As the partial government shutdown began in late December, the Department of Transportation published a request for comments on how DOT should approach vehicle-to-everything communications. V2X refers to a suite of technologies that could enable everything from hazard warnings to drivers and pedestrians to high-speed automated road trains. Thatís significant enough. But DOTís second question highlights the current high-stakes policy debate among automakers, governments and telecommunications firms over the future of a band of radio spectrum.

Those frequencies, known as the intelligent transportation system (ITS) band, 75 MHz centered around 5.9 GHz (5.850Ė5.925 GHz), was allocated by the Federal Communications Commission in 1999 for use by dedicated short-range communications (DSRC) systems. In DOTís request for comments, the second question asks what should become of the 5.9 GHz band.

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