The ACMA has established a PMTS Class C apparatus licence option within the PTS apparatus licence type specifically for mobile communication services on aircraft.
The PMTS Class C licence authorises the in-flight operation of any Civil Aviation Safety Authority approved on-board system and limited terrestrial operation of the on-board system to enable testing and maintenance within non-spectrum licensed space.
Conditions relating to use of on-board systems
Within geographic areas and frequencies that are spectrum licensed, on-board systems may be operated under third party agreements with spectrum licence holders. These requirements apply to both Australian and foreign registered aircraft.
Technical conditions imposed on the PMTS Class C apparatus licence including the frequencies for operation, emission limits and minimum operating height are specified by way of conditions imposed under paragraph 107(1)(g) of the Radiocommunications Act 1992 on individual licences. While foreign registered aircraft are not as a matter of international and Australian law required to obtain a PMTS Class C licence, the use of onboard systems on such aircraft while operating over Australian territory is subject to the technical and operating conditions set out in applicable Australian regulations.
Detailed information about fees applicable to the PMTS Class C licence is provided in the Apparatus Licence Fee Schedule.
Application for a PMTS Class C licence
Information about the application process for PMTS Class C licences is available.
On receiving an application for a PMTS Class C apparatus licence, the ACMA may engage in consultation with mobile telecommunications carriers and CASA if a new system or operational height is proposed to ensure the proposed system (based on technical details supplied by prospective licensees) does not present any safety or interference issues.
Additional background information regarding the development of the new PMTS Class C apparatus licence type is available.