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Re: [802SEC] FYI: Protocol to Access White Space database (paws)

Dear EC Members,

Building on Paul's email those with a TVWS interest may also find this ITU-R contribution from DySPAN-SC to be of interest.



-----Original Message-----
From: ***** IEEE 802 Executive Committee List ***** [] On Behalf Of Paul Nikolich
Sent: Thursday, June 09, 2011 09:01
Subject: [802SEC] FYI: Protocol to Access White Space database (paws)

Dear EC members,

Please see the below update on new work the IETF is engaged in TVWS area (Protocol to Access White Space Databases).  For those working in TVWS, please make your WGs aware of the activity.



----- Original Message -----
From: "The IESG" <>
Sent: Friday, June 03, 2011 5:07 PM
Subject: [new-work] WG Review: Protocol to Access White Space database

> In mid-April, the IESG requested external review of the draft charter 
> for a proposed working group to focus on development of a "Protocol to 
> Access White Space Databases" (paws).  Based on discussions within the 
> IESG, the draft charter has undergone significant revision.  As a 
> courtesy, the revised charter is being provided for informational 
> purposes.  Please send any comments on this revised charter to the 
> IESG mailing list ( by Wednesday, June 8, 2011.
> Protocol to Access White Space database (paws)
> ------------------------------------------------
> Current Status: Proposed Working Group Last updated: 2011-06-02
> Chairs:
>    TBD
> Applications Area Directors:
>    Pete Resnick <>
>    Peter Saint-Andre <>
> Applications Area Advisor:
>    Peter Saint-Andre <>
> Mailing lists:
>    General Discussion:
>    To Subscribe:
>    Archive:
> Description of Working Group:
> Background
> Radio spectrum is a limited resource.  National and international 
> bodies assign different frequencies for specific uses, and in most 
> cases license the rights to use these frequencies.  Locally unused 
> spectrum is commonly called "white space" and may be made available to 
> other services on a basis of non-interference with the primary user of 
> the frequencies concerned (if any). This technique can help "unlock" 
> existing spectrum, for example to enable the wireless communications 
> industry to provide more services over frequencies associated with 
> unused television channels.  An obvious requirement is that white 
> space uses must not interfere with the primary use of the spectrum.  
> This is achieved through spatial and/or temporal separation of the 
> primary user and whitespace user with due consideration made to the 
> radio characteristics of the two uses.
> Problem Statement
> The fundamental problem is enabling a radio device to determine, in a 
> specific location and at specific time, if any white space is 
> available for secondary use.  There are two parties to such an
> interaction:
> 1. A database containing records about the protected contours (in 
> space and time) of primary spectrum users.  Typically, such databases 
> will be populated and operated by the appropriate spectrum regulation 
> bodies in a given locale.
> 2. A radio device that wishes to query such a database. Typically, the 
> the nature of the query will depend on the needs of the device.
> The contents of white space databases, and the needs of radio devices, 
> are being defined elsewhere.  However, these parties need a protocol 
> for communication that will enable radio devices to find out what 
> white space is available at a given time in a given location.
> It is expected that white space databases will be reachable via the 
> Internet, and that radio devices too will have some form of Internet 
> connectivity, directly or indirectly.  Therefore, it is appropriate to 
> define an Internet-based protocol for querying white space databases 
> and receiving responses from such databases.
> In rough outline, such a protocol would enable a radio device that 
> knows its location to complete the following tasks:
> 1. Determine the relevant white space database to query.
> 2. Connect to the database using a well-defined access method.
> 3. Provide its geolocation and perhaps other data to the database
>   using a well-defined wire format for querying the database.
> 4. Receive in return a list of currently available white space
>   using a well-defined wire format for returning information.
> Once the device learns of the available white space (e.g., in a TV 
> white space implementation, the list of available channels at that 
> location), it can then select one of the bands from the list and begin 
> to transmit and receive on the selected band.  If the device's 
> parameters have changed (e.g., if some amount of time has passed or if 
> the device has changed location beyond a specified threshold), it 
> might need to query the database again to determine what white space 
> is still available.
> Objectives
> The overall goals of this working group are to:
> 1. Standardize a mechanism for discovering a white space database.
> 2. Standardize a method for accessing a white space database.
> 3. Standardize wire formats to be carried over the database access 
> method (i.e., formats for queries and responses).
> 4. Ensure that the discovery mechanism, database access method, and 
> wire formats have appropriate security levels in place.
> By "standardize" is not meant that the working group will necessarily 
> develop new technologies.  In completing its work, the group will:
> - Evaluate existing discovery mechanisms to determine if one of  them 
> provides the necessary application features and security  properties 
> (or can be extended to do so) for discovering a  white space database.  
> Examples might include DNS.
> - Evaluate existing application-layer transport protocols to  
> determine if one of them provides the necessary application  features 
> and security properties (or can be extended to do so)  for use as a 
> building block for communication between location-  aware devices and 
> white space databases.  If such a method  exists, the group will reuse 
> it; if not, the group will develop  one.  Examples might include HTTP.
> - Develop a method for querying a white space database.  Such  a 
> method will utilize, so far as possible, the features of  the 
> application-layer transport protocol and not re-implement  them in the 
> new protocol. It will include mechanisms to verify  that the requests 
> and responses come from authorized sources,  and that they have not 
> been modified in transit.  Examples might  include LDAP.
> - Define extensible wire formats for both location-specific queries  
> and location-specific responses for interaction with radio white  
> space databases.  The group will consider whether existing data  
> formats can be reused.
> The protocol must protect both the channel enablement process and the 
> privacy of users.  Robust privacy and security mechanisms are needed 
> to prevent: device identity spoofing, modification of device requests, 
> modification of channel enablement information, impersonation of 
> registered database services, and unauthorized disclosure of a 
> device's location.  The group will consider whether existing privacy 
> and security mechanisms can be reused.
> The task of defining the structure and contents of the databases 
> themselves is out of scope.  The group will standardize wire formats 
> for communication between devices and databases, but not the 
> information models for the databases, since those models are likely to 
> be country-specific or application-specific.  In addition, the 
> particular data exchanged between a device and a database might depend 
> on the ranges of radio spectrum that are to be used, the requirements 
> of the database operators and their governing regulations, and other factors.
> Therefore, the database access method and the query/response data 
> formats that are exchanged using that method need to be designed for 
> extensibility rather than being tied to any specific spectrum, 
> country, or phy/mac/air interface.  For example, the working group 
> should define extension points for the database access method and the 
> wire formats that are used to query a database and respond to queries, 
> so that use cases other than those currently envisioned can be 
> addressed in the future if a community of interest wishes to do so.  
> However, the access method and wire formats will incorporate relevant 
> aspects of the parameters needed for the currently envisioned use 
> cases to ensure proper operation.
> In accordance with existing IETF processes, the group will communicate 
> and invite participation with other relevant standards bodies and 
> groups, and if necessary reuse existing liaison relationships or 
> request the establishment of new liaison relationships, including but 
> not limited to IEEE 802.11af and IEEE 802.22.  In order to ensure that 
> it takes into account a broad range of possible use cases and 
> requirements, the group should also reach out to other potential 
> "customers" for a white space database access method and consider 
> input from regulatory entities that are involved in the specification 
> of the rules for secondary use of spectrum in specific radio bands.
> Deliverables
> 1. A description of the relevant use cases and requirements.  This 
> document shall be Informational.  Subject to working group consensus, 
> draft-probasco-paws-overview-usecases and 
> draft-patil-paws-problem-stmt might be used as a starting point.
> 2. A specification of the mechanism for discovering a white space 
> database, the method for accessing a white space database, and the 
> wire format for querying and receiving responses from a white space 
> database.  This document shall be Standards Track.
> Milestones
> Oct 2011 Submit 'Use Cases and Requirements for Accessing a Radio 
> White Space Database' to the IESG for publication as Informational
> Apr 2012 Submit 'Accessing a Radio White Space Database' to the IESG 
> for publication as Proposed Standard
> _______________________________________________
> new-work mailing list

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