|WP 8B is responsible for studies related to the maritime mobile service, including the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS), aeronautical mobile service and radiodetermination service. It studies communication systems for the maritime mobile service and aeronautical mobile service and radar and radiolocation systems for the radiodetermination service.
WP 8B develops and maintains Recommendations that enable protection for distress and safety applications of the above services while permitting sharing of the limited spectrum resources with other services operating within the allocated bands. The technical and operational characteristics of various systems are also studied, in an attempt to make the equipment used for distress and safety easy to operate while guarding against false alerts and interference to others using these bands.
The maritime mobile service, by the very nature of its remote operations, is critically dependent on the radio spectrum for the conduct of its business activities as well as for providing the vital link to search and rescue authorities and other ships during distress incidents and during other potentially dangerous conditions which could evolve into a distress situation.
With respect to the aeronautical mobile service, aeronautical operational communications are dependent to a great extent on radio spectrum for scheduling, and provisioning of commercial aircraft, as well as for air traffic control and distress and safety communications. All of these are safety related communications and must be given protection. Therefore, Recommendations relating to protection criteria must be continuously studied with respect to proposed new sharing scenarios and to take into account innovations in technology.
With respect to the radiodetermination service, many of these are vital to safe shipping particularly in busy harbors and seaways. While these services are afforded adequate allocation status, nonetheless, proposals for sharing with new systems which require significant new spectrum allocations are being made in preparation for world radiocommunication conferences. This requires development of Recommendations specifically addressing the characteristics of all known radar systems , potential enhancements made possible due to the introduction of new technology and standardized measurement and mitigation techniques for each proposed new sharing scenario.