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Lessons Learned from a Radio Spectrum Coexistence Competition: A Road Map to Engagement in Informal Education of Wireless Communication

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2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 23, 2018

Start Date

June 23, 2018

End Date

July 27, 2018

Conference Session

Electrical and Computer Division Technical Session 7

Tagged Division

Electrical and Computer

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Paper Authors


Joshua Alexéi García Sheridan Virginia Tech Orcid 16x16

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Joshua García Sheridan is a PhD student in the Department of Engineering Education at Virginia Tech. He received his Bachelor's of Science in Electrical Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His current research work include gaming and game-like interventions in engineering education and designing interactive educational tutorials for radio engineering, with research interests in explicitly mapping childhood stages of cognitive development to engineering knowledge and skills for K-12 curricula.

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Richard M. Goff Virginia Tech

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Richard M. Goff is a former aircraft structural test engineer for the Navy, a Peace Corps Volunteer, and computer entrepreneur. He holds a Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering, and is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Engineering Education at Virginia Tech. Richard has been teaching and engaging in research in multidisciplinary engineering design education for over twenty years. Dr. Goff is the recipient of several university teaching awards, outreach awards, and best paper awards. His passion is creating engaging learning environments by bringing useful research results and industry practices into the classroom as well as using research results to inform engineering practice.

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Seungmo Kim Georgia Southern University Orcid 16x16


Vuk Marojevic Virginia Tech Orcid 16x16

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Vuk Marojevic received his M.S. from the University of Hannover, Germany, and his Ph.D. from the Universidad Politècnica de Catalunya—Barcelona Tech, Spain, both in electrical engineering. He joined Wireless@Virginia Tech in 2013, where he is currently a Research Assistant Professor. His research interests are in software-defined radio, spectrum sharing, 4G/5G cellular technology, wireless testbeds and testing, resource management, wireless security, and engineering education with application to mission-critical networks, vehicular networks, virtualized wireless networks, green communications, the Internet of Things, and unmanned aircraft systems. Dr. Marojevic has been instructor of undergraduate and graduate level classes at the Barcelona Tech and Virginia Tech. He is a member of the IEEE, ACM, and ASEE.

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Carl B. Dietrich Virginia Tech

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A licensed Professional Engineer in Virginia, Carl Dietrich earned a BS EE degree from Texas A&M University, and MS EE and PhD EE degrees from Virginia Tech. He has taught courses in software defined radio, communications systems, electronics, and electromagnetic fields. He has also taught short courses on software defined radio since 2007, covering fundamental concepts and enabling technologies in addition to the use of open source software to develop and run SDR applications. In addition, Dr. Dietrich has performed and directed research in the areas of cognitive radio, software defined radio (SDR), multi-antenna systems, and radio wave propagation, and has authored or co-authored more than 50 peer-reviewed journal and conference papers. He has worked at Virginia Tech, Bell Northern Research, and the Defense Information Systems Agency. He has served as chair of the Wireless Innovation Forum's Educational Special Interest Group, is a member of ASEE and Eta Kappa Nu, Senior Member of IEEE, and an Extra class amateur radio operator.

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The U.S. Government is in the process of implementing 2012 recommendations by the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) to share federal spectrum with non-federal users, a process that is projected to result in a Trillion dollars in societal benefits as well as related employment for millions. Related competitions such as DARPA’s Spectrum Challenge and Spectrum Collaboration Challenge encourage innovative approaches and help prepare the STEM professionals who will develop effective spectrum sharing radios and networks as well as spectrum access systems needed to realize the PCAST vision.

We describe experience gained and lessons learned through organization of two international radio spectrum coexistence competitions. In addition, we present an assessment of these competitions based on analysis of participant survey item responses addressing self-efficacy and engagement as well as participant recommendations.

We identify and discuss several important considerations in organizing and hosting this type of competition. These considerations include infrastructure comprising both hardware and software, recruitment of sponsors, timing of funding and publicity for the competition, recruitment of participants and advisors, software and hardware documentation and ease of use, technical support, logistics for the final competition, and documentation of the competition, and in particular the final competition, for use in publicizing the next year’s competition, if held yearly.

García Sheridan, J. A., & Goff, R. M., & Kim, S., & Marojevic, V., & Dietrich, C. B. (2018, June), Lessons Learned from a Radio Spectrum Coexistence Competition: A Road Map to Engagement in Informal Education of Wireless Communication Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--30761

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