In the Matter of AMENDMENT OF PARTS 2, 89, AND 91 OF THE COMMISSION'S RULES TO PROVIDE FOR THE EXPANDED USE OF SIGNALING DEVICES ON A REGULAR BASIS; PETITION FILED BY THE CENTRAL COMMITTEE ON COMMUNICATIONS FACILITIES OF THE AMERICAN PETROLEUM INSTITUTE TO PERMIT USE OF FREQUENCIES LISTED UNDER SECTION 91.8(j) OF THE RULES FOR REMOTE CONTROL AND TELEMETERING IN THE OPERATIONAL FIXED SERVICE; PETITION FILED BY THE NATIONAL COMMITTEE FOR UTILITIES RADIO TO PERMIT USE OF FIVE FEEQUENCIES LISTED UNDER SECTION 91.8(j) OF THE RULES FOR REMOTE CONTROL AND TELEMETERING IN THE OPERATIONAL FIXED AND MOBILE SERVICE; PETITION OF FOREST INDUSTRIES RADIO COMMUNICATIONS FOR AMENDMENT OF SECTION 91.354 OF THE RULES TO ADD THE FREQUENCY 154.600 Mc/s FOR REMOTE CONTROL PURPOSES
Docket No. 17228; RM-390; RM-458; RM-906
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
9 F.C.C.2d 839 (1967); 10 Rad. Reg. 2d (P & F) 628
RELEASE NUMBRE: FCC 67-993
August 30, 1967 Adopted
JUDGES: BY THE COMMISSION: COMMISSIONER COX DISSENTING AND ISSUING A STATEMENT IN WHICH COMMISSIONER JOHNSON JOINS; COMMISSIONER WADSWORTH ABSENT.
REPORT AND ORDER
1. On February 21, 1967, the Commission released a notice of proposed rulemaking (FCC 67-228, 32 F.R. 3301) in the above-entitled mattter. The proposals contained therein provided for the use by various Industrial Services of six "splinter" frequencies in the 154- and 173-Mc/s band for telemetering and remote control operations. One "splinter" channel would be made available to the Local Government Radio Service for emergency callbox purposes. In addition, the Forest Products Radio Service would be permitted access to the Business frequency 154.600 Mc/s for transmission of audio tones to control remote objects and devices as well as for voice communication. Interested parties were invited to file comments on or before March 24, 1967, and reply comments on or before April 10, 1967.
2. Comments were received from the Central Committee on Communication Facilities of the American Petroleum Institute (API), Forest Industries Radio Communications (FIRC), Land Mobile Section of Electronic Industries Association (EIA), National Committee for Utilities Radio (NCUR), Motorola, Inc., Detroit Edison Co., Cincinnati Gas & Electric Co., and the Special Industrial Radio Service Association (SIRSA). Reply comments were received from Spencer-Kennedy Laboratories of California, Inc., Bruce C. McCallum (individual), Associated Public Safety Communications Officers, Inc. (APCO), and the Nevada Department of Highways.
3. In general, the comments supported our proposal to make these channels available for fixed and mobile tone signaling as the most effective use of these narrow channels. Bruce C. McCallum opposed the proposal and argued that we should use the 22.5 kc/s of spectrum in the 154-Mc/s band to create two 15-kc/s channels and allocate them to base and mobile operations. We have considered this argument and we are unable to determine that two 15-kc/s channels could be created and effectively utilized within the space available.
4. EIA, with APCO and SIRSA concurring, proposes that greater latitude be permitted for both the maximum modulating frequency and the maximum frequency deviation or swing to permit full occupancy of the narrow channels. NCUR proposed that the audio limitation for low-power mobile FM systems be extended to 1500 c/s. API suggested that equipment would operate more suitably with an allowable 2-kc/s deviation on the 7.5-kc/s channels. We are adopting these proposals in certain respects and the standards being established will permit the use of higher frequency tones if the deviation or swing is adjusted accordingly. The sum of the maximum audio frequency and the deviation or swing will be 2800 c/s in the 7.5-kc/s frequency bands and 1700 c/s in the two 5-kc/s frequency bands.
5. Cincinnati Gas & Electric suggests a tighter frequency tolerance to 0.0002 percent and allowance of modulation frequencies up to 300 c/s in the 7.5-kc/s frequency bands, with a deviation of 1 kc/s. While this would permit voice operation, the results of developmental operations do not technically support the use of this type of system in such narrow channels.
6. As suggested by the comments of Spencer-Kennedy Laboratories, frequency shift keying will be permitted, but the proposed to divide the 7.5-kc/s frequency bands into two channels appears premature. Accordingly, only one 7.5-kc/s frequency band will be available for callbox use at this time.
7. A consensus of the comments suggests that the power proposed for fixed stations is more than necessary for operation, particularly if directional antennas are required. Accordingly, the rules will provide for a power of 50 w into the antenna for fixed use other than for local shaving in the Power Radio Service and emergency callbox use in the Local Government Radio Service, where powers of 300 and 20 w, respectively, will be provided.
8. EIA and SIRSA recommend provision for omnidirectional antennas in callbox communications, inasmuch as callboxes are usually scattered, or multiple monitoring stations may be employed. The two associations recommended a 20-w imput to the antenna. APCO concurs with EIA in specifying the input power at 20 w for callboxes with omnidirectional antennas. Emergency callbox use will be limited to a maximum of 20 w into the antenna and omnidirectional antennas may be used. Pending further development of this use, acknowledgment systems will not be authorized in the callbox frequency band.
9. NCUR urges that the 154.460-154.4675-Mc/s band be made available for directional fixed and low-power mobile operations in addition to multiple address fixed use. Since this frequency band is to be allocated exclusively to the Power Radio Service and will be subject to frequency coordination, directional fixed and low-power mobile operations will be permitted. Directional fixed stations will be limited to locations outside urbanized areas of 200,000 or more population.
10. FIRC requested that on-off carrier tone modulated equipment used in woods operations be permitted 3 w of output power, inasmuch as 1 w would not be sufficient for some types of operations. The mobile power has been changed to permit a maximum of 3 w output in the Forest Products Radio Service and 1 w output in all the remaining services.
11. In regard to the sharing of the four 173-Mc/s frequencies, API and SIRSA recommend establishing a method of coordination, or placing the applications for these frequencies on public notice in accordance with section 309(b)(2)(g) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended. Interservice coordination will be required for all fixed station use of the frequency bands that are shared between radio services. Coordination will also be required within each service except in the Business Radio Service. While no formal system of interservice coordination is being established at this time, we expect users of the shared frequencies to cooperate in maintaining interservice coordination. Fixed stations will be authorized for operation at temporary locations where adequate frequency coordination is obtained.
12. The comments received indicate that there are many needs in the several industries affected for fixed and mobile tone signaling frequencies. Several of the comments supported the allocation of additional space for the land mobile services; however, nothing filed suggested ways that the 7.5- and 5-kc/s channels could be used for two-way mobile service communications. Accordingly, it appears that the proposals set forth in the notice and as modified on the basis of comments received would provide for efficient utilization of the subject frequencies.
13. Therefore, pursuant to authority contained in sections 4 (i) and 303 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, It is ordered, That, effective October 12, 1967, parts 2, 89, and 91 of the Commission's rules Are amended. It is further ordered, That the proceedings in docket No. 17228 are hereby Terminated.
14. It is further ordered, That all licensees of developmental facilities operating on frequencies set forth in the rule changes ordered herein make necessary frequency changes on or before October 1, 1968.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION, BEN F. WAPLE, Secretary.
I must dissent from the decision of the majority in this matter for the reasons pointed out in my separate statement associated with the notice of proposed rulemaking issued in this proceeding (FCC 67-228, 32 F.R. 3301). However, I am further amplifying my position to set forth more clearly what I believe to be the true import of the Commission's decision.
The frequencies under consideration are really not "splinter frequencies" as the majority indicates. In the 154-Mc band involved in this proceeding there are three existing regular land mobile channels allocated -- 154.445 Mc to the Fire Service, 154.490 Mc to the Special Industrial Service, and 154.540 Mc to the Business Service. I submit that, with 95 kc of spectrum space available between the first and last assignments just mentioned, it is feasible to arrange for several additional land mobile channels. No one would think of proposing that we take the Special Industrial channel centered on 154.490 kc and convert it to fixed usage. Instead, it is suggested that we take 15 kc from the lower edge of this channel and 7.5 kc from the upper edge of the adjoining channel and divide the resultant 22.5 kc into three channels. To make it sound innocuous, the frequencies involved are termed "splinters." However, this particular channelization is not forced upon us by the laws of nature. These "splinters" have been manufactured by the Commission to provide primarily for the specialized fixed service uses of certain industries which supported the proposal. I recognize that they have been given developmental authorizations and may have spent substantial funds, but I do not believe that this justifies intruding fixed operations into this part of the spectrum. These are not scrap frequencies, as the "splinter" terminology suggests. They are just like any other frequencies in this band, and I am convinced that better use can be made of them which would be more consistent with existing allocations -- and with possible long-range reallocation of the band for more efficient mobile use.
Throughout the land mobile bands there are certain nonstandard frequency separations at various band-edges between services. Unless the Commission does something to make such spectrum useful for land mobile service, I believe that it will be only a matter of time until someone will want to make "splinters" out of some of them for specialized fixed uses. I am sure that someone would like to make such use of any spectrum that can be found, just as is true of the frequencies here being diverted from purposes which can only be served by radio. In any event, the carving out of "splinter" channels for primarily fixed service destroys the capability of making use of this spectrum band for essential mobile communications.
Similar considerations are involved in the 173.2-173.4-Mc band where there are now seven 25-kc channels allocated to the mobile service and where, with reasonable geographical separation, it might be entirely feasible to operate land mobile systems with 12.5-kc separation. The action of the majority, therefore, eliminates two potentially usable land mobile channels, although I understand that Government operations in the adjacent bands might prevent such mobile use.
Paragraphs 3 and 12 of the Commission's order leave the impression that the spectrum space that is going to be occupied by the services on these "splinters" is not feasible for regular land mobile use. Of course, it would be very difficult to attempt to use single 7.5-kc channels for ordinary two-way land mobile service. But the potential is not limited to use of three individual 7.5-kc slots -- it is more accurately a potential land mobile channel which has its assigned frequency 22.5 kc away from the present adjacent channels on each side. I think the majority stultifies its thinking when it talks of "these narrow channels" and refers to the lack of suggestions as to ways of using the proposed 7.5-kc channels for two-way mobile service. This misses the vital point that in the 154-Mc band we do not have to use 7.5-kc channels, but have the option of consolidating these so-called "splinters" into an admittedly usable 22.5-kc channel.
In several of the services 15-kc tertiaries are not only allocated but are being used regularly. In this regard I think it is significant to point out the recent action of the Commission authorizing the fire department of Jersey City to operate on a channel just 15 kc removed from channels used by the New York and Newark Fire Departments. We pointed out in letters to the latter two agencies that such use appeared compatible with their existing operations. If such a mode of operation is feasible in the critical safety services, surely it is possible to use these valuable frequencies for the mobile purposes for which they are now assigned.
I think this action is a step backward, and I am afraid it may be the prelude to further invasion of the mobile bands for fixed purposes.