ARRL

ARRL General Bulletin ARLB035 (2002)

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ARLB035 FCC Invites Public Comments on New Amateur Band Proposals

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ARRL Bulletin 35  ARLB035
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  June 18, 2002
To all radio amateurs 

SB QST ARL ARLB035
ARLB035 FCC Invites Public Comments on New Amateur Band Proposals

Public comments on FCC proposals to create two new amateur bands and
to create a new Amateur Service primary allocation in the vicinity
of 2.4 GHz are due July 29, and reply comments are due by August 12.
In response to an ARRL petition, the FCC last month released a
Notice of Proposed Rule Making (ET Docket 02-98) that proposed to
create a new 5-MHz HF allocation and a new low-frequency band in the
vicinity of 136 kHz in addition to elevating amateurs from secondary
to primary at 2400 to 2402 MHz.

The FCC adopted the NPRM May 2 on a unanimous vote. The NPRM was
published June 14 in The Federal Register. A copy of the petition is
available on the ARRL Web site,
http://www.arrl.org/announce/regulatory/et02-98/ .

Interested parties may file comments via the FCC's Electronic
Comment Filing System (ECFS) website,
http://www.fcc.gov/e-file/ecfs.html .  Click on ''Search for Filed
Comments'' and enter ''02-98'' in the ''Proceeding'' field. All comments
and other correspondence--plus a copy of the NPRM--are available for
viewing via the ECFS.

If the proposals eventually are approved, amateurs would gain a new,
secondary, domestic (US-only) HF allocation at 5.25 to 5.40 MHz and
a new LF ''sliver band'' at 135.7 to 137.8 kHz. The 5 MHz band would
be the first new HF allocation since the early 1980s, when amateurs
got 30, 17 and 12 meters. The LF allocation would be the first ever
for US hams.

The Commission has recommended permitting amateurs to operate at
full legal limit on a new 5-MHz allocation, but it left open for
further discussion whether to restrict band access to certain
license classes. The FCC also has invited further comment on whether
the band should be broken down into mode-specific subbands. The band
5.250 to 5.450 MHz now is allocated worldwide to Fixed and Mobile
services on a co-primary basis.

On 136 kHz, the FCC has proposed limiting output to 1 W effective
isotropic radiated power (EIRP) with a transmission bandwidth of
only 100 Hz and limiting access to the band to General and
higher-class licensees.
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