Institute for Telecommunication Sciences
the research laboratory of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration

Institute for Telecommunication Sciences / Programs / Spectrum Monitoring / Standardization

Standardization and Open Source Software

Fully characterizing the wireless environment requires coordinated data collection, organization, and analysis efforts to aggregate spectrum monitoring data for the common good. To date, there is a lack of broad cooperation; existing spectrum monitoring efforts are largely independent and are each constrained to the scope of individual organizations’ resources. This is a problem because uncoordinated spectrum monitoring cannot provide the volume of data that regulators need.

To address the problem of uncoordinated spectrum monitoring and to enable the development of a spectrum monitoring software ecosystem, the ITS Spectrum Monitoring program team is heavily involved in an IEEE 802.15.22.3 standardization effort entitled Spectrum Characterization and Occupancy Sensing (SCOS). The purpose of this project is to develop a public standard for the control of a distributed network of sensors.  

ITS is actively developing the leading implementation of the IEEE 802.15.22.3 draft standard. The SCOS system includes two primary software components: SCOS Sensor and SCOS Manager.

SCOS Sensor

SCOS Sensor  provides a common language to interact with heterogeneous distributed RF sensors regardless of the manufacturer, capabilities, or cost. SCOS Sensor allows developers to create customized sensing Actions to support complex processing that may be utilized by novice users. SCOS sensor provides:

  • Low-cost, open-source development resources
  • Design flexibility to allow developers to evolve sensor technologies and metrics
  • A well defined API to support integration with additional software defined radios. 
  • Easy-to-use sensor control and data retrieval via IP network
  • Discoverable sensor capabilities
  • Task scheduling using start/stop times, interval, and/or priority
  • Standardized metadata/data format that supports cooperative sensing and open data initiatives
  • Security controls that prevent unauthorized users from accessing internal sensor functionality
  • Automated tests for quality assurance.

SCOS Manager

The SCOS Manager provides centralized command and control for large networks of distributed sensors. In addition, the Manager provides data storage, retrieval, analytics and visualization. SCOS Manager supports:

  • Viewing sensor status
  • Viewing sensor capabilities
  • Viewing active schedules
  • Searching and downloading archived RF data
  • Scheduling sensing Actions on one or multiple sensors
  • Integrating with external Authentication & Authorization servers (e.g., Active Directory)
  • Multiple organizations/groups with Role Based Access Control 
  • Automated analytic integration via analytics API

For more information about this project, contact Michael Cotton.