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Automation of the Spectrum, Automation and the Spectrum: Legal Challenges When Optimising Spectrum Use for Military Operations


The role of the electromagnetic spectrum in all manner of military operations is increasing. The same can be said for all aspects of our everyday civilian lives. Consequently, demand on the spectrum, both by the military and for civilian purposes, is increasing. The spectrum, while fully renewable, is not unlimited at any one point in time and allocation of the spectrum for optimum utilisation is key. This is raising a range of issues. Questions arise both because of the role of autonomous capabilities in devices that make use of the spectrum, which have the potential to create demand and interference challenges, and because of the valuable role that autonomous capabilities may play in managing the spectrum itself. This paper looks at attempts to use automation technologies to better utilise and manage the spectrum while noting the challenges created by signal interference and the ‘dual-use’ nature of this valuable resource.

Published: 2021-11-08
Pages:91 to 106
Section: Articles
How to Cite
Massingham, Eve. 2021. “Automation of the Spectrum, Automation and the Spectrum: Legal Challenges When Optimising Spectrum Use for Military Operations”. Law, Technology and Humans 3 (2):91-106.

Author Biography

University of Queensland
Australia Australia

Dr Eve Massingham is a Senior Research Fellow with the School of Law, The University of Queensland. Eve's current research focuses on the diverse ways in which the law constrains or enables autonomous functions of military platforms, systems and weapons. She is the co-editor of Ensuring Respect for International Humanitarian Law (Routledge, 2020) and she has published a number of book chapters and journal articles in the fields of international humanitarian law and international law and the use of force. Prior to joining the University of Queensland, Eve worked for the International Red Cross and Red Cross Movement for ten years, including as the International Committee of the Red Cross' Regional Legal Adviser for East Africa and as an International Humanitarian Law officer for Australian Red Cross. She began her career at (then) Freehills (admitted 2004) and was an Associate to Justice Collier at the Federal Court of Australia. Eve has also served as an Australian Army Reserve Officer. Eve holds a Bachelor of Law (Hons) from Queensland University of Technology, a Master of International and Community Development from Deakin University, an LLM (Distinction) from King's College London and a PhD from the University of Queensland.

Open Access Journal
ISSN 2652-4074