WTB Grants Waiver Request for DRS to Expand Rural Broadband Coverage to Remote Alaskan Villages

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The FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau (WTB or the Bureau) granted the request for waiver filed by DRS Global Enterprises Solutions, Inc. (DRS), of certain channel bandwidth limitations in the 6525-6875 MHz band (Upper 6 GHz Band).  The waiver permits DRS to provide operational fixed point-to-point microwave service in the Upper 6 GHz Band using 60 MHz-wide channels so that DRS can expand its rural broadband coverage to the remote Alaskan villages of Allakaket and Alatna, providing services for telemedicine, education, and emergencies.

The Bureau granted the waiver because DRS was able to demonstrate that waiving the channelization restrictions was the only reasonable way it could increase broadband and wireless backhaul capacity to Alaskan villages.  The Bureau held that either laying fiber and landlines or using other spectrum bands would be infeasible and unduly burdensome.

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