As an outcome of the review of the 2.5 GHz band, the ACMA is developing arrangements to support the introduction of television outside broadcast (TOB) services into the frequency bands 1980-2110 MHz and 2170-2300 MHz and to support the conversion of existing 2.5 GHz television outside broadcast network apparatus licences to spectrum licences in the band 2570-2620 MHz.
Conversion plan for 2570-2620 MHz
The proposed regulatory framework to enable conversion of television outside broadcast network apparatus licences to spectrum licences in the band 2570-2620 MHz is available for comment. See IFC 26/2012.
Consultation on proposed arrangements for television outside broadcast services
The ACMA is currently considering responses to the April 2012 proposals for supporting different types of TOB applications, such as coverage of news events (also known as electronic news gathering) and coverage of planned events (such as sporting events), within the frequency bands 1980-2110 MHz and 2170-2300 MHz.
A decision on spectrum and channel arrangement for different types of TOB applications is anticipated late 2012.
Draft coordination arrangements for TOB services in the bands 1980-2010 MHz and 2170-2200 MHz
Draft coordination requirements for TOB services in the bands 1980-2010 MHz and 2170-2200 MHz are available for comment.
The coordination requirements reflect arrangements for interim use of the bands 1985-2010 MHz and 2175-2200 MHz outlined in the ACMA's April 2012 proposals supporting the introduction of television outside broadcast services into the bands 1980-2110 MHz and 2170-2300 MHz. It is intended to finalise coordination arrangements by late August and remove the requirement for case-by-case consideration, as required by the interim arrangements, of TOB usage in the bands 1980-2010 MHz and 2170-2200 MHz.
Comments are requested by 17 August 2012 by email to ENGprojects@acma.gov.au.
- Due to coordination requirements with adjacent band spectrum licensed services and apparatus licensed public mobile telecommunication services, TOB services are not to operate in the 1980-1985 MHz and 2170-2175 MHz frequency ranges.
- The ACMA is continuing to develop coordination arrangements to support the introduction of TOB services into the bands 1980-2110 MHz and 2170-2300 MHz.& Depending on the outcome of that work requirements for TOB services in bands 1980-2010 MHz and 2170-2200 MHz may be revised.
Frequency band plan for television outside broadcast services
On the 26 March 2012 the ACMA made the Television Outside Broadcast Service (1980-2110 MHz and 2170-2300 MHz) Frequency Band Plan 2012 (the TOB Band Plan) to support the introduction of TOB services in the frequency bands 1980-2110 MHz and 2170-2300 MHz.
The ACMA also revoked a number of existing frequency band plans to remove provisions that would of otherwise limited the operation of TOB services. The revoked plans are the:
Introduction of TOB services into the bands 1980-2110 MHz & 2170-2300 MHz
A range of existing services operate in and adjacent to the bands 1980-2110 MHz and 2170-2300 MHz including fixed point-to-point links, earth stations, defence aeronautical mobile telemetry systems, radioastronomy and spectrum licensed services. The operation of TOB services in those bands necessitates a range of restrictions and coordination arrangements with those services. In areas of high/frequent TOB operation, sharing is not considered possible and some existing services will be required to cease operation. Services required to cease operation are fixed point-to-point operations (around capital cites and some regional areas) by 1 November 2013 and earth station operations in Perth in the bands 2025-2110 MHz and 2200-2300 MHz by 1 January 2016.
The new spectrum arrangements in the bands alternative to the 2.5 GHz band will be implemented through a range of administrative policy documents and legal instruments. In consultation with TOB operators and other interested parties, it is envisaged that the following administrative policy documents and legislative instruments will be prepared or updated:
- Radiocommunications assignment and licensing instruction (RALI) on television outside broadcast (TOB) services. The RALI TOB will specify frequency coordination and licensing requirements for TOB services operating in the 1980-2110 MHz and 2170-2300 MHz bands;
- A band plan under section 32 of the Radiocommunications Act to support the introduction of ENG services, clearance of fixed point-to-point links and the cessation of Earth-station operations in the bands 2025-2110 MHz and 2200-2300 MHz in Perth (Landsdale/Gnangara). See IFC 36/2011;
- The revocation of existing frequency band plans to remove conflicting provisions that would otherwise limit the operation of TOB services. These are :
- the 1900-1920 MHz and 2010-2025 MHz Bands Frequency Band Plan 2004 1;
- the Mobile-Satellite Service (2 GHz) Frequency Band Plan 2002 (the MSS Band Plan) 2; and
- the 2.1 GHz Band Frequency Band Plan 2002 3.
- Amendments to the technical frameworks for the 2 GHz spectrum licences;
- Amendments to the technical frameworks for the 2.3 GHz spectrum licences;
- Amendments to microwave fixed point to point links arrangements (RALI FX3);
- Amendments to public telecommunications service (PTS) arrangements in the 1920-1980 MHz and 2110-2170 MHz bands (RALI MS 33); and
- Amendments to RALI MS3 Spectrum Embargoes.
Conversion of 2.5 GHz TOBN apparatus licences to spectrum licences
The process for conversion of existing 2.5 GHz television outside broadcast network apparatus licences to spectrum licences in the band 2570-2620 MHz includes developing a spectrum licence technical framework consisting of:
- The Conversion Plan, including the Draft Licence;
- Definition of geographic area
- Licensed frequencies
- Out-of-area emission limits
- Out-of-band emission limits
- The Section 145 Determination of Unacceptable Interference;
- The level of protection at the licence geographic boundary
- Definition of required device registrations
- The Section 262 Advisory Guidelines
- Minimum receiver performance
- Advice to avoid interference to and from services in neighbouring bands
The development of the technical framework will be through a series of discussion papers and, as this is a conversion process (rather than an auction), it will be in consultation with the existing TOBN licensees within the band (the commercial free-to-air broadcasters and the ABC). However, adjacent channel issues and the relevant radiocommunications advisory guidelines will also be addressed in the spectrum licence technical liaison group supporting the development of the technical framework for the 2.5 GHz band (2500-2570/2620-2690 MHz).
1 See www.comlaw.gov.au/Series/F2005B00108
2 See Mobile-Satellite Services Band Plan (2 GHz) at www.comlaw.gov.au/Series/F2005B00120
3 See 2.1 GHz Band Plan www.comlaw.gov.au/Series/F2005B00121