Doug Lung /
FCC Revises Rules to Allow 2.3 GHz Wireless Broadband Services
Last week the FCC released Order
on Reconsideration FCC 12-130 modifying restrictions on use of
the Wireless Communications Service (WCS) frequencies in the 2.3 GHz that made
it difficult if not impossible for licensees to use them for broadband wireless
while at the same time protecting Satellite Digital Audio Radio Service (SDARS)
receivers in the adjacent band from interference. The Order follows a compromise
between AT&T Sirius XM Radio reached earlier this year.
will enable the use of 30 MHz of spectrum in the 2.3 GHz band for wireless
broadband, with 20 MHz available for mobile broadband services and 10
MHz for fixed broadband services. SiriusXM Radio benefits with relaxed rules on
licensee notifications for low-power terrestrial repeaters and for minor
modifications to repeaters. Along with the change in the rules, WCS licensees
received a limited extension of construction deadlines. The Order restarts the
WCS construction periods, enabling WCS licensees to respond to the rule
revisions while ensuring significant deployment of facilities in the near term.
SDARS uses the center of the 2.3 GHz band, 2320-2345 MHz,
while WCS uses 2305-2320 MHz and 2345-2360 MHz.
The FCC declined to modify site-by-site licensing procedures
for high power SDARS terrestrial repeaters not eligible for blanket licensing –
those with EIRP above 12 kW, for example.
In general, WCS fixed and base stations are limited to 2,000
watts average power per 5 MHz of bandwidth. The rules for allowed power for all
transmitters operating in the WCS bands are complicated and depend on the
location and out-of-band emission performance. Refer to the Order on
Consideration for details.