Fixed terrestrial links

01 March 2017

Fixed Terrestrial Links or Fixed Wireless Systems (FWS) refer to terrestrial based wireless systems, operating between two or more fixed points. Using mainly digital technologies, directional antennas and typically operating at very high levels of propagation availability fixed terrestrial links are used to provide network infrastructure and customer access applications across a wide range of frequency bands, currently ranging from 450MHz to 86GHz.

Please note our ongoing work on our mobile data strategy. Our strategy considers the challenges that rapidly growing demand for mobile data services could raise and what this may imply for Ofcom's work over the coming years. In particular, we identify and prioritise a number of spectrum bands where we are undertaking further work regarding their potential future availability for mobile data use, whilst recognising the many other competing demands for spectrum. Our statement was published in May 2014.
We updated our strategy in June 2016 PDF, 363.4 KB to take into account new developments such as developments in 5G technology.

Update: 6 October 2016

We have published a consultation document Improving consumer access to mobile services at 3.6 to 3.8 GHz. If you are considering applying to use the 3.6 GHz to 3.8 GHz band, please read Section 10 of this consultation document  PDF, 598.5 KB for an explanation of how the availability of assignments in this band may change in the future and some interim measures applicable from the date of this consultation.

Fixed terrestrial millimetre-wave point to point links, typically for short hop high capacity wireless access and infrastructure networks.

At the present time the 64-66 GHz band is being administered under interim licensing and link registration processes. The interim procedures (described in OfW 385) will be in place until Ofcom announces the permanent procedures for this band which are intended to be via a web based tool.

OfW384 Form for Link Registration in the 64-66 GHz band PDF, 80.2 KB

OfW 368: Application form for a Licence in the 64-66, 73.375 – 75.875 GHz and 83.375 – 85.875 GHz bands
PDF, 54.1 KB

OfW 369: Guidance Notes for Self Co-ordinated Licence and Interim Link Registration Process in the 64-66 GHz, 73.375-75.875 GHz and 83.375-85.875 GHz bands PDF, 63.8 KB

65 GHz section of the Wireless Telegraphy Register
XLS, 555.2 KB

Fixed terrestrial millimetre-wave point to point links, typically for short hop high capacity wireless access and infrastructure networks.

The 73.375 – 75.875 GHz and 83.375 – 85.875 GHz band is available in the UK under a light licensed process for point to point fixed wireless applications

At the present time the band is being administered under interim licensing and link registration processes. The interim procedures which consist of mainly manual procedures (described in OfW 369) will be in place until Ofcom announces the permanent procedures for this band which are intended to be via a web based tool.

OfW 368: Application form for a Licence in the 64-66, 73.375 – 75.875 GHz and 83.375 – 85.875 GHz bands
PDF, 54.1 KB

OfW 369: Guidance Notes for Self Co-ordinated Licence and Interim Link Registration Process in the 64-66 GHz, 73.375-75.875 GHz and 83.375-85.875 GHz bands PDF, 63.8 KB

OfW 383: Form for Link Registration in the 73.375 – 75.875 GHz and 83.375 – 85.875 GHz bands
PDF, 71.3 KB

70/80 GHz section of the Wireless Telegraphy Register XLSX, 905.6 KB
Updated 01|03|17

Fixed terrestrial point to multipoint links for supervisory, control and data acquisition (SCADA) remote access applications.

Scanning Telemetry Link Licence Application Form PDF, 134.1 KB

Fees information


Spectrum trading

Our Spectrum Trading Desk is the first point of contact for more detailed information and clarification on spectrum trading, or if you would like to conduct a trade.  The Desk can be contacted by:

post: Spectrum Trading Desk, Ofcom, Riverside House, 2a Southwark Bridge Road, London SE1 9HA

email: spectrum.tradingdesk@ofcom.org.uk

telephone: 020 7981 3083

fax: 020 7981 3052


Trading guidance notes PDF, 179.5 KB


Application for Spectrum Trading (Lease) (OfW512) PDF, 170.9 KB

Application for Spectrum Trading (OfW206)  PDF, 169.2 KB

Application for Spectrum Trading (Outright Transfer) (OfW437)  PDF, 103.7 KB

Due diligence form PDF, 37.9 KB

Technical Frequency Assignment Criteria

OfW446 - Technical Frequency Assignment Criteria for Fixed Point-to-Point Radio Services with Digital Modulation PDF, 2.0 MB

OfW31 - Fixed Point-to-Point Radio Services with Analogue Modulation Operating in the Frequency Ranges 31.0 to 31.3 GHz paired with 31.5 to 31.8 GHz  PDF, 287.2 KB
In this document all references to the Wireless Telegraphy Acts should be replaced by "The Wireless Telegraphy Act 2006"

OfW 49 - Fixed Point-to-Point and Point-to- Multipoint Scanning Telemetry Radio Services with Analogue Modulation Operating in the Frequency Ranges 457.5 to 458.5 MHz paired with 463.0 to 464.0 MHz PDF, 1.2 MB


Equipment and Antenna Reference Codes

Guidance on Equipment and Antenna Reference Codes PDF, 41.0 KB

Antenna Reference Codes XLS, 3.7 MB
Updated 08|02|17

Equipment Reference Codes XLS, 908.5 KB
Updated 08|02|17


Interface requirements

IR 2000 Point-to-Point Fixed Wireless Systems Operating in Fixed Service Frequency Bands Administered by Ofcom
PDF, 147.8 KB

IR 2078 - Fixed Wireless Systems in the 57.1 - 63.9 GHz band
PDF, 105.0 KB


Other technical information

OfW48 UK Frequency Allocations for Fixed (Point-to-Point) Wireless Services and Scanning Telemetry
PDF, 437.0 KB

OfW557 - Guidance for fixed link assignment requests in the 1.4 GHz band from 29 May 2015 - Mitigation measures to achieve compatibility between base stations in 1452-1452 MHz and fixed links in 1498.5-1517 MHz
PDF, 422.9 KB

Rain-rate map used by Ofcom in fixed link frequency assignment procedures
.map file

The construction of tall structures, including wind turbines, may impact on wireless services including wireless links or domestic broadcast reception. More information on these effects is available in an Ofcom guidance document, Tall structures and their impact on broadcast and other wireless services PDF, 149.3 KB

Wind farm co-ordination policy

When we are notified of a proposed windfarm, we will check to determine whether any part of that windfarm falls within 500 metres of the path between the terminals, or the terminals themselves, of any fixed link system operating above 1 GHz.

For scanning telemetry links, notifications will be forwarded on to CSS and JRC who will check whether any part of the windfarm falls within 1 kilometre of the path between the terminals, or the terminals themselves, of a fixed link system operating between 450 to 470 MHz.

If either check is positive, then we will inform the notifier that the windfarm proposer must liaise with the appropriate fixed link system operator(s).

Fixed Wireless Links and Scanning Telemetry Coordination

In relation to fixed wireless links (above 1GHz) and scanning telemetry links, Ofcom currently offers a coordination service for windfarm developers and planning authorities:

  • When we are notified of a proposed windfarm, we will check to determine whether any part of that windfarm falls within 500 metres of the path between the terminals, or the terminals themselves, of any fixed link system operating above 1 GHz.
  • For scanning telemetry links, notifications will be forwarded on to CSS and JRC who will check whether any part of the windfarm falls within 1 kilometre of the path between the terminals, or the terminals themselves, of a fixed link system operating between 450 to 470 MHz.
  • If either check is positive, then we will inform the notifier that the windfarm proposer must liaise with the appropriate fixed link system operator(s).

Developers and planning authorities wishing to submit coordination requests should e-mail details of proposed wind turbine locations to:Spectrum.Licensing@ofcom.org.uk

Enquiries will be forwarded to Ofcom’s Spectrum Assignment & Coordination team for civil microwave fixed links clearance; we also forward the enquiry to Atkins Telecommunications and Joint Radio Company Ltd. (JRC) for scanning telemetry clearance.

RF Measurement Assessment of Potential Wind Farm Interference to Fixed Links and Scanning Telemetry Devices PDF, 2.1 MB

Fixed-link wind-turbine exclusion zone method PDF, 65.7 KB

Domestic Television Reception

Ofcom cannot offer assessments of the potential impact of proposed windfarms or other tall structures on domestic television reception.

Viewers who are concerned about the impact of an existing or proposed windfarm on their television reception should contact their local planning authority or the developer of the windfarm. More information about the options open to developers and planning authorities to mitigate the effects on windfarms on television reception are available in the Guidance document below.

Ofcom’s Fixed Wireless Services (FWS) team runs a number of industry groups, promoting the use of the spectrum and facilitating spectrum trading. They aid direct communication with industry, designing a forum to exchange knowledge, ideas and analyse new concepts. They help FWS achieve its main goal which is to balance many competing objectives such as maximising spectral efficiency, flexibility of use for users, market demands and more.

Ofcom and industry members are given the opportunity to discuss market issues together, exchange ideas and share feedback on current projects concerning the management of the fixed wireless spectrum.

Attendees benefit from gaining increased knowledge and understanding of industry issues. More specifically, they are used for improving services and products, building relationships and improving problem-solving.

The groups are valuable opportunities for Ofcom and industry members to interact with each other directly, develop a more thorough understanding of each others’ working methods and priorities. Ofcom find it increases customer confidence which helps to identify and discuss key issues and subsequently lead to developing mutually beneficial solutions.

The industry groups for FWS are:

Fixed Wireless Industry Liaison Forum (FWILF)
Fixed Wireless Technical Review Task Group (FWTRTG)
Working Parties (WP)
Fixed Service Task Group (FSTG)

Fixed Wireless Industry Liaison Forum (FWILF)

The FWILF is the main forum. Usually meeting twice a year, it updates members on the latest developments in current technical and market issues and coordinates the events of the other groups. If you wish to gather an overview of recent developments to improve the spectrum efficiency for fixed wireless services, trading policies and general issues that will potentially affect the whole of the industry, than it is best to attend this forum.

Fixed Wireless Technical Review Task Group (FWTRTG)

FWTRTG is a sub-group of the FWILF. A smaller group, this discusses technical issues in detail. The group is used as a facilitator to report on the progress of technical projects being run by Ofcom and members of the FWILF.

Working Parties (WP)

These are small project teams that investigate specific issues raised in the FWILF whether technical or otherwise. They aim to derive possible solutions. The WP reports to the FWILF.

Fixed Service Task Group (FSTG)

This is another sub-group of the FWILF which assembles the scientific community to explore and solve propagation and planning issues raised by industry members at the FWILF. The group offers a chance to discuss ideas and issues with members possessing in-depth technical knowledge and a high level of scientific radio expertise.

How to get involved

If you wish to find out more information about the Fixed Wireless Industry Liason Forum (FWILF) or one of its sub committees or would like to attend one of our meetings, please contact the industry secretary christian.songue@ofcom.org.uk and place ‘Industry Groups’ in the subject box, leaving your contact details and which group you are interested in.