PRSS Strongly Recommends Stations Confirm FCC Registration Status

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The PRSS wishes to alert stations of a possible upcoming FCC action that could impact your station’s satellite operations.

The FCC is undertaking an inquiry that would potentially introduce broadband and mobile services into the C-band satellite spectrum (the frequencies PRSS uses for satellite-to-earth station downloads).  There is a significant chance any FCC action to permit wireless broadband access to C-band spectrum could result in interference to unregistered/unlicensed satellite C-band earth station terminals.  Therefore, stations are strongly encouraged to ensure their C-band earth station terminals are registered/licensed with the FCC to provide better data about current utilization of the C-band and try to avoid their C-band spectrum being compromised.

One plan the FCC is considering is a joint proposal by Intel and Intelsat for a “market-based approach” that would split up the C-band spectrum between satellite and wireless broadband in terms of geography and frequency. If your station is located in a particular designated geographical area, and there are no C-band satellite earth station terminals officially registered or licensed with the FCC in that area, you could lose some or all of your expected C-band satellite spectrum protection.  Your satellite earth station terminal could then begin to experience interference from wireless broadband uses. 

According to the National Association of Broadcasters, the FCC has noted there are only 4,700 registered/licensed C-band users, suggesting that the Commission believes the spectrum is currently underutilized.  The NAB went on to say it believes a majority of receive-only C-band earth stations are not FCC registered, which holds the potential for a substantial amount of stations being affected. 

All broadcasters with C-band earth station terminals are strongly urged to confirm they are registered/licensed with the FCC.  The typical process involves conducting a frequency coordination study and completing a FCC filing.

Any station that wishes to clarify whether or not it is FCC registered/licensed can contact NPRSS Engineer Mike Kirk, who will confirm your status. If your station is registered, then you need take no further action. If your station is not registered, Mike can assist you in getting your C-band earth station terminal registered/licensed at a discount available to PRSS interconnected stations. Mike can be reached at mkirk@npr.org.

If you have any additional questions, please contact the PRSS Help Desk at 800.971.7677 or prsshelp@npr.org.

 

Posted: January 24, 2018