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  • Developers Welcome Ultra Wideband Approval
Feb 2002
SAN DIEGO, Feb. 18 -- A recent FCC ruling has brought a new wireless technology called ultra wideband (UWB) into the open and paved the way for at least one innovator developing the technology, including San Diego-based PulseLINK.

Bruce Watkins, PulseLINK president and COO, said applications made possible under last week's approval include wireless high-definition digital video networking and local area networks for home and office between devices such as computers, cell phones, PDAs and other mobile handheld products; digital television and entertainment systems; cable and satellite set-top boxes; security systems; "and virtually all consumer electronics and appliances that would benefit from wireless connectivity."

Used secretly by the military for more than twenty years, ultra wideband was suited for highly secure communications and only became declassified in the last decade. In addition to providing a solution to the increasing problem of spectrum allocation, its purported benefits include advanced broadband wireless communications, precise positioning and radar capable of penetrating walls and obstacles, for uses such as search and rescue.

UWB delivers broadband wireless communications without using an RF Carrier for its signal. Instead, data is transmitted using time and amplitude modulated pulses of less than one nanosecond long.

"UWB can peacefully coexist with carrier frequency uses without interference, and by reusing RF spectrum it opens vast communications possibilities to ease the growing bandwidth crunch," Watkins said.

The FCC approved limited use of UWB devices and services. The technology has drawn the concern of wireless operators, military agencies and the airline industry because it involves the sharing of spectrum and could interfere with global positioning system transmissions.

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