The Satcom Industry Association of India (SIA India) has reportedly urged the space industry regulator Indian National Space Promotion and Authorisation Centre (IN-SPACe) to look into the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (TRAI) consultation paper on spectrum allocation mode for space services, stating that the underlying intent of the paper appears to be forcing an auction of satellite spectrum, contrary to global practices.
In a letter to Pawan Goenka, chairman, IN-SPACe, Anil Prakash, director general, SIA India has expressed that most questions in the TRAI’s consultation paper explicitly reveal that the intent of the process revolves around auction of satellite spectrum in the critical ‘C’, ‘Ku’ and ‘Ka’ bands that can derail the ongoing momentum in the satellite sector. To this end, the industry body has sought the regulator’s intervention in TRAI’s consultation process.
Further, the letter noted that satellite spectrum is a globally shared resource and extensively re-used in the same geographic locations by multiple satellite networks. Therefore, market allocation mechanisms are not feasible for satellite spectrum. It added that no country has allocated spectrum resources for space-based communications through the auctioning process.
The industry association has also taken strong exception to TRAI’s proposal of earmarking an additional 400 MHz of airwaves in the 28 GHz band, also known as the Ka band, for captive private networks. SIA India said that such allocation would leave a mere 600 MHz allocation in the 28 Ghz band for satellite services and seriously hamper the growth of the sector.