IEEE 802.15.4p Rail Communications and Control – Getting Ready for the Mainline!

IEEE 802.15.4p task group has just completed letter ballot and has been approved to move forward to Sponsor Ballot. The participants within the IEEE group have been terrific – engaged, collaborative, and flexible.
The group includes 90 participants from around 70 private companies, academic institutions and US and foreign government transportation entities. Every milestone denoted on the schedule established back in fall 2011 has been met or exceeded.
We met the requirement that 75% of the current 802.15 Working Group voters must participate in the vote. “Yes” votes comprised over 96% of the returned ballots. Comments may be submitted by any voter, but must be submitted by any “no” voter. The comments received during this letter ballot were a good mix of technical and editorial and should be able to be resolved over the next several weeks.
What all this means is that there’s a high probability of getting the standard released by the end of the year or in January 2014. It appears that there are several companies out there which may be releasing a compliant product shortly after the spec release.
To our participants, keep up the steady progress and collaboration. To the rail operators, be prepared for train wireless data communications that are based on open international standards.