SBE petitions FCC for TV BAS Channel A10 replacement

The Society of Broadcast Engineers has filed a petition for reconsideration with the FCC calling on the commission to establish three 12MHz wide digital channels that would replace existing grandfathered TV BAS operations to eliminate interference it anticipates arising from FCC action to accommodate Mobile Satellite Service band requirements.

According to the SBE filing, the commission seriously underestimated the interference that will occur between grandfathered TV broadcast auxiliary service (BAS) operations at 2483.5–2500MHz and the new MSS ancillary terrestrial component (ATC) operations at 2487.5–2,493MHz as well as the new BRS1 operations at 2496–2502MHz.

According the Sept. 8 filing, co-channel MSS ATC base stations and grandfathered operations on TV BAS channel A10 could never co-exist in the same area due to co-channel interference. While it’s possible through careful frequency coordination to keep ATC base stations away from 2GHz or 2.5GHz ENG receive-only sites to prevent interference, it is impossible to make co-channel TV BAS and ATC possible in the same operating area, the filing said.

The filing said that broadcast and cable networks make heavy use of TV BAS Channel A10 during coverage of sports events. Many TV stations hold TV Pickup licenses with Channel A10 grandfather rights, and rely on it to make frequency coordination possible.

In its filing, the SBE urged the commission to act quickly to solve these issues because of the imminent replacement of 2GHz TV BAS radios by Nextel that is part of the commission’s band clearing plan for emergency communications and first responders.

According to the SBE, commission action on its proposal may actually save Nextel a portion of what it would otherwise have spent for replacement radios because of the $1000 that would be spent on the analog component of such a radio would be unnecessary under the SBE plan.

The SBE proposed that the cost of the portion of the new radios to comply with the plan be divided between MSS ATC and BRS1 on a 58 percent, 42 percent basis.

To read the filing, visit

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