FCC seeks comment on NPRM with implications for 2GHz

The FCC released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking July 23 aimed at making more spectrum available for Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) from four bands: the 1695MHz-1710MHz, 1755MHz-1780MHz, 2020MHz-2025MHz and 2155MHz-2180MHz bands.

The massive proposed rulemaking and Order on Reconsideration has important implications for broadcasters who rely on the 2025MHz-2110MHz for Broadcast Auxiliary Service (BAS) operation to support electronic newsgathering.

While not identified among the four bands under consideration, the FCC makes clear that it is seeking comment on potential changes to its Table of Frequency Allocations to bring about reconfiguration ideas in the notice, as well as alternates. Specifically, the Department of Defense has identified the 2025MHz-2110MHz band as its preferred destination for relocated operations currently in the 1755 MHz-850MHz band.

Similarly, CTIA has proposed making 2095MHz-2110MHz available for commercial use. The commission acknowledged objections from SBE to this concept. “SBE states that allowing commercial use of 2095-2110MHz, as CTIA suggests, would delete two of seven shared channels used heavily for BAS, LTTS, and Cable Television Relay Service,” the proposed rulemaking says.

The rulemaking also notes the SBE offered the opinion that other sources of 15MHz of contiguous spectrum should be examined, such as 2360MHz-2390MHz. The FCC is seeking comment on the proposals.

The rulemaking also addresses and seeks comment on potential interference between the 2025MHz-2110MHz band, used for BAS and CARS, and the 2020MHz-2025MHz AWS band. In separate proceeding, the Engineers for the Integrity of Broadcast Auxiliary Services Spectrum (EIBASS) said it did not object to “a 43 + 10 log10 (P)dB OOBE attenuation factor above 2025MHz from low-power, mobile-type devices,” according to the rulemaking. The FCC is proposing to apply that standard above 2025MHz and is seeking comments. The agency noted that EIBASS, however, did argue that greater protection would be necessary if the band were used for high-power base stations.

Comments are due to the commission Sept. 18. The reply comment deadline is Oct. 16.