FCC Seeks Comments on Newly Proposed Rules for Amateur Radio Operators Using Spread Spectrum Communications
In March, the FCC released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) that proposed to amend Part 97 to facilitate the use of spread spectrum communications technologies by eliminating the requirement that amateur stations use automatic power control (APC) to reduce transmitter power when the station transmits a spread spectrum (SS) emission, and reducing the maximum transmitter power output when transmitting a SS emission (WT Docket No 10-62). On May 14, a summary of the NPRM and the Order was published in the Federal Register; the FCC is seeking comments on the NPRM. Comments must be filed on or before June 14, 2010 (30 days after publication in the Federal Register); reply comments must be filed on or before June 28, 2010 (45 days after publication in the Federal Register). Instructions on how to file comments are listed beginning on page 5 of the NPRM. The Commission also attached an Order to the NPRM that makes certain non-substantive revisions to Part 97. According to the FCC, the rules are necessary to amend the Amateur Service rules or conform them to prior Commission decisions, enhancing the usefulness of the Amateur Service rules by making them conform with other Commission rules, thereby eliminating licensee confusion when applying the rules to Amateur Service operations. The new rules will take effect July 13, 2010.