of specified radio frequencies within a defined geographic area. The Minister may fix the terms and conditions of any such licence, and amend the terms and conditions of any spectrum licence. Furthermore, the Minister may, under subparagraphs 5(1)(h) and (i), require spectrum licence holders to disclose such information as is deemed appropriate respecting the present and proposed use of radio apparatus, as well as any material changes to the aforementioned information.
4. The introduction of fifth generation (5G) technologies will support Canadian innovation, enabling Canada to be at the forefront of digital development and adoption through the creation and strengthening of a world-class wireless infrastructure. By implementing policies and practices that reflect global trends, emerging 5G standards and the evolving equipment ecosystem, ISED seeks to ensure that its spectrum management activities anticipate and respond to the growing need for spectrum for 5G services.
5. Recent and anticipated spectrum auctions, such as in the 3500 MHz band, 3800 MHz and mmWave (26 GHz, 28 GHz, 38 GHz) bands, will generate a significant increase in new spectrum licences available to enable the deployment of advanced wireless communication technologies. This significant increase in licensing will, in turn, require appropriate database systems for capturing and reporting on licensing deployments, for both ISED and licensees.
6. The release of new spectrum made available for 5G is also anticipated to lead to more deployments of radio equipment, particularly antenna systems, given the possible new use cases being enabled through the advancement of technology, and lower latency due to larger bandwidths. These developments are anticipated to cause a densification of existing networks and, in some bands, a deployment of small cells that will largely exceed existing deployments. Interference management and coordination will be more important than ever for managing the high capacity, highly reliable wireless networks on which Canadians have come to depend. Effective coordination in the 5G context requires ISED to collect and publish relevant, accurate and timely site data to support well informed and strategic deployment decisions to the benefit of all stakeholders.
7. Advancements in technology related to 5G have also led to new complexities and considerations in the radiocommunication equipment ecosystem. As equipment capabilities evolve, and new and innovative technologies are introduced such as multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) active antenna system (AAS) technologies, the types of measurements and information collected by ISED must also evolve to ensure that appropriate data is made available to support coordination of systems.
8. In order to adapt to the changing environment and plan for future developments, ISED is making efforts to adopt new licensing tools, methods, and technologies to assist with spectrum management. Initiatives like dynamic spectrum access in television and 6 GHz bands are examples of ISED’s commitment to finding new solutions for effective spectrum management, and can function as the basis for other similar methods of spectrum management. For similar systems to succeed, ISED will require robust and accurate data to ensure its effectiveness and enable spectrum access for new services while maintaining access and protection for existing services.
9. In this context, ISED collects and publishes technical information on spectrum licences through its online Spectrum Management System (SMS). The SMS is ISED’s key repository of data on the location and specifications of equipment, which spectrum licensees have deployed at their installations.
10. Currently, section 5.11 of CPC-2-1-23 contains the procedures licensees must follow, as a condition of licence, with regard to the submission of technical information associated to their sites. Sites are the radiocommunication installations at each location where the licensee has deployed. Section 5.11 of the CPC states that ISED “requires technical information associated with radiocommunication installations covered by the spectrum licence in order to carry out certain spectrum management responsibilities.” The list of site data elements, which licensees are required to provide, is detailed in annex B of CPC-2-1-23.
11. Until recently, only terrestrial spectrum licensees have uploaded associated site data. However, the recent Consultation on Updates to the Licensing and Fee Framework for Earth Stations and Space Stations in Canada (Earth Station Consultation) proposes the use of spectrum licences to authorize earth stations. Once a decision has been issued on that consultation, it may be appropriate for licensees to upload associated site data for some types of earth stations in certain frequency bands.
12. The information collected through the submission of site data supports ISED’s spectrum management and policy development, including:
- compliance verifications with licence terms and conditions
- interference investigations carried out following a complaint
- international coordination efforts related to interference along shared borders
- spectrum management policy decisions
13. Licensees also use the site data available on the SMS website to facilitate inter-operator domestic and international coordination, as well as tower and site sharing between licensees, as per the requirements set out under CPC-2-0-17, Conditions of Licence for Mandatory Roaming and Antenna Tower and Site Sharing and to Prohibit Exclusive Site Arrangements.
14. With these considerations, ISED is proposing several measures to modernize the site data requirements currently contained in section 5.11 and annex B of CPC-2-1-23. Section 4 of this consultation seeks comments on a number of proposed updates to the list of mandatory site data elements. In total, ISED proposes the removal of 7 site data elements, the modification of 21 existing site data elements and the addition of 15 new site data elements. A summary list of the proposed changes is also provided in annex A of this consultation. Section 5 of this consultation proposes changes meant to improve the overall clarity, efficiency and enforceability of site data element requirements. ISED proposes that the new requirements and the provisions of section 5.11 of CPC-2-1-23 be outlined in a new CPC, which deals specifically with the requirements needed for spectrum licensees to submit technical information on stations, site data elements and networks. The associated conditions of licence that require the submission of this data would be updated to refer to the new CPC. The list of affected conditions of licence can be found in annex B of this consultation and on the Conditions of licence/Appendices webpage.
4. Proposed technical changes to site data element requirements
15. ISED proposes to make a series of modifications to the requirements currently listed as mandatory site data elements in annex B of CPC-2-1-23. These changes, listed in annex A of this consultation, are intended to ensure that the data provided by licensees remains relevant, and reflects both current and emerging innovations in radiocommunication technologies. These proposed changes are also meant to:
- consider the diversity of radiocommunication installations that presently exist
- adapt data collection to reflect the implementation of 5G networks, MIMO and AAS technologies
- facilitate mandatory site sharing between licensees
- add further clarity to certain existing fields
16. For new and existing site data elements that include the use of a closed list of possible valid data entries (i.e. a structured data entry field), ISED may revise these lists in the future to account for new and emerging technology, as it does for all structured data fields.
4.1 Facilitating site identification and validation during field operations
17. In order to facilitate the visual identification of sites during field operations, and differentiate between individual installations in dense areas, ISED proposes the introduction of the site data elements Cell ID, Physical Cell ID, Site Type Code and Site Structure Code. These new data elements would support field operations, as well as activities related to ISED’s role in interference management.
18. The introduction of the Cell ID and Physical Cell ID data elements is meant to facilitate processes involving sites that provide mobile services. Regarding Cell ID, licensees would input the full 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) Cell Global Identity (2G/3G “CGI”, 4G E-UTRAN “ECGI”, or 5G NR “NCGI”), which is a unique series of decimal numbers that identifies each radio station including the following identifiers:
Public Land Mobile Network (PLMN) Identifier, which includes
- the Mobile Country Code (MCC) and Mobile Network Code (MNC)
- the Location Area Code or Tracking Area Code identifiers (LAC in 3G and TAC in 4G/5G systems)
- the Cell Identifier Number (CI in 3G, ECI in 4G and NCI in 5G systems)
19. Regarding Physical Cell ID, licensees would indicate the decimal numbers representing the physical-layer cell identity (PCI) of the cell in 4G/5G systems.
20. As ISED is modernizing its field equipment, Cell ID and Physical Cell ID will facilitate interference investigations, making it easier for ISED to link with site data, and better distinguish among multiple installations at a site. These data elements will facilitate the detection of discrepancies between uploaded data and field sensor reports, and allow ISED to better manage commercial mobile bands in high-density areas.
21. In Site Type Code, licensees would indicate the broad category of site associated with the radiocommunication installation using the following code to indicate the type of site:
- U: underground (e.g. mine, subway)
- O: outdoor (e.g. purpose build tower, rooftop)
- I: indoor (e.g. stadium, inside of corporate building)
22. With the addition of this new data element, ISED also proposes to limit the requirement to report on Structure Height to outdoor sites only. Structure Height will be primarily recorded to facilitate the exchange of information between licensees for purposes of site and tower sharing.
23. Site Structure Code would further specify the type of structure in use at the site. ISED proposes that licensees indicate the site structure type using the following codes:
- T: purpose-built tower
- R: building roof-top
- P: light, electrical or utility pole
- S: water tower or farm silo
- F: other street furniture
- M: transportable
- O: other
24. In support of ISED’s radio frequency propagation modeling, minor modifications are also proposed to the data entry range for Tx (transmission) Antenna Height and Rx (reception) Antenna Height. In order to better capture data related to underground site types, ISED proposes that the entry of negative values be permitted in Tx and Rx Antenna Height in order to account for the depth below ground level in underground sites. In the event that a licensee does not know the exact depth of a site underground, provision will be made to provide a generic input to this effect. Licensees would still be required to provide exact antenna heights for outdoor and indoor sites.
25. Finally, ISED also proposes to adjust the standardized accepted data format of Longitude and Latitude coordinates. Licensees would be expected to supply coordinates in decimal degree format, rather than the degrees-minutes-seconds format.
4.2 Facilitating identification and compliance of on-site radio technology
26. Evolving radio technology has led to radio models that are capable of supporting a number of different technologies. As a result, the Radio Model Number is no longer sufficient on its own for ISED to reliably derive the specific mode of operation of the technology being used at a site (3G, 4G, 5G-NSA, broadband, satellite, etc.).
27. For this reason, ISED proposes the introduction of a Radio Technology data element. This is intended to facilitate assessment of how radio equipment or apparatus is operated in the field, as well as compliance with ISED's certified Radio Equipment List (REL) database and licensed operations. ISED proposes that licensees input one of the following options to indicate the mode of operation (provisioning) at the site:
- GSM (2G/GPRS/EDGE service)
- CDMA/AMRC (2G CDMA)
- HSPA (3G CDMA)
- LTE (4G)
- 5GDSS (4G-5G Dynamic Spectrum Sharing sites)
28. ISED also proposes that licensees be required to provide their Radio Certification Number, as issued and listed in ISED’s REL. This will enable the linking of site data to the REL database to facilitate regulatory actions and internal analysis work.
29. In order to simplify or clarify ISED’s data entry expectations of licensees, some minor changes are also proposed for Tx and Rx Radio Model Number, Tx and Rx Radio Manufacturer Codes and Tx and Rx Antenna Manufacturing Codes.
30. ISED proposes to rename the Tx and Rx Radio Model Number data elements as Tx and Rx Radio HVIN (hardware version identification number) to reinforce a standard syntax for radio model information. Licensees would be expected to indicate the HVIN of radio transmitters certified by ISED unless operating a radio without an HVIN from ISED, in which case the manufacturer's radio model number should be provided.
31. ISED also proposes to replace the current system of manufacturer codes used in the Tx and Rx Radio Manufacturer Code data elements and the Tx and Rx Antenna Manufacturing Code data elements, by alternative coding systems. The purpose of this change is to develop a system that will better match the pace of change in the radio vendor ecosystem, and ensure that all authorized equipment manufacturers can be captured by the relevant site data elements.
32. One example of an alternative coding system for the Tx and Rx Radio Manufacturer Code data elements could be ISED’s Certification and Engineering Bureau (CEB) company number, which can easily be found at the beginning of the certification number on the label of any existing equipment, or by looking up a licensee’s equipment in the Radio Equipment Search tool provided on the Spectrum Management System (SMS) website. For Tx and Rx Antenna Manufacturer Code, a new data extract option would be added to the SMS Authorization Data Extract available on the SMS website containing antenna manufacturer information. Licensees would be expected to use the codes provided in this data extract. For all four of the manufacturer code fields, licensees would also have the option of entering an “is-exempt” code to account for instances where licensees are permitted to use uncertified equipment.
4.3 Adapting site data collection requirements to the deployment of 5G networks and MIMO technology
33. Given the increase in deployments of MIMO AAS technology with beam-forming and beam-steering capabilities for 5G networks, a number of changes and additions to data elements have become necessary in order for ISED to conduct interference analyses and determine compliance with conditions of licence as defined in section 5.13 of CPC-2-1-23.
34. In this context, ISED proposes the introduction of Antenna Type Code, Number of Tx and Rx Antenna, as well as modifications to Transmitter Output Power and Tx and Rx Antenna Gain. ISED also proposes to introduce Tx Antenna Vertical Beam and Tx Antenna Horizontal Beam as complimentary to the data provided by Tx Antenna Elevation Angle and Tx Antenna Azimuth for the purposes of interference analysis. Some of the information required in the proposed new data elements above is partially collected during the certification process undertaken by the CEB. However, the information collected during the certification process represents the full range and capacity of the equipment, and does not always reflect actual use in the field, making these additions necessary. ISED also proposes Time Division Duplex (TDD) Special Subframe as an optional field. Finally, ISED proposes that licensees report on Downlink Resource Allocation in conformity with GL-01, Guidelines for the Measurement of Radio Frequency Fields at Frequencies From 3 kHz to 300 GHz.
35. In order to accommodate a range of different technologies, certain fields will require the input of slightly different data depending on the type of system being reported (AAS or non-AAS). Information requirements are summarized in table 1, for both transmitters and receivers as appropriate, and a full description of each data element follows below.
|Proposed field name||User input non-AAS||User input AAS|
|Number of Tx Antenna||SISO: 1 |
MIMO: Number of antennas
|Number of antenna elements|
|Transmitter TCP-TRP||Total conducted power in dBm||Total radiated power in dBm|
|Antenna Gain||Gain of the transmitter antenna in dBi||Gain of the individual antenna element in dBi|
|Antenna Vertical Beam||Half-power (3 dB) beam width in the vertical plane of the main lobe for the transmitter antenna in degrees||Vertical beam steering angle range (difference between the maximum and minimum values) in degrees|
|Antenna Horizontal Beam||Half-power (3 dB) beam width in the horizontal plane of the main lobe for the transmitter antenna in degrees||Horizontal beam steering angle range (difference between the maximum and minimum values) in degrees|
36. Antenna Type Code would require licensees to specify the type of antenna associated with a radio installation. Licensees would select from three options:
- active antenna systems (AAS)
- non-AAS correlated (NAC)
- non-AAS uncorrelated (NAU)
37. Correlated and uncorrelated refers to the way the signals are phase-aligned or independent as specified in applicable Standard Radio System Plans (SRSP) such as SRSP-518, Technical Requirements in the Bands 617-652 MHz, 663-698 MHz, 698756 MHz and 777-787 MHz and SRSP-520, Technical Requirements for Fixed and/or Mobile Systems, Including Flexible Use Broadband Systems, in the Band 3450-3650 MHz. ISED recognises that non-AAS have the capabilities to operate in a correlated mode, uncorrelated mode, or a hybrid mode between correlated and uncorrelated. ISED proposes that licensees deploying a hybrid mode would be expected to list their systems as operating in a correlated mode.
38. Licensees would also be required to specify the Number of Tx Antenna and Number of Rx Antenna. In a single-input and single-output (SISO) system the value should be set to "1"; and in traditional antenna diversity and MIMO systems the value should be set to "2" or more. In MIMO systems, licensees should specify the number of antenna elements in the antenna panel.
39. In support of AAS deployments, ISED also proposes to rename and modify the Transmitter Output Power data element to Transmitter TCP-TRP. This change is intended to clarify the power value to be entered for AAS and non-AAS respectively. For AAS equipment, the total radiated power (TRP), as defined in SRSP-520, should be provided as there is no port from which to directly measure the conducted power of the equipment. For non-AAS equipment, the total conducted power (TCP) should be provided, representing the signal conducted across all antennas. ISED also proposes to modify the unit of measurement in which the data is provided, from Watts to dBm.
40. ISED proposes a small modification to Tx and Rx Antenna Gain. These data elements would remain the same for omni and directional antennas, but in AAS, the gain of the antenna elements should be provided.
41. Current equipment options are now capable of beam-steering over a range in the vertical and horizontal planes. In order to capture deployments accurately, ISED proposes to have licensees record the Tx Antenna Vertical Beam and the Tx Antenna Horizontal Beam. Tx Antenna Vertical Beam will complement the existing Tx Antenna Elevation Angle data element. In non-AAS, this field would indicate the half-power (3 dB) beamwidth, in degrees, in the vertical plane of the main lobe for the transmitter antenna. In case of AAS beam steering systems, it would represent the beam elevation angle range (maximum to minimum), in degrees, around the mean value specified by Tx Antenna Elevation Angle. Tx Antenna Horizontal Beam would act as a complement to the existing Tx Antenna Azimuth data element, for the same reasons noted above. In non-AAS, this field would indicate the half-power (3 dB) beam width in the horizontal plane of the main lobe for the transmitter antenna. In case of AAS beam steering systems, it would represent the horizontal beam steering angle range (maximum to minimum) around the mean value specified by Tx Antenna Azimuth.
42. In recognition of the use of site data by licensees in their frequency coordination activities, ISED proposes to introduce an optional site data element to facilitate TDD systems synchronization. The purpose of this field would be to facilitate frequency coordination and enable operators to synchronize TDD operations in order to mitigate interference. Noting the differences in data required for TDD synchronization between 4G LTE and 5G NR systems, ISED welcomes proposals on which fields would be needed and the best format to collect the data that would be most useful to operators, such as subframe or special subframe identifiers, sub-carrier spacing, or other data that would facilitate coordination.
43. Finally, ISED proposes to collect the Downlink Resource Allocation of systems in support of GL-01. In issue 4 of GL-01, updates were made to the process of predicting RF levels prior to collecting on-site measurements to account for TDD systems, which are expected to become increasingly common in 5G New Radio (5G NR) deployments. When modelling TDD systems using predictions, the maximum transmitted power (or equivalent isotropically radiated power [EIRP] may be reduced by the duty cycle factor to account for the lower downlink resource allocation and better align with measurements. For Frequency Division Duplex (FDD) systems, 100% of the maximum transmitted power shall be used. Licensees would be expected to report this data as a percentage, to match the language of GL-01.
4.4 Facilitating identification and coordination on matters related to mandatory antenna tower and site sharing
44. ISED is proposing to introduce two new data elements, Site Control and Site ID, to facilitate the validation of antenna and site sharing processes covered under CPC-2-0-17, Conditions of Licence for Mandatory Roaming and Antenna Tower and Site Sharing and to Prohibit Exclusive Site Arrangements. ISED is also proposing to make it easier to view the Email Address data element by including it in the site data download.
45. The Site Control data element would indicate whoever is responsible for the mast, tower, and other antenna supporting structures at a given site. It is not meant to indicate whoever owns or is responsible for any building, street furniture, or other structures upon which the mast, tower and other antenna supporting structures are installed at a given site. Site Control would typically reside with the licensee uploading the site data unless it relates to an installation that is presently operating on a third-party site, in which case the third party should be identified as the party with Site Control. This data would not be made publicly available through the site data download, but would be used by ISED’s internal compliance validation procedures related to the requirements set out in CPC-2-0-17.
46. ISED also proposes to introduce the use of a Site ID data element. A Site ID is a unique identifier generated by licensees meant to identify each location where radios are installed. A licensee may be operating multiple services (e.g. 4G PCS, 5G AWS, etc.) at a given Site ID, each with their own site data records describing associated equipment and technical parameters. For example, one Site ID might represent a location where a single-sector or omnidirectional broadband Internet station in the 3500 MHz band is in operation. In which case the Site ID is associated to a single radio station installation. Another Site ID may represent a location where a three-sector cellular station in an AWS band is in operation. In which case that singular Site ID is associated with three separate radio station installations.
47. Licensees would be required to submit the Site ID of a location, as provided by the party identified as having Site Control. When a licensee uploads site data about an installation for which they have Site Control, they would submit their own chosen Site ID. When a licensee uploads site data which relates to an installation that is presently operating on a third-party site, they would submit the Site ID chosen by that third-party identified as the party with Site Control. Licensees uploading site data related to an installation operating on a third-party site would be required to coordinate with the third-party with Site Control to ensure entry consistency.
48. The purpose of this data element is two-fold. Site ID is expected to be increasingly useful as the growth of 5G networks and the proliferation of small cell installations, particularly in dense areas (e.g. stadiums, airports, shopping malls, etc.), lead to difficulties in distinguishing different sites using GPS coordinates alone. ISED also intends to use this data to confirm how site sharing is functioning in practice, and to ensure that in the event or case that the GPS coordinates do not align correctly between multiple licensees, that the Department can still validate which licensees have installations on a given site.
49. Finally, ISED currently requires that licensees provide an email address for the contact person who uploads the radiocommunication installations information. That email address is currently made available to the general public through the SMS when searching stations/channels data associated to spectrum licences. ISED intends to also make this information publicly visible in the spectrum licence site data export, in order to facilitate coordination between licensees on matters related to antenna tower and site sharing, and domestic and international frequency coordination.
4.5 Simplifying or phasing out reporting requirements
50. ISED seeks to phase out or simplify certain data elements from annex B of CPC-2-1-23, either because ISED has developed alternate means of inferring this data from other internal sources, or because the collection of this data has become outdated as ISED’s operational procedures evolve.
51. ISED proposes to phase out the collection of the Administrative District Office of the Account Number and Zone Enhancer Indicator data elements. ISED also proposes to remove all mention of a Station Data element from annex B of CPC-2-1-23, as it is not a specific data element that has been provided by licensees but is instead a broader category name for data that includes several different site data elements.
52. ISED proposes to rename the Company Code (Account Number) element as Account Number, for both clarity and consistency in ISED’s communications with licensees. ISED further proposes to combine the telephone number and telephone extension number elements into a single field. In addition, ISED proposes to make the Upload Reference Number data element optional. This data element is not required for ISED’s own processes, but may still be a useful tool for some licensees as a means of linking uploaded data to their internal database. ISED also proposes to remove the version or issue number portion of the Spectrum Licence Number data element. Licensees would no longer be required to provide the three-digit issue number of the licence when uploading their site data. Nevertheless, the number would continue to be provided by ISED in the published site data download.
53. ISED proposes to also phase out the reporting requirement for Site Elevation. ISED will provide its own calculated elevation data, based on its internal terrain database, in the site data download/export. The provision of ISED’s calculated data would give licensees access to a common reference value upon which to base coordination assessments. It would also give licensees the opportunity to review any significant discrepancies, or revise their input data and coordinates as needed.
54. ISED also proposes to reduce the reporting requirements related to channel frequency. As technology standards have evolved, data on bandwidth and centre frequencies is now sufficient for ISED’s purposes. ISED proposes that Tx Channel Frequency or Lower Frequency Limit and Rx Channel Frequency or Lower Frequency Limit be renamed as Tx Frequency and Rx Frequency. Licensees would no longer be required to provide a lower frequency limit. Instead they would provide the values, which represent the centre frequencies of the occupied bandwidth for the given license, as specified in the existing “bandwidth” field. Licensees would also identify any installations that are used either explicitly for transmission or explicitly for reception . Furthermore, Tx Upper Frequency Limit and Rx Upper Frequency Limit would be removed entirely, as they are no longer essential to ISED’s operations.
55. Finally, it is proposed to remove the Date of Last Modification element from the site data submission process. While this data element is not presently listed as mandatory technical information in annex B of CPC-2-1-23, it has functionally acted as a mandatory field for licensees when submitting their data. ISED is proposing to remove this data element from submission requirements.
ISED is seeking comments on its proposals for the addition of new site data elements, the revision of a number of elements, and the phasing out of certain elements, as described above in sections 4.1 to 4.5 above.
Comments or alternative proposals should clearly indicate which data element is being discussed, include supporting arguments, and discuss implications for licensees and ISED.
4.6 Transition process
56. ISED proposes a transition period of at least six months following publication of the decision related to this consultation. During this time, legacy data would remain in use in the SMS while licensees become familiar with the new and modified site data elements. ISED will provide support in the transition to the new site data element requirements. After the end of this transition period, the new requirements set out in the decision and proposed new CPC would be mandatory for all licensees.
57. The timeline and any related transitional issues will be set out in a decision following this consultation. ISED will not transfer legacy entries or data; licensees will be responsible for uploading information in accordance with the new requirements.
ISED is seeking comments on the process for transition to the new site data element requirements.
Comments or alternative proposals should include supporting arguments and discuss implications for licensees and ISED.
5. Clarifying site data upload requirements and streamlining the upload process
58. ISED also seeks comments on proposed changes to the site data process intended to increase licensees’ awareness of their requirements, facilitate compliance, and lessen the administrative burden for licensees.
5.1 Proposed introduction of a new CPC for site data requirements
59. CPC-2-1-23 addresses a range of procedures concerning the licensing process and requirements of terrestrial licensees. Apart from section 5.11 of CPC-2-2-23, concerning the provision of technical information, and annex B of CPC-2-1-23, the list of mandatory site data elements, the CPC discusses licence fees, licence renewals, transfers and subordinations, coexistence agreements and other measures. ISED considers that a separate CPC on site data requirements would help licensees become more aware of these requirements and facilitate compliance. Pending the outcome of the Earth Station Consultation, a separate CPC could also support conditions of licence related to site data requirements for certain new earth station spectrum licences.
60. Consequently, ISED proposes to migrate the contents of section 5.11, Submission of Technical Information and annex B, Site Data Elements away from CPC-2-1-23, into a new CPC that is solely focused on site data requirements. In accordance with decisions made following this consultation, ISED proposes that the related conditions of licence of affected spectrum licenses (see annex B of this consultation) would be updated to refer to the requirements set out in the new CPC.
5.2 Upload frequency
61. ISED requires site data from licensees in order to maintain an up-to-date technical database of radiocommunication installations, and effectively perform certain spectrum management responsibilities. The usefulness of site data, for both ISED and licensees, requires that all spectrum licensees provide current and accurate technical information regarding each radiocommunication installation. For these reasons, ISED proposes to standardize its requirements regarding the frequency of site data uploads.
62. All licensees would be required to begin uploading site data within one month of the issuance of a licence, whether it is a new or modified licence (such as a transfer or subordinate licence), or a renewed licence. ISED recognizes that the adoption of this requirement would entail changes to the SMS to enable licensees to provide an indication for licences for which they have not yet deployed.
63. Licensees would be required to validate their technical information monthly, regardless of whether any changes have occurred. Licensees would also be expected to upload every time an existing radiocommunication installation is modified such that the associated data elements are amended. Furthermore, licensees would be required to upload technical information about a new radiocommunication installation prior to it becoming operational. Finally, licensees would need to distinguish in the upload between planned radiocommunication installations and operational radiocommunication installations.
64. The full list of conditions of licence affected by the proposed changes can be found in annex B of this consultation. These measures are intended to ensure that licensees are reviewing their technical information regularly and maintaining up-to-date information in the site database. In addition, pending the outcome of the Earth Station Consultation, new spectrum licences could be issued to authorize earth stations. As proposed in that consultation, generic spectrum licences could be issued to authorize systems of identical, or typical, earth stations. In some frequency bands, those generic licences could be subject to a requirement to upload site data in order to facilitate coordination or coexistence with terrestrial services. As the Earth Station Consultation is ongoing, no specific earth station licences are identified in annex B of this consultation.
ISED is seeking comments on its proposal to require that all licensees provide technical information:
- within one month of the issuance of a licence
- on a monthly basis
- whenever changes are made to a radiocommunication installation which modify the related data
- prior to each site becoming operational.
Comments or alternative proposals should include supporting arguments and discuss implications for licensees and ISED.
ISED is seeking proposals on how licensees might distinguish between planned and operational radiocommunication installations within the site data upload.
Proposals should include supporting arguments and discuss implications for licensees and ISED.
5.3 Means of submitting technical information
65. Presently, in section 5.11 of CPC-2-1-23, specific requirements are set out regarding the types of file formats that may be used when submitting site data (XML or ASCII-delimited formats).
66. Given that the Comma Separated Values (CSV) file format is currently the most widely used format by the industry, ISED proposes its use as the exclusive file format for the submission of technical information at this time. ISED anticipates that the use of CSV will further streamline the site upload process for licensees. File format requirements and instructions on their use will be made available on the SMS website.
67. Moreover, in order to support uniform file formats and standardized uploads, ISED proposes revisions to the requirement that licensees must use the upload system provided. The requirement set out in the new CPC would allow for licensees, exceptionally, to make alternative arrangements with ISED.
ISED seeks comments on its proposal that the CSV format be the exclusive file format for site uploads at this time.
ISED seeks comments on its proposal that licensees would be required to use the upload system provided, unless ISED specifically approves another method for a particular licensee.
Comments or alternative proposals should include supporting arguments and discuss implications for licensees and ISED.
5.4 Improvements to site data upload process
68. The submission of site data is a multi-step process that may involve the upload of large quantities of data. While it remains imperative that licensees provide the required technical information, ISED recognizes that as the size and density of network deployments continue to grow, so too does the demand of site uploads on the administrative resources of licensees. As such, ISED is currently exploring methods that could improve the speed and efficiency of the site data upload process.
- ISED invites proposals of other measures to streamline or improve the efficiency of the site data upload process. Respondents should include a rationale and discussion of the implications of the proposal for licensees and ISED. ISED will consider suggestions and may further explore the feasibility of their later implementation.
6. Submitting comments
69. All submissions should cite the Canada Gazette, Part I, the publication date, the title and the notice reference number DGSO-001-22. Respondents should submit their comments no later than April 1, 2022, to ensure consideration. Soon after the close of the comment period, all comments received will be posted on ISED’s Spectrum Management and Telecommunications website.
70. ISED will also provide interested parties with the opportunity to reply to comments from other parties. Reply comments will be accepted until April 25, 2022.
71. Respondents are requested to provide their comments in electronic format (Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
72. Paper submissions should be mailed to the following address:
Senior Director, Spectrum Operations Directorate
Spectrum Operations Branch
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada
6th Floor, East Tower
235 Queen Street Ottawa ON K1A 0H5
73. As all comments will be posted on ISED’s Spectrum Management and Telecommunications website, respondents are responsible for ensuring that they do not include confidential or private information in their submissions.
7. Obtaining copies
74. All ISED publications related to spectrum management and telecommunications are available on the Spectrum Management and Telecommunications website.
Annex A: Summary list of proposed changes to section 5.11 (technical information) and annex B (site data elements) of CPC-2-1-23
1. Proposed new data elements
- Site Type Code
- Site Structure Code
- Cell ID
- Physical Cell ID
- Radio Technology
- Radio Certification Number
- Antenna Type Code
- Number of Tx Antenna
- Number of RX Antenna
- Tx Antenna Vertical Beam
- Tx Antenna Horizontal Beam
- Downlink Resource Allocation
- Site Control
- Site ID
- TDD Systems Synchronization
2. Proposed data element modifications
- Rename Company Code (Account Number) as Account Number.
- Simplify the Spectrum Licence Number to no longer require the three-digit licence version number.
- Make Upload Reference Number optional.
- Combine Telephone Number & Telephone Extension Number.
- Add Email Address to site data CSV export.
- Limit the use of Structure Height to outdoor structure types.
- Rename Tx Channel Frequency or Tx Lower Frequency Limit as Tx Channel Frequency and request only the Tx centre frequency of the channel.
- Rename Rx Channel Frequency or Rx Lower Frequency Limit as Rx Channel Frequency and request only the Rx centre frequency of the channel.
- Rename Tx Radio Model Number as Tx Radio HVIN to reinforce a standard syntax for radio model information.
- Rename Rx Radio Model Number as Rx Radio HVIN to reinforce a standard syntax for radio model information.
- Replace existing code system for Tx Radio Manufacturer Code.
- Replace existing code system for Rx Radio Manufacturer Code.
- Rename Transmitter Output Power as Transmitter TCP-TRP and request different data based on the Antenna type. Change unit of measurement from Watts to dBm.
- Replace existing code system for Tx Antenna Manufacturer Code.
- Replace existing code system for Rx Antenna Manufacturer Code.
- Expand Tx Antenna Height to accept negative values in order to record underground sites.
- Expand Rx Antenna Height to accept negative values in order to record underground sites.
- In Tx Antenna Gain, require that the gain of the antenna elements be provided for MIMO system.
- In Rx Antenna Gain, require that the gain of the antenna elements be provided for MIMO systems.
- Standardize the use of the decimal degree format for Latitude and Longitude coordinates.
- Site Data file uploads will be accepted exclusively in a CSV file format.
3. Proposed data element removals
- Administrative District Office of the Account Number
- Station Data
- Site Elevation
- Zone Enhancer Indicator
- Tx Upper Frequency Limit
- Rx Upper Frequency Limit
- Date of Last Modification
Annex B: List of conditions of licence affected by proposed changes to site data upload requirements
The following list of conditions of licence can be found on the Conditions of licence/Appendices webpage.
G2: 2.3/3.5 GHz Subordinate Spectrum Licences
H1: Air-Ground Service Spectrum Licences issued via the 800 MHz auction
H2: 24/38 GHz Spectrum Licences with Extended Term
H4: Spectrum Licences issued via the 3500 MHz Residual Auction (2009)
H6: 24/38 GHz Subordinate Licences
H9: Broadband Radio Service Subordinate Spectrum Licences
I3: PCS/Cellular Long-Term Spectrum Licences issued via the 2011 Renewal Process
I4: Renewed PCS/cellular Subordinate Spectrum Licences issued via the 2011 Renewal Process
I6: Interim Broadband Radio Service Spectrum Licences SSi Micro
I9: 38 GHz First Come First Served Spectrum Licences
J1: 800 MHz Air-ground Subordinate Spectrum Licences
J6: Spectrum Licences issued via the AWS Auction (2008)
J7: Broadband Radio Service Spectrum Licences issued via the Conversion From Multipoint Communication System Licences
J9: Spectrum Licences issued via the 2300 MHz Residual Auction (2009)
K1: Spectrum Licences issued under RP-019 (New Party Cellular)
K2: Inukshuk Broadband Radio Service Licences
K3: PCS/Cellular Long-Term Spectrum Licences issued via the 2011 Renewal Process
K4: PCS/Cellular Annual (interim) Spectrum Licences issued via the 2011 Renewal Process
K5: PCS/Cellular Long-Term First-Come First-Served Spectrum Licences issued after the 2011 Renewal Process
K6: PCS Spectrum Licences (Interim) issued to Certain Members of the Ontario Telecommunications Association
K7: Spectrum Licences issued via the 700 MHz Auction (2014)
K8: Subordinate Spectrum Licences issued via the 700 MHz Auction (2014)
L1: AWS Auction Subordinate Spectrum Licences
L2: 2.3 GHz Spectrum Licences issued via the 2014 Renewal Process
L3: 3.5 GHz Spectrum Licences issued via the 2014 Renewal Process
L5: 3.5 GHz Subordinate Spectrum Licences issued after the 2014 Renewal Process
L8: Spectrum Licences in 3.5 GHz issued on First-Come First-Served basis after the 2014 Renewal Process
L9: AWS-4 (Ancillary Terrestrial Component) Spectrum Licences
L10: 3.5 GHz Spectrum Licences issued via the 2021 Auction or Transition Process
L12: 3.5 GHz Fixed Wireless Access Spectrum Licences issued after the 2021 Auction
M1: Spectrum Licences issued via the AWS-3 Auction (2015)
M2: Ruralcom Corporation Spectrum Licences issued under RP-019 (Updated February 2017)
M3: Auction Licences - BRS
M4: BWA 24 and 38 GHz Auction Licences issued as a result of the renewal process of 2014
N4: Spectrum Licences issued via the AWS-3 Residual Auction (2015)
N8: 24/38 GHz Subordinate Spectrum Licences Issued After the 2014 Renewal Process
O2: Spectrum licences issued via the 700 MHz residual auction (2018)
O3: Spectrum licences issued via the 2300 MHz residual auction (2018)
O4: Spectrum licences issued via the 2500 MHz residual auction (2018)
O5: Spectrum licences issued via the PCS-G residual auction (2018)
P1: 600 MHz Spectrum Licences issued via the 2019 Auction
P2: 600 MHz Spectrum Licences issued via the 2019 Auction
P3: AWS-1 Spectrum Licences issued via the 2018 Renewal Process
P4: PCS Block G Spectrum Licences issued via the 2018 Renewal Process
P5: I Block Spectrum Licences issued via the 2018 Renewal Process
P6: AWS-1 Subordinate Spectrum Licences issued via the 2018 Renewal Process
P7: PCS Block G Subordinate Spectrum Licences issued via the 2018 Renewal Process
P8: I Block Spectrum Subordinate Licences issued via the 2018 Renewal Process
P9: AWS-4 (Ancillary Terrestrial Component) Subordinate Spectrum Licences
Q5: AWS-3 Auction Subordinate Spectrum Licences
Q6: Air-Ground Service Spectrum Licences issued via the 2018 Renewal Process
Q8: 3.5 GHz Fixed Wireless Access Subordinate Spectrum Licences
Q9: 2.5 GHz BRS Non-Auctioned Spectrum Licences issued via the 2020 Renewal Process