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NATO Wants to Take Part in Talks Over 5G Standardization; NCIA CTO Antonio Calderon Quoted

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The NATO Communications and Information Agency wants to participate in ongoing discussions over 5G standardization to ensure that the wireless technology could be used to support both military and civilian applications, Defense News reported Tuesday.

NCIA is in talks with industry partners with ties to the 3rd Generation Partnership Project, which is composed of organizations developing mobile communications protocols.

Antonio Calderon, interim chief technology officer for NCIA, said the agency is not part of 3GPP but it can air its issues with the partnership’s members.

“If we are not part of that discussion, if we are not around the table, the 5G standards will be focused on civilian applications,” he noted.

NCIA has been carrying out internal technical reviews to assess the potential of 5G for military purposes and Calderon said the agency has narrowed down its focus to two applications – communications and information systems and maritime communications – due to their potential in military and civilian domains.

“Those two already have a mature industry, doing trials and proofs of concept,” Calderon said of the applications. “But those two are also the most interesting for NATO – it’s hand in hand.