Institute for Telecommunication Sciences
the research laboratory of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration

What We Do

The Institute for Telecommunication Sciences (ITS) is the research and engineering laboratory of NTIA. We perform advanced communications research to inform spectrum policy and develop capabilities to solve emerging telecommunications issues. We serve as a principal Federal resource for solving the telecommunications concerns of other Federal agencies, state and local Governments, industry, and international organizations. We work to continually advance the state of the art in radio frequency (RF) propagation measurement, RF propagation modeling, spectrum monitoring and enforcement, electromagnetic compatibility analysis, interference mitigation strategies, evaluation of end-user experience, and engineering analysis of evolving technologies to manage and share spectrum efficiently. Learn more about ITS on our YouTube Channel or read about our research programs in the FY 2017 Technical Progress Report.


May 9, 2019

ITS has a long history of leadership in air-to-ground propagation model development within the International Telecommunications Union – Radiocommunication Sector’s (ITU-R) Study Group 3 – Radiowave Propagation (and its...

March 10, 2019

How can we get more use out of the radio spectrum? One way is by sharing radio bands between users who have never shared before. Consider radio frequencies near 3.5 GHz. Until recently, that part of the spectrum was...

November 26, 2018

Behind every initiative to share spectrum are models of how radio waves in a particular band propagate through different environments. How far will a signal travel before it becomes too faint to be useful or...

August 7, 2018

The record attendance (nearly 170 experts from government, academia, and industry) at the 17th International Symposium on Advanced Radio Technologies (ISART) demonstrated the deep interest in the problem of modeling...

April 24, 2018

As demand for spectrum for commercial use continues to grow, policymakers are exploring spectrum sharing as a way to expand capacity while still fulfilling the needs of federal agencies. This model can work only if rules...

New Publications

This Month in ITS History

July 1907: John Howard Dellinger Begins his NBS Career

On July 3, 1907, John Howard Dellinger was officially appointed to the National Bureau of Standards. S.W. Stratton, the director of the Bureau, met with Dellinger and recommended him to the post of Laboratory Assistant in a letter to the Secretary of Commerce and Labor. Dellinger began his duties on his 21st birthday. After a few years of service he took a sabbatical to attain his PhD., but returned to the Bureau on its completion. Dellinger rose through the Bureau ranks quickly, becoming the Chief of the Radio Section in 1919, and gaining the nickname Dr. D from his staff. He remained head of the laboratory, which grew into the Central Radio Propagation Laboratory, until 1948 when he retired. During his tenure he published over 140 papers in his own name, primarily on radio propagation and interference, but also on subjects ranging from electrical impedance to Planck's constant. Dellinger directed the work of the Radio Section from its rapid growth in the 1920s, through World War II when the Bureau was immersed in inventing and testing military technology. Dellinger is known for his leadership role in international organizations such as the IRE, the IEEE, USRI, and CCIR (precursor to ITU-R). The Dellinger Effect, which he described, and the Dellinger crater on the moon are named in his honor. ITS leadership continues to follow in Dellinger's footsteps, publishing independently, mentoring other researchers, supporting international cooperation, and widely disseminating the results of their research to the public.