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Compromise Close On FSS/Radar Spectrum Issue At WRC

By | June 19, 2003

      The U.S. and European delegations are close to a compromise on lowering the minimum dish size for fixed satellite services (FSS) in the 13.75-14 GHz band in exchange for power limits to reduce interference with U.S. military radars that operate in the same band. The compromise is in the works at the International Telecommunication Union’s World Radiocommunication Conference in Geneva, the U.S. ambassador to the conference, Janice Obuchowski, told journalists during a briefing Thursday.

      The United States had opposed efforts by Europe and other regions to lower the minimum FSS dish size below the current limit of 4.5 meters in diameter because of the interference risk that the smaller size could cause military radar systems. The smaller dish requires a higher-powered satellite to receive the signal, she explained. “We are looking at [power] values that could protect U.S. naval radar in that band,” she said. The Europeans seem willing to consider a “more conservative approach in protecting U.S. radar systems,” she added.

      On the spectrum allocation issue for aeronautical mobile satellite service (MSS), such as Connexion by Boeing, the ambassador said that the allocation issue has been worked out. The service will be able to use the 14 to 14.5 GHz band on a “secondary” basis. “It’s out of the allocation committee, and they are looking at regulatory details now,” she said. “We see smooth progress at this point.”

      For more coverage on the WRC, see the June 23 issue of SATELLITE NEWS. For information on subscribing to PBI Media’s satellite newsletters, check out our Web site at

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