Summary report of the January 2000 meeting of 
IEEE 802.11


Our January 2000 meeting was held at the David Inter-Continental Hotel, Tel Aviv, Israel, organised by host BreezeCom Communications. BreezeCom provided the 802.11 network this time. We had the benefit of an Internet access thanks to the modem and Gateway brought by Tim Godfrey.

BreezeCom treated us to a nice evening tour through the old town of Jaffa completed with a dinner entertained by a trio playing folk music and a belly dancer. Our sub-chairs got a chance to follow a belly dance lasson. Those staying the whole of Friday were treated also to a day tour to Bethlehem and Jeruzalem. Members indicated they would be voting in favour of having a plenary or interim in Israel. 


Meeting schedule

To complete the work on draft standard 802.11d, some off line work is to be prformed. The session has not been adjourned until a teleconference to decide the result of that work. The important decision tele-conference will be held on Wednesday, 16-FEB-2000. Conference Time:

10:00 AM Eastern
09:00 AM Central
08:00 AM Mountain
07:00 AM Pacific
If you want to participate, send an e-mail to the Chair (vichayes@lucent.com) so he can make sure there are sufficient ports. For the schedule, refer to the TGd part.


Work in the 5 GHz band

"Task Group a" did not convene. IEEE Std 802.11a-1999, the baby of the group, rolled off the press last week and will be sent to the individuals that are mentioned in the standard.

The standard is based on Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM) to modulate the data. The main benefit OFDM modulation is its robustness to multipath echoes, which are typical to the indoor and mobile environments. Each OFDM symbol is composed of 52 subcarriers, of which 48 carry data and 4 subcarriers serve as phase reference pilots. The specifications of the Physical Layer encompass data rates from 6 Mbit/s up to 54 Mbit/s, with 20 MHz spacing between adjacent channels. All implementations are required to support 6, 12 and 24 Mbit/s. Optional extensions are for 9, 18, 36, 48 and 54 Mbit/s. The range of data rates is provided to match the wide range of radio channel characteristics in both indoor and outdoor environments. The multirate mechanism of the MAC protocol ensures that all devices communicate with each other at the best data rate in the present channel.


Work in the 2.45 GHz band

"Task Group b" did not convene this meeting. IEEE Std 802.11b-1999 will be sent to the printer around January 21, 2000.

The modulation used in the Standard is Complementary Code Keying (CCK). CCK is the mandatory mode of operation for the Standard, it is derived from the Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum (DSSS) technology. The multirate mechanism of the Medium Access Control (MAC) warrants that the 11 Mbit/s operation can switch back to 5.5 Mbit/s if the radio channel is below the required value because of the distance between the stations or because of interference. Stations that are even further away could switch back to the 2 and 1 Mbit/s capablities of the DSSS modulation.


Work on the corrigendum of 802.11b's MIB

 The Working Group Ballot on draft D1.0 of 802.11b-cor passed unanimously with the following statisitics: "Task Group b-cor" addressed all comments and produced a new draft, D1.1. Carl Andren will translate the document into FrameMaker, and change the revision level to D2.0. As soon as the Sponsor Ballot Group is in place. we will start the Sponsor Ballot (after the March plenary meeting).
NOTE: The designation of the project will be changed pending the decision by NesCom. Because multiple corrigenda could exist, it is needed to distinguish between the various projects. One member of NesCom is in favour of just giving the next letter in the sequence of letters to corregenda, another member opted for numbering the corrigenda per object. 802.11 asked the chair to indicate that the result of the effort must be that 802.11b will remain having the same name.
That assurance already came from the member opting for the next available letter.

Work on update of Regulatory domains

 The Working Group Ballot on draft D1.0 of 802.11d passed with the following statisitics: "Task Group d" reviewed the outcome and managed to address the majority of the comments. Unfortunately, the work could not be completed. The following schedule is made to progress the work:
  1. Continue work for 2 weeks after the January Interim and make the revised comment resolution document available on the 802.11 website by Jan 31, 2000.
  2. Schedule teleconference call for Feb 7th, 2000 to informally discuss the changes to the draft, and report a revised version of the draft by Feb 8th, 2000.
  3. Schedule an approval teleconference meeting on Feb 15th, 2000
  4. Start recirculation on Feb 16th, 2000, and close on Feb 27th, 2000.
  5. Results available on March 16th, 2000.
Task Group d is adding the necessary changes to the standard to enable International Mobility of 802.11 devices. 

New work on Enhancements of 802.11

The group decided to start a study group under the chairmanship of John Fakatselis to prepare a possible PAR and 5 Criteria document for enhancements to the 802.11 standard. Elements could include such functions as improvement of isochronous services, improved privacy by longer keys and better authentication mechanisms, etc.
The group is looking for people interested to do the work and calls for submissions on the topics of additional markets served by better isochronous services, ischronous services on 802.11 using the PCF, new functionality required to support isochronous services, stronger privacy requirements, and needs for stronger authentication.

Regulatory activities

The group reviewed concerns expressed in South Korea about the assignment of the bands below 2400 MHz to Wireless Local LOOP (WLL), causing interference from WLL into Radio LANs as well as concern about changing of the regulations for Radio LANs to prevent interference into WLL. Enquiries taught that there were no changes of the regulations involved, it was just mentioned that regulations for Radio LANs were on a non-interfernece, non-protective basis.