The Pentagon has selected Tinker Air Force Base to test 5G and study how the military can share the next generation spectrum with commercial entities, reported The Oklahoman. Since the military already uses some frequencies in the 5G range, Tinker has become one of twelve military installations selected for testing and experimentation.
“What we’re going to try and look at is how can we share that bandwidth between the commercial side and the military side,” said Chief Technology Officer Mike Valentine with Tinker’s 72nd Airbase Wing, Directorate of Communications.
The bases selected by the Pentagon had several factors in common. According to The Oklahoman, each can provide:
- Streamlined access to site spectrum bands
- Mature fiber and wireless infrastructure
- Access to key facilities
- Support for new or improved infrastructure requirements
- Controlled experimentation with dynamic spectrum sharing
According to Valentine, the project at Tinker will develop capabilities to help the military operate in what’s expected to be a crowded space. “With more people using WiFi, everyone’s using cell phones, the spectrum is getting increasingly congested, and sometimes we interfere with each other,” he said.
With ongoing testing on military bases, there will be continued opportunities available. The Department of Defense has issued requests for proposals for several test programs at the website 5g-to-xg.org.