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FCC Allocates 2 GHz Spectrum Chunk to Wireless Broadband

At Thursday's Open Meeting the FCC adopted a Report and Order (FCC 13-88) outlining service rules for the Advanced Wireless Services H Block. The AWS H Block consists of 10 MHz of paired spectrum: 5 MHz at 1915-1920 MHz and the rest at 1995-2000 MHz. The rules authorize flexible use of 1915-1920 MHz for mobile and low-power fixed operations (uplink) and 1995-2000 MHz for base and fixed stations (downlink). The rules contain restrictions on power and out-of-band emissions to protect operations in adjacent spectrum, particularly broadband PCS at 1930-1995 MHz.

While it is possible base station operations in 1995-2000 MHz band could cause brute force overload problems to nearby 2 GHz ENG receive antennas with little filtering, the 25 MHz separation from the BAS band should greatly reduce the potential for interference. Stringent out-of-band emission limits (70 + 10*LOG10(P) dB) designed to protect operations in the 2005-2020 MHz band will also help protect ENG receive sites. The Report and Order does not mention interference to broadcast auxiliary service (BAS) operations.

Because the 1995-2000 MHz band was part of the original 2 GHz BAS band reallocated by Sprint-Nextel, Block H licensees will have to reimburse Sprint for the cost of reallocating this part of the ENG band. The Report and Order puts total 1995-2000 MHz Block H relocation costs at $94,875,516, and provided formulas for calculation of each licensee's share.