Latest reports from the ACMA’s Field Operations staff
The ACMA responds to HF radio interference (6 Jun)
The ACMA has responded to reports of interference being caused on licensed HF radio networks by unlicensed users and non compliant equipment. Over the past six months, Inspectors from ACMA’s Field Operations Section have uncovered a broad range of breaches of the Radiocommunications Act 1992. More ...
More unlicensed broadcasting stations shut down (5 Mar)
The recent need to shut down a number of unlicensed radio stations has prompted the ACMA to remind the community that licences are mandatory for all broadcasting stations operating on the AM or FM broadcast bands. More ...
ACMA downs Interference in straight sets at the Australian Open (20 Jan)
In the opening days of the Australian Open Tennis, ACMA Field Operations staff have been busy resolving a variety of interference issues with on site radio communications devices. Equipment providers using incorrect frequencies and power settings have been identified as causing several of the problems. With a world wide audience, the larger television and radio broadcasters traditionally work together on spectrum related technical issues to ensure an interference free event. But with many small broadcasters coming from overseas to cover the event, there is a risk for some equipment that is not compliant with Australia standards to sneak through. The ACMA coordinates all requests for frequency allocations for special events such as the Australian Open and F1GP.
Amateurs need to play by the rules (16 Jan)
Amateur radio operators have been put on notice by the ACMA that they need to abide by the law following the successful prosecution of an operator from Melbourne’s western suburbs. More ...
Interference to Optus 3G mobile phone site on Thursday Island (2 Dec)
Field Operations staff regularly face new challenges and experiences as they travel across Australia to resolve interference issues. A recent expedition to Thursday Island is a good example of the range and diversity of work in the Field Operations Section. More ...
ACMA supports CHOGM 2011 (15 Nov)
Staff from the ACMA's Operations Branch successfully supported the 22nd meeting of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM), held in Perth from 28 to 30 October. Our role was to detect and resolve any interference to radiocommunications devices. More ...
ACMA Inspectors issue warning notices to unlicensed radio Communications enthusiasts (10 Nov)
Inspectors from the ACMA’s Field Operations Sections have issued warning notices to six radio communications hobbyists citing breaches of the Radiocommunications Act 1992. The hobbyists, comprising Citizen Band (CB) and Amateur Radio operators from Tasmania, Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia, were operating on High Frequency (HF) frequencies outside the radio bands they were authorised to use. In addition to the issuing of warning notices, a number of non compliant radio communications devices were surrendered to the ACMA.
Operating non compliant or modified radio communications equipment on frequency bands contrary to that specified by a licence condition, has the potential to cause serious interference to radio communications services. While the ACMA prefers to educate those who operate outside licence conditions, the ACMA will suspend or cancel licences, issue infringement notices, or commence prosecutions for more serious offences.
Preparations for the Perth and Hobart analogue to digital switchover (2 Nov)
Officers from ACMA's Field Operations Section will today begin measurements in Perth and Hobart in preparation for switchover from analogue to digital television in early 2013. Using purpose built field survey vehicles, the measurements are expected to take around 14 weeks. Field Operations officers are also currently undertaking similar surveys in Brisbane.
Unlicensed cellular mobile repeater devices (12 Oct)
While investigating interference to mobile phone networks, the ACMA’s Field Operations section located six unlicensed cellular mobile repeater devices. The devices, which were purchased by their owners with the intention of improving mobile phone coverage, had been sourced from overseas via online trading websites.
Five devices used at an industrial site in Victoria and one device at a private residence in NSW were causing interference to mobile phone networks resulting in call dropouts. Each was illegally operating without permission from the respective mobile carriers and all of the devices found are no longer in operation.
The ACMA is currently seeking public comments on a discussion paper regarding a proposed regulatory approach to cellular mobile repeaters. The discussion paper can be downloaded from the ACMA’s website.
ACMA Inspectors shut down pirate AM broadcasting station (5 Oct)
ACMA inspectors have shut down an unlicensed AM broadcasting station operating from Chadstone, in Melbourne’s south eastern suburbs. The station, operating on 1485 kHz could be heard for up to 10 kms, and had been broadcasting for the past week, mainly in the evenings. The unlicensed station was rebroadcasting music from the MyMP digital station. Following a complaint, Inspectors from ACMA’s Field Operations Section used advanced direction finding equipment to pin point the exact location of the transmitter.