ARRL

ARRL General Bulletin ARLB098 (1995)

SB QST @ ARL $ARLB098
ARLB098 1-year OK for RF lights

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ARRL Bulletin 98  ARLB098
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  October 27, 1995
To all radio amateurs 

SB QST ARL ARLB098
ARLB098 1-year OK for RF lights

The Federal Communications Commission has waived its rules to permit
the General Electric Company to begin marketing an ''RF lightbulb.''
The Commission waived, at GE's request, FCC Rules Part 18 limits on
the amount of RF energy that may be conducted into the electric
power lines by RF lighting devices in the band 2.2 to 2.8 MHz.

GE proposed marketing to consumers an unlimited number of  RF light
bulbs that comply with the conduction limits for non-consumer RF
lighting devices in this band.  (FCC rules already permit RF
lighting devices used in commercial environments to place this
signal level on the AC power lines).  The FCC said that there has
been ''no record of significant interference problems from the use
of these devices in commercial environments,'' and also said that
radio operations in the range 2.2 to 2.8 MHz ''are not normally
employed or intended for reception in residential environments.''

GE was granted a waiver for one year, and the FCC reserved the right
to revoke it if it determines that RF lighting devices operating
under the conditions of the waiver create ''severe interference
problems.''

Three years ago a California company, Intersource Technologies,
promoted an RF-powered lightbulb that operated at 13.56 MHz and was
designed, according to the company, to keep unintentional radiation
to a minimum (a story appeared in August 1992 QST, page 49).  A
25-watt RF bulb was said to generate as much visible light as a
100-watt conventional bulb.  These bulbs were never marketed.

The ARRL will obtain samples of the GE bulbs for testing as soon as
they are available.  ARRL Laboratory Supervisor Ed Hare, KA1CV, said
that the new bulbs should not, if properly designed, create any more
interference to Amateur Radio operations than fluorescent bulbs,
dimmer switches, or other similar devices found in the home.
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