This July, testing is scheduled to formally begin in 20 high rise buildings located in Atlanta, Chicago and San Francisco. The Alliance for Telecommunications Industry Solutions (ATIS) will serve as the Program Manager for these tests.
“Stage Za (Altitude – Z-axis) – As a next step from the initial Stage Z test conducted in 2018, the Test Bed LLC seeks to evaluate the performance of wide-area location systems that determine the altitude of a 9-1-1 caller. The results of Stage Za will inform wireless providers and public safety stakeholders about solutions that can meet any requirements established by FCC’s forthcoming Z-axis metric.”
A number of companies have or are working on solutions – including the use of WiFi databases as reference points.
In 2015, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission required the wireless providers establish an independent test bed. Now know as Test Bed LLC, (established on behalf of the wireless carriers by CTIA) it is available to vendors of “new or emerging location technologies that can demonstrate how those technologies might enable wireless providers to meet the new enhanced location accuracy requirements through improved horizontal location technologies or providing accurate vertical information (e.g., z axis).”