ACMA plots amateur radio band harvest for LTE

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ACMA plots amateur radio band harvest for LTE

Preparing for TD-LTE auction in 2014.

The Australian Communications and Media Authority wants to use a small, 2 MHz radio frequency band to create a larger block of spectrum for future 4G transmissions, a move that could inconvenience thousands of radio amateurs currently using the range.

According to a consultation paper (pdf) on the proposed reallocation issued by the ACMA, the purpose is to have an even 100 MHz for the 2.3 GHz time division LTE (TD-LTE) spectrum.

Currently, the 2.3GHz spectrum has 98MHz which doesn't align well with the proposed 5MHz channels to be used for TD-LTE. An even 100MHz worth of spectrum would be more valuable for the government in an eventual auction.

While the 2300-2302 MHz is primarily used for fixed, mobile and radio-location service, there are no users doing it currently. However, the authority's Register of Radiocommunications has roughly 10,000 advanced amateur licensees that can use the 2300-2302 MHz spectrum, on a secondary basis.

Amateur radio set up. Source: Wikipedia

The 2400-2450, 2403-2406 and 2424-2425 MHz bands are proposed by ACMA as alternatives for the radio amateurs to use.

Spectrum licenses in the 2.3GHz band expire on July 24 2015 and ACMA has recommended to communications minister Stephen Conroy that the 2300-2302 MHz band is declared for paid licensing over a fifteen year period.

ACMA has posted an article on the reallocation, asking for views and submissions on it.

Submissions on the matter can also be emailed to ACMA.

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