[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 110 (Thursday, June 10, 2021)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 30860-30887]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-11063]


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FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION

47 CFR Parts 2, 87, and 90

[ET Docket No. 13-115; RM 11341; FCC 21-44; FR ID 27947]


Allocation of Spectrum for Non-Federal Space Launch Operations

AGENCY: Federal Communications Commission.

ACTION: Proposed rule.

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SUMMARY: In this document, the Federal Communications Commission 
(Commission) takes steps towards establishing a spectrum allocation and 
licensing framework that will provide regulatory certainty and improved 
efficiency and that will promote innovation and investment in the 
United States commercial space launch industry. In the Further Notice 
of Proposed Rulemaking, the Commission seeks comment on the definition 
of space launch operations, the potential allocation of spectrum for 
the commercial space launch industry, including the 420-430 MHz, 2025-
2110 MHz, and 5650-5925 MHz bands. In addition, the Commission seeks 
comment on establishing service rules, including licensing and 
technical rules and coordination procedures, for the use of spectrum 
for commercial space launch operations. Finally, the Commission seeks 
to refresh the record on potential ways to facilitate Federal use of 
commercial satellite services in what are currently non-Federal 
satellite bands and enable more robust federal use of the 399.9-400.05 
MHz band.

DATES: Comments are due on or before July 12, 2021; reply comments are 
due on or before August 9, 2021.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by ET Docket No. 13-115, 
by any of the following methods:
     Federal Communications Commission's Website: http://apps.fcc.gov/ecfs/. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
     People with Disabilities: Contact the FCC to request 
reasonable accommodations (accessible format documents, sign language 
interpreters, CART, etc.) by email: [email protected] or phone: 202-418-
0530 or TTY: 202-418-0432.
    For detailed instructions for submitting comments and additional 
information on the rulemaking process, see the SUPPLEMENTARY 
INFORMATION section of this document.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Nicholas Oros, Office of Engineering 
and Technology, at (202) 418-0636 or [email protected]; Peter 
Trachtenberg, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, at 
[email protected] or 202-418-7369; or Kimberly Baum, 
International Bureau, at [email protected] or 202-418-2752. For 
information regarding the PRA information collection requirements 
contained in this PRA, contact Cathy Williams, Office of Managing 
Director, at (202) 418-2918 or [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This is a summary of the Commission's Report 
and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FNPRM), ET Docket 
No. 13-115, FCC 21-44, adopted and released on April 22, 2020. This 
document is available by downloading the text from the Commission's 
website at https://www.fcc.gov/document/fcc-seeks-make-spectrum-available-commercial-space-launches-0. When the FCC Headquarters 
reopens to the public, the full text of this document also will be 
available for public inspection and copying during regular business 
hours in the FCC Reference Center, 45 L Street NE, Washington, DC 
20554. Alternative formats are available for people with disabilities 
(braille, large print, electronic files, audio format) by sending an 
email to [email protected] or calling the Commission's Consumer and 
Governmental Affairs Bureau at (202) 418-0530 (voice), (202) 418-0432 
(TTY).

[[Page 30861]]

Synopsis

    1. In this FNPRM, the Commission continue its efforts to support 
commercial space launch operations and federal use of commercial space 
services. Specifically, the Commission proposes to add a non-Federal 
allocation in the 2025-2110 MHz band to support such operations, and 
the Commission seeks further comment on adding non-Federal allocations 
for commercial space launch operations in the 420-430 MHz, 2200-2290 
MHz, and 5650-5925 MHz bands. The Commission further proposes to adopt 
a licensing framework and a set of technical rules to govern space 
launch operations services in the 2200-2290 MHz band, as well as the 
other three bands if they are ultimately allocated for commercial space 
launch purposes. In addition, the Commission seeks comment on whether 
to amend any of the rules applicable to space launch operations in the 
2360-2395 MHz bands. The Commission seeks comment on various licensing 
frameworks to authorize a variety of telemetry, tracking, and command 
operations between launch vehicles and ground stations during the 
initial launch and reentry phases of space launch operations. The 
Commission also seeks comment on whether there are additional measures 
that should be considered in order to facilitate radio-frequency 
licensing of certain other types of space launch operations that may be 
currently addressed through experimental licensing, including 
communications between launch vehicles and satellites and 
communications in connection with certain payload activities. Finally, 
the Commission seeks to refresh the record on the matter of expanding 
Federal use of certain non-Federal FSS and MSS bands, including 
removing the footnote restriction on federal earth stations accessing 
federal space stations operating in the 399.9-400.05 MHz band.
    2. In a 2013 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Notice of Inquiry 
(NPRM), the Commission proposed to provide a primary allocation of 
spectrum in three bands for non-Federal use during space launches: 420-
430 MHz, 2200-2290 MHz, and 5650-5925 MHz. The NPRM also proposed to 
add either a Federal Fixed Satellite Service (FSS) or Mobile Satellite 
Service (MSS) allocation or a footnote to allow Federal access to 
several frequency bands for satellite services that currently only 
support commercial satellite systems. The NPRM also addressed a 2012 
NTIA request to change a footnote in the U.S. Table to enable Federal 
space stations to operate in the 399.9-400.05 MHz MSS band.
    3. 420-430 MHz Band. The 420-430 MHz band is used during launches 
from Federal launch sites to transmit a flight termination signal to a 
launch vehicle, if necessary. This signal will cause the launch vehicle 
to self-destruct if it goes off course and poses a danger to a 
populated area. The NPRM sought comment on whether the Commission 
should make a co-primary non-Federal Aeronautical Mobile allocation for 
the 420-430 MHz band and whether it should add a footnote to the U.S. 
Table restricting use of the allocation to self-destruct signals (i.e., 
flight termination signals) during launches. The Commission has not 
received any STA requests for this band during space launches. This 
band is heavily used by Federal users, including the Department of 
Defense (DoD), for radiolocation applications.
    4. The Commercial Spaceflight Federation notes that there has not 
been a need for this band by commercial companies because launches have 
occurred at government facilities which transmit the flight termination 
signals. However, the Commercial Spaceflight Federation claims that, as 
launches increasingly occur at private spaceports, operators will need 
licenses for this band. The New Mexico Spaceport Authority agrees that 
commercial operators will want to operate their own flight safety 
systems. SpaceX may need access to the band in the future. Orbital ATK 
endorses adding a co-primary non-Federal allocation for 421 MHz rather 
than adding the allocation for the entire band. Blue Origin takes no 
position on use of this band and indicates that it does not use this 
band during launches.
    5. The Commission seeks further comment on whether to adopt a 
footnote to the U.S. Table which adds a primary non-Federal 
Aeronautical Mobile allocation to the 420-430 MHz band, requires 
coordination of assignments with NTIA, and restricts use of the band to 
pre-launch testing of launch vehicles and sending flight termination 
signals to launch vehicles during launches. Because launches to date 
have occurred at Federal ranges, access to this band by commercial 
launch providers has not been necessary. The Commission expects this 
may change as companies transition towards using commercial launch 
sites in the future. Thus, adding this Aeronautical Mobile allocation 
may be critical for protecting the public during space launches. 
Because the intended use of this band is for safety-of-life 
applications, the Commission proposes to add the Aeronautical Mobile 
allocation on a primary basis so that its use will be on an 
interference-protected basis. Further, the Commission proposes to add 
this Aeronautical Mobile allocation for the entire 420-430 MHz band, 
rather than limit it to just 421 MHz as suggested by Orbital ATK, 
because the Commission cannot predict what frequencies will be 
available at the future at launch sites. As NTIA permits range safety 
operations (i.e., flight termination systems) across 420-450 MHz, 
should the Commission expand the Aeronautical Mobile allocation to 420-
450 MHz? Regardless of the frequency range of the allocation, use of 
the band would need to be coordinated with NTIA. In this FNPRM, the 
Commission also proposes licensing and service rules for use of this 
band, should the Commission adopt this proposed allocation.
    6. While the U.S. Table does not have a Mobile allocation in the 
420-430 MHz band, the International Table has a Mobile, except 
aeronautical mobile allocation, for all regions. Therefore, 
aeronautical mobile use of the 420-430 MHz band is contrary to the 
International Table. Consequently, other countries may permit radio 
services in the band that are not compatible with aeronautical mobile 
use of this band. If the Commission adopts an Aeronautical Mobile 
allocation for this band, does it need to place restrictions on use of 
the allocation to prevent harmful interference occurring to radio 
services in other countries? Such restrictions could include 
prohibition of operations near international borders, power 
limitations, or use of directional antennas to direct transmission away 
from international borders.
    7. 2025-2110 MHz Band. The NPRM addressed three frequency bands 
commonly used by commercial space launch entities at that time. 
However, since the NPRM was adopted in 2013, the commercial space 
launch industry has also begun to use the 2025-2110 MHz band to 
transmit control signals to launch vehicles. The Commission has granted 
access to this band during space launches using STAs issued under its 
Part 5 experimental licensing rules. The Commission expects that use of 
this band by the commercial space launch industry will continue to grow 
in the future and that establishing a permanent allocation for these 
services will provide more reliable access to this band than the STA 
process. The Commission therefore proposes to amend the Allocation 
Table by adding a co-primary non-Federal space operation (Earth-to-
space) allocation to the 2025-2110 MHz band.

[[Page 30862]]

    8. The 2025-2110 MHz band is currently allocated for both Federal 
and non-Federal fixed and mobile use. The largest non-Federal use of 
the band is for the Broadcast Auxiliary Service (BAS) operating under 
Part 74 of the Commission's rules. BAS stations make it possible for 
television and radio stations to transmit program material from the 
site of a breaking news story or a major event to the studio for 
inclusion in a broadcast program. BAS stations are also used to 
transmit programming material from a studio to the broadcasting 
transmitter or between television broadcast stations. BAS shares the 
2025-2110 MHz band with the Cable Television Relay Service (CARS) and 
the Local Television Transmission Service (LTTS), which ``have 
technically and operationally similar stations[.]'' The Commission's 
rules encourage BAS, CARS, and LTTS users of this band to consult with 
local coordination committees in selecting their frequencies to avoid 
causing harmful interference with each other's operations.
    9. Since 2000, the 2025-2110 MHz band has been allocated for 
Federal space operation, space research, and earth exploration 
satellite services. While these Federal allocations are co-primary, 
these uses in general are not allowed to constrain BAS, CARS, and LTTS 
deployment and must be coordinated with these non-Federal operations. 
Federal use of these allocations continues to increase as Federal users 
seek to increase resiliency and deploy large constellations of smaller 
satellites. To date, sharing of this band between Federal operations 
and BAS, CARS, and LTTS users has been successful.
    10. Federal primary fixed and mobile service allocations were added 
to the 2025-2110 MHz band in 2014. Footnote US92 restricts Federal use 
of the band to the military services and places specific requirements 
upon federal systems to facilitate sharing of the band with incumbent 
Federal and non-Federal services. The military services' transition 
plans include the relocation of certain terrestrial systems from the 
1755-1780 MHz band into the 2025-2110 MHz band. The process of 
relocating Federal systems into the band is currently on-going.
    11. Multiple commercial space launch operators either have used or 
have indicated that they plan to use the 2025-2110 MHz band to support 
their launch operations. SpaceX has used this band to send command 
signals to the first stage of its Falcon 9 launch vehicle as it lands 
either on a recovery drone ship or on land. Blue Origin has used this 
band to transmit command signals to its suborbital New Shepard launch 
vehicle and plans to use it in the future for orbital launches of its 
New Glenn launch vehicle. Rocket Lab has used this band to conduct 
ground testing for its Electron Launch Vehicle and plans to use it in 
the future to command the third stage of its launch vehicles. These 
operations have been conducted using STAs issued by the Commission 
under its Part 5 experimental rules. The Commission expects that use of 
this band by the commercial space launch industry will continue to grow 
in the future. The Commission seeks comment on the projected future use 
of this band for space launch activities.
    12. To support the commercial space launch industry, the Commission 
proposes to amend the Allocation Table by adding a co-primary non-
Federal Space Operation (Earth-to-space) (space-to-space) allocation to 
the 2025-2110 MHz band. Given the heavy use of this band by BAS, CARS, 
and LTTS, and the increasing Federal use of the band, including for 
Federal space systems, these service rules will need to provide for 
coordination with these operations. As the Commission expects the 
number of launches to continue to increase in the future, the 
Commission believes that adopting this approach will be more feasible 
than relying on the current STA process. The Commission seeks comment 
on this allocation proposal.
    13. The Commission proposes to allow use of the entire 2025-2110 
MHz band without any restriction on where licensed launches may occur. 
The Commission notes that for the Space Operation allocation for the 
2200-2290 MHz band, the Commission considered whether the use of that 
spectrum should be restricted to launches at Federal ranges. In 
addition, the Space Operation allocation the Commission is adopting for 
the 2200-2290 MHz band for space launches restricts non-Federal space 
operations to specific portions of the band. Both of these restrictions 
were requested by NTIA to facilitate coordination with the existing 
Federal users of this bands. The Commission seeks comment on whether 
limiting launches to certain frequencies or locations is needed to 
facilitate coordination between non-Federal and Federal users. Should 
use of this band for space launches be limited to only portions of the 
band? Considering the restrictions placed on Federal uses of the band, 
should these same restrictions be placed on new non-Federal uses of the 
band? Are other restrictions also required to protect the incumbent and 
incoming Federal uses of the band? Is there any reason to restrict use 
of the band to launches conducted at specific locations such as at 
Federal ranges or FAA licensed launch sites given that the Commission 
are not placing any such restrictions on use of the Space Operation 
allocation the Commission are adopting for the 2200-2290 MHz band? 
Considering the Federal and non-Federal uses of the band, would it 
serve the public interest to adopt any of these restrictions? The 
Commission notes that many recent launches using this band have been 
conducted from either Federal ranges or FAA licensed launch sites. For 
example, SpaceX has launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida and Rocket 
Lab has conducted launch testing at Wallops Island, Virginia. However, 
Blue Origin has launched from Van Horn, Texas, which is neither an FAA 
licensed launch site or at a Federal range. Should use of the Space 
Operation allocation be limited to space launches or are there other 
kinds of space operation uses that may be appropriate for this band? 
Are there any other restrictions that are needed to facilitate sharing 
of the band between the non-Federal space operation service and the 
other users of the band, in particular BAS, CARS, and LTTS?
    14. 2200-2290 MHz Band. In addition to a Space Operation 
allocation, both the International Table and the Federal Table include 
a Mobile Service allocation allowing aeronautical mobile use. Would it 
serve the public interest to modify the non-Federal allocations for the 
2200-2290 MHz band to include a Mobile Service allocation in this band 
to facilitate licensing of commercial space launch operations in the 
commercial space launch operations context? The Commission notes that 
three frequencies in the 2360-2395 MHz band are available for both 
Federal and non-Federal use for telemetry and telecommand of launch and 
reentry vehicles under a Mobile allocation and its Part 87 rules. This 
use is identical to the launch vehicle telemetry for which space launch 
providers have obtained STAs for the 2200-2290 MHz band. To harmonize 
the allocation status and the applicable service rules of the 2200-2290 
MHz and 2360-2395 MHz bands, it may be appropriate to adopt a Mobile 
allocation for the 2200-2290 MHz band in addition to the Space 
Operation allocation the Commission has adopted. Therefore, the 
Commission seeks comment on whether the Commission should add a non-
Federal secondary Mobile allocation to the 2200-2290 MHz band. What are 
the benefits and costs of subjecting commercial space launch operations 
to both terrestrial mobile service and space operations

[[Page 30863]]

regulatory frameworks? Does the Commission need to define the boundary 
between, when and how mobile service rules or space operations rules 
apply to space launch operations, if both allocations together cover 
the operations? If so, would it serve the public interest to make this 
boundary depend on the stage of the launch vehicle--earlier or later 
stages? How should the Commission define such stage boundaries? If the 
Commission were to divide space launch operations into stages, how 
should the Commission define space launch vehicles and should such a 
definition include any spacecrafts carrying payloads to their orbital 
locations? What are the domestic and international legal and policy 
ramifications of adopting such a clear dual allocation and service 
rules approach where the communications emanating from the same 
equipment would be considered under both terrestrial and space services 
allocations, and be regulated under one or the other, depending on the 
launch vehicle's position in its trajectory and distance from the 
earth? Alternatively, should the Commission regulate a space launch 
vehicle's operations throughout its trajectory under a single rule 
part? Commenters should discuss how the Commission can provide the most 
flexibility with the least regulatory burden while serving the public 
interest.
    15. If the Commission adopts a non-Federal secondary Mobile 
allocation, the Commission proposes to implement this allocation by 
modifying the footnote to the U.S. Table that the Commission has 
adopted to implement the Space Operation allocation in the 2200-2290 
MHz band. Similar to the non-Federal space operations allocation, this 
mobile allocation footnote would restrict use of the band to pre-launch 
testing and space launch operations and require coordination of use of 
the band with NTIA prior to each launch. Are all of these restrictions 
appropriate for the Mobile allocation in this band? The Federal Mobile 
allocation for the 2200-2290 MHz band is currently restricted to line-
of-sight use only, including aeronautical telemetry; excludes flight 
testing of manned aircraft; and prohibits the introduction of high-
density mobile systems. Would it be appropriate to adopt any of these 
limitations on use of the non-Federal Mobile allocation? Are any other 
limitations on use of the non-Federal Mobile allocation necessary?
    16. The Space Operation Service is defined in the Commission's 
rules as being ``concerned exclusively with the operation of 
spacecraft, in particular space tracking, space telemetry, and space 
telecommand.'' As the non-Federal Space Operation allocation the 
Commission has adopted in the Report and Order is limited to use for 
pre-launch testing and during space launch operations the use of this 
allocation is limited compared to what would normally be permitted 
under a Space Operation allocation. The Commission seeks comment on 
whether a greater range of non-Federal space operations should be 
permitted under the Space Operation allocation in this band--i.e., 
should the restrictions the Commission has placed on use of this 
allocation be modified, reduced, or eliminated? Expanding the scope of 
this allocation could be especially useful for permitting communication 
between spacecraft during orbital and suborbital missions. For example, 
SpaceX has used the 2200-2290 MHz band for communication between its 
Dragon spacecraft and the International Space Station. As the 
commercial space industry continues to develop, the need for 
communication with and tracking of spacecraft is likely to increase. Is 
there a need for a non-Federal space operation (space-to-space) 
allocation in this frequency band, similar to the Federal allocation? 
In considering modifying any restrictions on non-Federal use of this 
band, the Commission must keep in mind the need to protect Federal 
operations in this band. How could permitting greater non-Federal space 
operations activities in the band be done while preventing harmful 
interference to Federal operations?
    17. The non-Federal Space Operation allocation the Commission has 
adopted for the 2200-2290 MHz band is limited by US96 to four subbands: 
2208.5-2213.5 MHz, 2212.5-2217.5 MHz, 2270-2275 MHz, and 2285-2290 MHz. 
Recent space launches that have accessed this band for telemetry using 
STAs have used different portions of the band than these four subbands. 
The fact that the channels used for these launches were successfully 
coordinated with NTIA indicates that it may be possible to provide 
additional flexibility to space launch operators rather than limiting 
access to only these four subbands. To provide this flexibility, the 
Commission proposes to remove the restriction in US96 limiting use of 
the band for non-Federal space operations to the four subbands. 
Instead, under this proposal use of the Space Operation allocation 
during pre-launch testing and space launch operations could potentially 
occur in any portion of the 2200-2290 MHz band. Because of the heavy 
use that Federal agencies make of this band, use of this band for 
launches will need to be coordinated with NTIA. As Federal use of this 
band is likely to evolve over time, this coordination with NTIA will be 
necessary on a launch-by-launch basis.
    18. While the Commission is proposing to remove the limitation on 
use of the Space Operation allocation to four subbands, it may still be 
appropriate to place some limitations on the spectrum that may be used 
during launches because the band will be shared with Federal users. The 
subbands currently in US96 are each 5 megahertz wide with a total of 20 
megahertz of spectrum potentially available for use for each launch. 
Should non-Federal use of this allocation be limited to channels with a 
necessary bandwidth of 5 megahertz as is currently required by US96? 
Should there be a limit on the total amount of spectrum available for 
use during a launch? If the Commission places limitations on the 
bandwidth in each channel or total bandwidth per launch, should there 
also be a means for these limits to be waived if there is sufficient 
justification? If the Commission leaves in place the restriction on 
non-Federal use of the 2200-2290 MHz band to a limited set of subbands, 
should the subbands be adjusted to reflect the fact that recent 
launches have used channels outside of these subbands?
    19. While the NPRM proposed that the Commission adopt a primary 
Space Operation allocation for the 2200-2290 MHz band, the Commission 
has instead adopted a secondary allocation. Several commenters advocate 
adoption of a primary allocation claiming that it will lead to 
streamlined licensing, eliminate repeated licensing work, require less 
coordination, and provide greater certainty with respect to approvals. 
Although the secondary allocation the Commission adopts is clearly 
preferable to the current STA process, adopting a primary allocation 
may nevertheless be the most appropriate long-term band management 
policy. Adopting a primary allocation would place commercial launch 
operators on an equal footing with other users of the band and provide 
greater certainty to incentivize investment as the commercial space 
industry continues to expand with more frequent launches, privately 
developed launch facilities, and manned space flights. Therefore, the 
Commission seeks comment on whether it should adopt a primary Space 
Operation allocation for the 2200-2290 MHz band. The Commission notes 
that even if it adopts a primary non-Federal allocation for this band, 
individual launches would still have to be coordinated with NTIA

[[Page 30864]]

because of the heavy existing Federal use of the band.
    20. 5650-5925 MHz Band. The 5650-5925 MHz band is used for radar 
tracking of launch vehicles during launches. This often involves 
placing a radar transponder on the launch vehicle, which responds to a 
ground-based radar signal that transmits tracking information back to 
the tracking station. Because launches in the past have occurred at 
Federal ranges, the radar tracking stations used during the launches 
have been Federal facilities. However, commercial launch providers have 
obtained experimental STAs for transponders on the launch vehicles that 
operate in the band.
    21. The NPRM made two alternate proposals for providing commercial 
entities access to this spectrum for radar tracking during launches. 
Under the first proposal, the NPRM proposed to add a footnote to the 
U.S. Table providing a primary non-Federal radiolocation service 
allocation. The footnote would restrict use of the allocation to 
launches and pre-launch testing and would require coordination with 
NTIA. In a second proposal, the NPRM proposed to add a primary non-
Federal radiolocation service allocation to the 5650-5925 MHz band with 
a footnote containing the same restrictions. The NPRM asked a number of 
questions concerning use of the band, such as the operational 
requirements for radar tracking during space launches, whether other 
radiolocation bands could be used, and if there are compatibility 
issues with Intelligent Transportation Systems that are primary in a 
portion of the band.
    22. In response to the 2013 NPRM, the Commercial Spaceflight 
Federation recommended adding a non-Federal allocation to the 5650-5925 
MHz band, noting that the band is used by Federal radar facilities to 
track launches from government-owned facilities. The New Mexico 
Spaceport Authority applauded the Commission in recognizing the 
potential to mix Federal and commercial equipment within one system or 
service and requests that the Commission design future regulations to 
promote interoperability between Federal and commercial systems. The 
Aerospace Industries Association argued that no allocation is needed 
for the band, given that the band is used for radar tracking from the 
Federal launch range, which is managed by the range. Orbital ATK 
endorsed adding a non-Federal allocation to the band at 5765 MHz. No 
commenters who have discussed the needs of the commercial space 
industry with Commission staff in the past year have indicated an 
interest in using this band during space launches. In recent years, 
only one licensee has obtained licenses for use of the 5650-5925 MHz 
band.
    23. The Commission seeks further comment on whether to adopt a non-
Federal Radiolocation allocation for the 5650-5925 MHz band by adding a 
footnote to the U.S. Table. Should such an allocation be limited to use 
for pre-launch testing and tracking of launch vehicles? Radar 
transponders transmitting from commercial launch vehicles require 
licenses from the Commission, even if the vehicle is launched from a 
Federal or commercial launch site and tracked by a Federal ground-based 
radar tracking facility. As there currently is no non-Federal 
Radiolocation allocation for this band, the Commission issues 
experimental STAs to authorize operations in the 5650-5925 MHz band to 
support commercial launches. This case-by-case procedure may become 
more burdensome as the commercial launch industry grows. However, given 
the apparent low interest in this band for radar tracking during 
launches, there may be no need to adopt this allocation. Hence, the 
Commission seeks comment on the number of launches likely to need 
access to this band in the future. Given that recent STAs issued for 
use of this band have used only the 5758-5772 MHz portion of the band, 
should the allocation be limited only to a portion of the band? Should 
the allocation be primary or secondary? Should use of the band be 
limited to specific locations such or Federal ranges or FAA-licensed 
launch sites?
    24. In addition to having an allocation for Federal radiolocation, 
the 5650-5925 MHz band is shared with other services. The 5850-5925 MHz 
band has a primary non-Federal Mobile allocation with use of this 
allocation in the 5895-5925 MHz band limited to the Intelligent 
Transportation System radio service. Because launch facilities are 
generally not located near public roads and the signal emanates from 
high in the sky, ensuring a weak signal at ground level, the Commission 
expects negligible, if any, impact on Intelligent Transportation 
Systems in the upper portion of the band. Is this expectation 
reasonable? If use of this band for space launches would impact 
Intelligent Transportation Systems in the upper portion of the band, 
are there specific accommodations the Commission could take to minimize 
that impact? The 5650-5895 MHz band is currently used by Unlicensed 
National Information Infrastructure (U-NII) devices operating under the 
Commission's Part 15 rules. U-NII devices operating in the 5650-5725 
MHz portion of the band employ dynamic frequency selection (DFS) to 
detect the presence of radar signals to avoid causing interference. 
Will DFS successfully enable coexistence between U-NII devices and 
space launch radars in this portion of the band? In the 5725-5850 MHz 
band, U-NII devices operate without the use of DFS. Are there steps the 
Commission could take to minimize interference between space launch 
radar operations and U-NII and ITS operations in the upper portion of 
the band? If interference between these operations is likely, should 
the Commission limit this new radar allocation to the frequencies below 
5725 MHz? The 5850-5925 MHz band is also allocated to the fixed-
satellite service in the uplink direction with use limited to 
international, inter-continental systems. Given the limited number of 
earth stations and limited number of launch sites, the Commission 
expect that sharing would be feasible though coordination. The 
Commission seeks comment on this view.
    25. Licensing and Technical Rules for Space Launch Operations. In 
this section, the Commission proposes to adopt rules for new non-
Federal space launch operations. As an initial matter, the Commission 
seeks comment on how to define non-Federal ``space launch operations.'' 
The STAs that the Commission has granted in the 2200-2290 MHz band, for 
example, have included telemetry from the launch vehicle and the 
payload, during the initial space launch, the orbital phase (including 
docking with the ISS), and return and reentry of the space launch 
vehicle. If the Commission were to cover communications needs during 
these operations, do these operations include all activities that may 
be needed for a successful commercial space launch operation? Would it 
serve the public interest to include all of these operations in the 
definition of ``space launch operations''? Is there a need to limit or 
further expand the definition to include other space operations? The 
Commission also seeks comment on whether and how to define ``space 
launch vehicle'' and whether there should be any distinction between a 
``launch vehicle'' or a ``reentry vehicle'' for space launch operations 
purposes. The Commission seeks to establish rules that flexibly, 
efficiently, and effectively support the evolving spectrum requirements 
of commercial space launch operations while continuing to adequately 
protect vital Federal operations in the bands. In that regard, the 
Commission seeks comment on the appropriate licensing and technical

[[Page 30865]]

rules to meet these goals. First, the Commission seeks comment on the 
appropriate licensing framework for the non-Federal space launch 
operations in the 2200-2290 MHz band, the proposed non-Federal space 
launch operations in the 420-430 MHz and 2025-2110 MHz bands, and the 
potential non-Federal launch tracking operations in the 5650-5925 MHz 
band. The Commission also seeks comment on which Commission rule parts 
should apply to different elements of space launch operations, and on 
how to integrate these various provisions to facilitate operations of 
space launch services, including potentially by creating a new stand-
alone rule part. The Commission proposes and seeks comment on specific 
licensing rules, such as rules governing scope of service, eligibility, 
license period, application processing rules, and coordination 
requirements, as well as technical rules that will foster 
interoperability of equipment used for non-Federal and Federal launches 
and rules regarding equipment authorization. Finally, the Commission 
seeks comment on whether the Commission should update any rules 
regarding space launch vehicle use of aeronautical telemetry in the 
2360-2395 MHz band.
    26. Applicability of Certain Sections of Part 87 (Aeronautical 
Mobile). Existing licensing and operating rules under Part 87 currently 
support commercial space launch operations in the 2360-2395 MHz band 
and offer an established regulatory approach. The telemetry and 
telecommand uses identified for the non-Federal space launch operations 
in the 2200-2290 MHz band and the proposed non-Federal operations in 
the 420-430 MHz and 2025-2110 MHz bands are similar to space launch 
telemetry uses permitted in the non-Federal 2360-2395 MHz band, which 
are supported under Part 87, Subpart J flight testing rules. The 
Commission seeks comment regarding which rules under Part 87 would be 
the most appropriate model for non-Federal operations in the 2200-2290 
MHz, 420-430 MHz, and 2025-2110 MHz bands, as well as associated 
telemetry and telecommand functions, and on the benefits and costs of 
applying such rules. In Appendix D, the Commission sets forth proposed 
Part 87 rules that could be applied to these operations in these bands, 
if the Part 87 model is adopted.
    27. The Commission notes that the initial launch and reentry phases 
of a space launch operation share some, but not all, of the 
characteristics of conventional aviation services, specifically flight 
test and aeronautical mobile telemetry uses, which are regulated under 
Part 87. Space launch operations may need additional flexibility for 
communications with ground stations in the United States, abroad, in 
space, and in some instances with other space stations, including 
satellites. The Commission also notes that certain Part 87 licensing 
and operational rules, while relevant to conventional aviation services 
generally, may not be appropriate for space launch operations. The 
Commission seeks comment on whether there are Part 87 general licensing 
and technical rules that may not be applicable for purposes of 
developing a regulatory framework for commercial space launch 
operations.
    28. Applicability of Part 90 (Private Land Mobile). With respect to 
launch vehicle radar tracking functions, the Commission seeks comment 
on administering the proposed 5650-5925 MHz band radiolocation 
allocation as part of the Radiolocation Service, which is currently 
regulated under Part 90. In what phases of space launch operations is 
this radar tracking function needed? Are there any space launch 
operations phases, including orbital phases, that may require the 
Commission to formulate additional radar tracking rules and, if so, 
what are those and why would they be needed? The radiolocation uses for 
the 5650-5925 MHz band differ from the aeronautical telemetry uses 
governed under the Part 87 rules. Because radiolocation operations are 
generally regulated under Part 90, the Commission proposes to apply the 
existing licensing framework to the 5650-5925 MHz radiolocation use. 
This would apply to ground stations as well as to associated 
transponders affixed to the space launch vehicle for tracking purposes. 
The Commission seeks comment on the benefits and costs of this proposal 
and on other possible licensing frameworks. Specifically, is Part 90 
the appropriate licensing mechanism for ground stations and 
transponders affixed to the launch vehicle or should ground stations 
and associated transponders be licensed under Part 87? In Appendix D, 
the Commission set forth proposed Part 90 rules that could be applied 
to these operations in this band, if the Part 90 model is adopted.
    29. Applicability of Part 25 (Satellite). The Part 25 rules provide 
for authorization of both space stations and earth stations. Under Part 
25, a ``space station'' is defined as a station located on an object 
which is beyond, is intended to go beyond, or has been beyond, the 
major portion of the Earth's atmosphere; ``space radiocommunications'' 
is defined as any radiocommunication involving the use of one or more 
space stations. In addition, Part 25 includes a definition for 
``spacecraft'' as a man-made vehicle which is intended to go beyond the 
major portion of the Earth's atmosphere. Given that space launch 
vehicles are intended to go beyond the major portion of the Earth's 
atmosphere, safely deliver their payloads (typically satellites), and 
then reenter the atmosphere, the Commission seeks comment on the 
benefits and costs of applying the definition of space stations under 
Part 25 of its rules, to radio communications stations on space launch 
vehicles. Additionally, some communications between launch vehicles and 
ground stations/earth stations may be conducted consistent with the 
Commission's rules applicable to earth stations and a space operations 
allocation in the U.S. Table of Frequency Allocations. The Commission 
notes that the Part 25 rules, including space station and earth station 
licensing processes, are designed to license spectrum use by commercial 
space services. The Commission seeks comment on which Part 25 rules 
could be applied, or used as a model for, the licensing of a space 
launch vehicle's communications through its full trajectory, and on the 
benefits and costs of this approach.
    30. Integrating the Authorization of Space Launch Operations across 
Rule Parts. The Commission recognizes that while a space launch 
operation may involve distinct telemetry, tracking, and command 
operations uses, it may be more practical to address all functions 
under a stand-alone rule part. Another option would be to create one or 
more subparts specifically to support commercial space launch 
telemetry, tracking, telecommand, and other communications needs of 
space launch operations. These subparts could establish the conditions 
under which frequencies would be licensed for use during a space 
launch. The Commission seeks comment on these approaches or on any 
alternate approaches. How can the Commission facilitates reliable 
access to spectrum while meeting the changing communications needs of 
space launch operations during any point of a space launch vehicle's 
trajectory? The Commission seeks comment on the best way to authorize 
the use of the relevant spectrum bands to cover space launch 
operations, starting at the launch site through the launch vehicle's 
trajectory and until its final destination, including reentry, in a 
flexible, efficient, and effective manner.

[[Page 30866]]

Commenters should discuss the costs and benefits of any licensing 
approach that they propose.
    31. Licensing Rules for Space Launch Operations. In the Report and 
Order, the Commission adopts a secondary allocation for the 2200-2290 
MHz band to support the current level of commercial launches and enable 
the continued growth of the commercial space launch industry. 
Consistent with the Report and Order, the Commission proposes certain 
service rules for the 2200-2290 MHz band and for the additional bands 
discussed herein.
    32. As noted, the non-Federal space operations allocation the 
Commission has adopted for the 2200-2290 MHz band includes a 
restriction and limits pre-launch testing and space launch operations 
to the 2208.5-2213.5 MHz, 2212.5-2217.5 MHz, 2270-2275 MHz, and 2285-
2290 MHz subbands. Consistent with the current allocation, the 
Commission seeks comment on restricting the use of the 2200-2290 MHz 
band for pre-launch testing and space launch operations to these four 
subbands in its service rules. Contingent on the adoption of this 
proposal, the Commission proposes to permit licensees to use additional 
frequencies outside the four subbands upon adequate justification for 
why such additional frequencies are necessary and in the public 
interest, on a case-by-case basis. Any requirement for frequencies for 
use during launches will have to be balanced with the use of the band 
by Federal systems and coordinated with NTIA. As noted in the Report 
and Order, any use will be limited to the telemetry and tracking 
operations of launch vehicles during pre-launch testing and during 
space launch operations. In the FNPRM above, however, the Commission 
also seeks comment on whether to remove the allocation restriction 
limiting use of the 2200-2290 MHz band for non-Federal space operations 
to the four subbands, such that use of the Space Operation allocation 
during pre-launch testing and space launch operations could potentially 
occur in any portion of the 2200-2290 MHz band. Thus, the Commission 
also seeks comment on whether, to provide greater flexibility in 
spectrum use, the Commission should remove any presumptive limitation 
to the four subbands in the service rules as well given that the use of 
any spectrum in the 2200-2290 MHz band would be separately coordinated 
for each launch.
    33. The Commission also proposes to add a provision restricting use 
of the proposed 420-430 MHz allocation to the transmission of flight 
termination signals during pre-launch testing and launches. This 
transmission would provide for a flight termination signal if a space 
launch vehicle goes astray. Because a launch vehicle which has gone 
off-course can endanger lives, the flight termination signal link must 
be extremely reliable. Therefore, it may not be possible to permit 
additional uses--particularly those that are not safety-of-life 
services--in the band.
    34. Further, the Commission proposes to restrict the commercial 
launch use of the 2025-2110 MHz band to telecommand uplink 
transmissions from the ground controller stations to the space launch 
vehicle in the event that the Commission adds a non-Federal Space 
Operation allocation to this band. This allocation would enable space 
launch providers to transmit to their space launch vehicles during the 
launch and recovery phase of operations. The largest use of the 2025-
2110 MHz band is for the BAS. This band is heavily used by BAS, CARS, 
and LTTS operations, as well as by Federal entities for space 
operations, space research, and the earth exploration satellite 
service. Considering these existing operations, as well as operations 
by non-Federal launches on a special temporary authority basis to date, 
is it feasible to accommodate uses in addition to the space launch 
telecommand uses described above?
    35. The Commission further proposes to add a restriction to limit 
use of the 5650-5925 MHz band to launch vehicle tracking. Although 
frequencies in the 5650-5925 MHz band are available to support certain 
non-Federal uses, the predominant use in the band is radiolocation, 
with Federal entities using the band for a wide variety of radar 
applications, including launch vehicle tracking. In order to promote 
interoperability with existing Federal radar tracking functions and to 
limit impact to other uses, the Commission proposes to restrict 
commercial space launch vehicle uses of this band to radar tracking.
    36. The Commission seeks comment on these proposals. In particular, 
the Commission seeks comment on whether these proposals provide 
sufficient flexibility for existing and future needs of non-Federal 
launch activities or whether additional uses should be accommodated if 
technically feasible. Additional uses in the bands beyond those 
specified above may not currently be possible due to technical 
characteristics and existing uses of the bands. However, the Commission 
seeks comment on whether to provide flexibility to enable other uses if 
it determines such uses are technically feasible and will not restrict 
or cause harmful interference to existing uses and incumbent 
operations. The Commission seeks comment on the costs and benefits of 
limiting the scope of uses in these bands. Commenters also should 
discuss what other measures the Commission should consider to promote a 
competitive marketplace for space launch operations and services.
    37. Eligibility. In the Report and Order, the Commission explains 
that opening this spectrum to the commercial space launch industry 
would encourage entrepreneurial efforts by providing commercial space 
entities certainty in their access to the spectrum that they need to 
promote the advance planning and investment necessary for future space 
launch activities. The Commission therefore proposes to limit 
eligibility to hold authorizations for the 2200-2290 MHz band as well 
as the proposed 420-430 MHz, 2025-2110 MHz, and 5650-5925 MHz bands to 
non-Federal entities that conduct space launch operations. The 
Commission seeks comment on the extent to which the supplemental 
eligibility criteria for flight test stations, set forth in Sec.  
87.301, would be an appropriate model for space launch license 
eligibility. To be eligible for a new commercial space launch license, 
the Commission proposes that the applicant must qualify as one of the 
following: (1) An operator or manufacturer of a commercial space launch 
or reentry vehicle or space launch or reentry vehicle components; (2) a 
parent corporation or its subsidiary if either corporation is an 
operator or manufacturer of a space launch or reentry vehicle or space 
launch or reentry vehicle components; or (3) an educational institution 
or a person primarily engaged in the design, development, modification, 
and flight test evaluation of a launch or reentry vehicle or launch or 
reentry vehicle components. The Commission also seeks comment on 
whether to allow other entities that provide space-based services, 
including satellite service providers, to be eligible for commercial 
space launch licenses. The Commission seeks comment on these 
eligibility restrictions, including whether to expand or further 
restrict the scope of eligible entities.
    38. Currently, each application for a flight test license under 
Part 87, Subpart J is required to include a certification to establish 
the applicant's eligibility for a license. Similarly, the Commission 
proposes to use this as a model to require an applicant for any 
commercial space launch frequencies to certify the eligibility criteria 
proposed above. The Commission tentatively concludes that requiring 
this certification would be in

[[Page 30867]]

the public interest and impose minimal burden on eligible entities. The 
Commission seeks comment on this proposal as well as on whether to 
impose any additional certification requirements. In some cases, the 
Commission has also required subsequent certifications by a licensee 
that stations comply with applicable technical requirements, such as in 
Sec.  25.133 of the Commission's rules. The Commission seeks comment on 
whether to require such a certification, through an appropriate check-
box, by either license applicants or licensees.
    39. Shared Frequency Use and Cooperative Use of Facilities. The 
Commission proposes to provide non-Federal space launch operators 
access to the 2200-2290 MHz band as well as the proposed 420-430 MHz, 
2025-2110 MHz, and 5650-5925 MHz bands on a shared, non-exclusive 
basis. The Commission traditionally has issued Part 87 licenses on a 
shared basis and not for the exclusive use of any licensee. Certain 
Part 90 radiolocation uses are also authorized on a similar shared 
basis. Similarly, the Commission's Part 25 satellite licensing rules 
also include provisions relating to shared and cooperative use of 
spectrum. Given that there is the potential for many different launch 
vehicle operators to use a given launch area, authorizing commercial 
space operations on a shared basis appears to be a reasonable approach 
for providing spectrum access for multiple space launch entities. It 
should be noted that, in this context, shared use status, while non-
exclusive, does not mean that a licensee will be required to accept 
interference. The licensee will be entitled to interference protection 
for its launch operations. The Commission seeks comment on this 
proposal and request comments on other viable options.
    40. Further, in the context of flight test operations, Part 87 
generally limits authorizations of flight test land stations to only 
one per airport, but it requires that these stations be made available 
without discrimination to anyone eligible for a flight test station 
license. This rule has enabled the shared use of facilities, which has 
reduced costs to licensees and promoted efficient use and competition 
in the aviation industry.
    41. The Commission seeks comment on whether a similar non-
discrimination policy for all space launch operations in the bands at 
issue is also necessary. The Commission is aware that there are launch 
sites that currently have ground transmitters for shared use, and it 
seeks comment on the practices involving ground stations at Federal 
ranges and FAA-licensed sites. Should the Commission adopt rules 
providing for non-discriminatory access of these facilities by non-
Federal space launch entities? The Commission seeks comment on whether 
non-discriminatory shared use of these facilities is necessary to 
support the existing and future needs of commercial space launch 
entities. The Commission seeks further comment on the costs and 
benefits of a cooperative use of facilities approach, as well as other 
facilities that may require non-discriminatory access and ways to 
streamline these practices.
    42. In licensing space launch operations, the Commission's goals 
are two-fold: (1) To encourage innovations and investments in the U.S. 
space commerce; and (2) to ensure a regulatory environment conducive to 
the establishment of a competitive U.S. commercial space launch sector 
while protecting Federal and other users in the bands. In this FNPRM, 
the Commission seeks comment on various licensing models with these 
goals in mind and aim to bring regulatory certainty in the marketplace 
while minimizing administrative burden and duplicative regulations.
    43. Site-Based Licensing. A number of Part 87 services, including 
flight test station licenses, and Part 90 radiolocation services are 
authorized on a site-by-site basis. A site-based licensing model is 
helpful in a shared use situation as fixed, well-defined areas of 
operation simplify coordination during the application process for 
services requiring frequency coordination, and facilitate intensive 
spectrum sharing. Moreover, this approach enables the Commission and 
interested stakeholders to identify quickly licensees in the band and 
their specific areas of operation in the event interference issues 
arise, which allows parties to resolve such issues in the shortest 
timeframe practicable. The Commission seeks comment on these 
conclusions and whether to issue space launch licenses on a site-by-
site basis. Would site-based licensing meet the needs of space launch 
operations? Does site-based licensing enable the safe and efficient 
operation of shared frequencies while providing the certainty and 
flexibility needed to support the existing and future needs of 
commercial space launch entities? Are space launch activities centered 
usually around certain sites? If the Commission were to adopt site-
based licensing, how should the it define a site?
    44. Other Licensing Options. The Commission also seeks comment on 
whether there are any other licensing models that may be suitable in 
the space launch operations context. For example, would it be 
appropriate to license specific space launch vehicles and list 
applicable ground stations (including those at the launch sites 
licensed by FAA) as authorized communications points with those 
vehicles? Another option would be to adopt a new approach combining 
various aspects of space-based services and aeronautical service 
licensing rules. If the Commission does so, what are the rules that 
would be most appropriate for licensing space launch services? Stations 
on space launch vehicles could be licensed similar to space stations 
and the communicating ground/earth stations could be licensed on a 
single or multiple site basis. A ground/earth station's operations also 
could be conditioned, for example, on filing of a certification before 
a planned space launch to certify that any required frequency 
coordination has been satisfactorily completed and the relevant ground/
earth stations are in compliance with all applicable legal and 
technical rules that the Commission might adopt for space launch 
operations. Or licensing of space launch operations could be similar to 
licensing models applicable to certain wireless services such as the 
3650-3700 MHz band, and the 71-76 GHz, 81-86 GHz, 92.0-94.0 GHz, and 
94.1-95.0 GHz bands. Pursuant to these approaches, space launch 
operators could have access to various spectrum bands on a non-
exclusive, yet protected, basis, but would be subject to measures 
designed to promote shared use of spectrum, such as a registration and 
frequency coordination requirement prior to each launch. With respect 
to the terrestrial nationwide, but non-exclusive, licensing approach, 
which typically has been used for shorter-distance terrestrial wireless 
services, could such a licensing approach be effective as applied to 
all phases of operations, including orbital phases? Could such a 
licensing process streamline the information that would be needed for 
initial licensing and then registration and coordination prior to a 
planned launch? The Commission seeks comment on the feasibility, costs, 
benefits, and potential challenges (if any) associated with each of 
these proposals.
    45. Comments should discuss any needed changes that should be made 
to reduce potential administrative burdens and streamline the site-
based licensing process as well as any other alternatives. The 
Commission also seeks comment on service area definitions as well as 
alternatives and the costs and benefits of proposed alternatives.

[[Page 30868]]

    46. Authorized Bandwidth. The Commission proposes to grant licenses 
for non-Federal operations in the 2200-2290 MHz band using a 5 
megahertz bandwidth, similar to NTIA's limit for transmissions by 
Federal space-to-Earth operations in the band. The Commission further 
seeks comment on permitting licensees to use larger bandwidths upon 
adequate justification for why such bandwidth are necessary and in the 
public interest, on a case-by-case basis. Any requirement for 
additional bandwidth for use during launches will have to be balanced 
with the use of the band by Federal systems and coordinated with NTIA. 
The Commission's review of experimental authorizations requested for 
the 2200-2290 MHz band indicates that the majority of applications 
involved requests for bandwidths of less than 5 megahertz. The 
Commission tentatively concludes that licensing the 2200-2290 MHz band 
in 5 megahertz channel blocks will likely accommodate most non-Federal 
launch vehicle operations in the band and provide licensees with 
greater flexibility than authorizations with a smaller bandwidth. This 
approach is consistent with NTIA's stated preference. The Commission 
seeks comment on this approach as well as other approaches. The 
Commission notes that 2360-2395 MHz band space launch telemetry and 
telecommand operations may be authorized in bandwidths of 1, 3, and 5 
megahertz. Should the Commission similarly authorize the 2200-2290 MHz 
band in a range of bandwidths?
    47. As discussed, the Commission is proposing to allocate the 
entire 420-430 MHz and 2025-2110 MHz bands for flight termination and 
telecommand uses, respectively, and is seeking comment regarding the 
portions of the 5650-5925 MHz band that should be allocated for launch 
vehicle tracking purposes. The Commission seeks comment on the 
appropriate bandwidth or spectrum blocks for the proposed 420-430 MHz, 
2025-2110 MHz, and 5650-5925 MHz allocations. The Commission notes that 
the bandwidths associated with experimental authorizations granted for 
frequencies in the 2025-2110 MHz and 5650-5925 MHz bands have varied in 
size. The Commission seeks comment on the typical and/or necessary 
bandwidths applicable to the space launch uses specified in this 
proceeding. Consistent with an NTIA recommendation, the Commission 
further seeks comment regarding the 420-430 MHz band, specifically on 
``the most appropriate frequencies . . . for each designated launch 
facility based on which frequencies can be supported for sending 
command destruct/flight termination signals.''
    48. License Term and Renewal. The Commission historically has 
established ten-year terms for wireless radio service licenses, 
including Part 87 aviation and Part 90 radiolocation licensees. In the 
satellite licensing context, most satellites are authorized for a 15-
year license term. The Commission tentatively concludes that ten-year 
terms will provide certainty and flexibility for space launch providers 
and therefore proposes to issue commercial space launch licenses for 
ten-year terms. The Commission recognizes, however, that the spectrum 
and use must be carefully managed and coordinated due to the heavy use 
of these bands, and the Commission notes that it has granted shorter 
license terms for Part 87 flight test stations pursuant to the 
frequency coordination process as a means to manage and ensure periodic 
reevaluation of possible interference issues. Several commenters have 
suggested a shorter five-year period as an appropriate license term. 
The Commission seeks comment on alternative license terms.
    49. The Wireless Radio Services (WRS) proceeding established the 
process for renewing a site-based license. Specifically, it provided 
that a site-based WRS licensee will meet our renewal standard if it can 
certify that it is continuing to operate consistent with its most 
recently filed construction notification (or most recent authorization, 
when no construction notification is required), and make the 
certifications regarding permanent discontinuance and substantial 
compliance with Commission rules and policies that are applicable to 
all renewal applicants seeking to avail themselves of one of the 
renewal safe harbors. Services subject to this site-based renewal 
standard include the Part 90 Radiolocation Service. The Commission 
proposes to extend this renewal standard to licensees in the 5650-5925 
MHz band to the extent the Commission applies the Part 90 Radiolocation 
Service rules to this band. The Commission request comment on this 
proposal.
    50. The WRS Order does not apply to Wireless Radio Services that 
are licensed by rule or on a ``personal'' basis or that have no 
construction/performance obligation. This includes most Part 87 
services. The Commission seeks comment on whether to require commercial 
space launch licensees make a ``renewal showing,'' for instance, 
certifying that it is operating consistent with its initial application 
for authorization or that it has complied with the required 
coordination. The Commission seeks comment on whether this renewal 
showing is warranted for the bands at issue given the heavy use by 
Federal agencies. The Commission believes that requiring a renewal 
showing in these bands would facilitate efficient spectrum use by 
ensuring that licensees use the spectrum productively, collaboratively, 
and in compliance with Commission rules during their initial license 
terms. The Commission seeks comment on the costs and benefits of 
imposing a renewal requirement for commercial space launch operations 
licensees.
    51. Application Process. The Commission seeks comment on the 
application process to be used to assign commercial space launch 
licenses. As an initial matter, the Commission seeks comment on whether 
assignment of space launch operations licenses is subject to Section 
309(j) of the Communications Act. The Commission notes that, while 
Section 309(j) of the Communications Act requires that it assign 
spectrum licenses through the use of competitive bidding for mutually 
exclusive license applications, the shared, non-exclusive licensing the 
Commission is proposing for the spectrum bands at issue would not 
result in mutually exclusive applications and thus would not be subject 
to such competitive bidding requirements. However, where Section 309(j) 
applies and to the extent that the Commission determines that it is in 
the public interest to adopt a licensing scheme that would result in 
mutually exclusive license applications, it proposes to use the general 
competitive bidding rules set forth in Part 1, Subpart Q, of the 
Commission's rules. The Commission seeks comment on these conclusions 
and proposals.
    52. With respect to application framework, the Commission is aiming 
to establish an application framework that would increase the 
regulatory certainty while reducing the administrative burden. One 
approach would be to apply the existing licensing framework for Part 87 
and Part 90 licensees to commercial space launch operations 
applications. Currently, applicants for Part 87 flight test stations 
and Part 90 radiolocation licenses are required to submit FCC Form 601 
and associated schedules through the Universal Licensing System (ULS). 
The Commission seeks comment on requiring applicants seeking 
authorization for 2200-2290 MHz as well as the proposed 420-430 MHz, 
2025-2110 MHz, and 5650-5925 MHz

[[Page 30869]]

frequencies to file an FCC Form 601 and applicable schedules through 
ULS under the appropriate rule part designation. The Commission seeks 
comment on the benefits and costs of this approach. Another approach 
would be to use aspects of Form 312 and Schedule S, with narrative 
legal and technical information similar to licenses under Part 25 and 
filing in the International Bureau Filing System (IBFS). The Commission 
seeks comment on these and any alternative approaches.
    53. Depending on the licensing scheme, for example, if the 
Commission adopts site-based licensing, would it be in the public 
interest to license the bands individually and use separate 
applications for separate spectrum bands? The Commission recognizes 
that not all operators will seek authorization for all of the bands at 
issue. Moreover, even where an applicant seeks multiple frequency 
bands, the applicant may not have the same site or area of operation 
for each of the bands. Would separate licensing of separate bands be 
less burdensome and provide more flexibility for applicants than a 
single multi-band license application process, similar to space station 
and earth station licensing? Would some of the differences in 
operational parameters be addressed more efficiently in a nationwide 
non-exclusive licensing application which would be coupled with a 
planned launch coordination registration? Are there any coordination 
issues in any of the frequency bands that would benefit from site 
licensing? Would it be simpler and less costly for the Commission to 
incorporate into the existing ULS or IBFS licensing processes and/or 
forms? What are the most efficient and effective way to license space 
launch operations that will provide operators with substantial benefits 
in terms of flexibility and efficiency, and will facilitate rapid 
implementation of this service?
    54. To support the evolving communications needs of space launch 
entities and to provide flexibility sufficient to support innovation 
and investment in new technologies, the Commission seeks comment on how 
to allow applicants for space launch licenses to request authorization 
covering all launches within their license terms. The Commission also 
seeks comment on any measures needed to implement a multi-launch 
approach. For example, how should the Commission account for any 
variances in vehicle trajectory or spectrum usage from launch to 
launch? Should operators be required to file a modification or 
notification to change certain characteristics of their license, and if 
so, which characteristics? Which of these variances must be reflected 
in the license and which ones can be addressed during a planned launch 
coordination stage on a case-by-case basis? What information should be 
required to be provided at the licensing application stage and the 
planned launch stage?
    55. If the Commission were to adopt a site-based licensing system 
for commercial space launch operations, under this proposal, applicants 
may request: (1) Fixed stations on the ground, (2) mobile stations on 
the ground, and/or (3) stations on launch vehicles. For fixed ground 
site locations, each applicant would include in its application the 
specific coordinates for its proposed fixed sites. Because most space 
launch entities conduct launches at specific fixed sites, the 
Commission does not anticipate that providing this information will be 
burdensome. For mobile stations on the ground, each applicant would 
specify a mobile area of operation, as defined by a center point and 
radius governing their area of operation. Would this definition of 
mobile area of operation provide licensees the flexibility needed to 
support the existing and future needs of space launch entities? The 
Commission seeks comment on this proposed definition of mobile area of 
operation and on alternate definitions that might further its goals of 
providing flexibility to space launch operators while protecting other 
uses in the bands. For example, should the mobile area of operation be 
defined by a specific county or some other metric, such as an option 
that allows the applicant to describe in text the proposed area of 
operation? For stations on launch vehicles, these stations can be 
authorized within a specific area of operation with a center point and 
radius coordinated and approved by an approved frequency coordinator. 
The Commission seeks comment on these proposals. The Commission further 
seeks comment on whether an applicant's ground stations in the United 
States should be licensed separately from the launch vehicle stations 
with which they are communicating, or whether those operations may be 
encompassed within a single license.
    56. Launch vehicle operations can be categorized broadly into two 
take-off modes: A vertical take-off like a traditional launch vehicle 
or a horizontal take-off from a runway. In addition, launch vehicles 
can be either expendable or reusable. Further, an operator may seek to 
use different launch vehicles from launch to launch. The Commission 
seeks comment on whether the proposed site-based licensing framework 
and area of operation definitions will adequately accommodate all of 
these initial launch and reentry scenarios. To the extent that 
commenters believe that the proposals cannot be applied satisfactorily 
to all take-off, flight, and landing operations, the Commission 
requests comment on alternate licensing options or definitions. The 
Commission asks commenters to evaluate the costs and benefits of these 
proposals as well as alternatives or additional requirements that may 
be needed to improve the application process and to address the 
specific needs of the commercial space launch industry.
    57. ITU Process. The Commission notes that the International 
Telecommunication Union (ITU) Radio Regulations are treaty provisions 
binding on the United States, and require that no transmitting station 
may be established or operated by a private person or by any enterprise 
without a license by or on behalf of the government of the country to 
which the station in question is subject. The Communications Act of 
1934, as amended, provides the FCC with authority to take actions to 
implement the ITU Radio Regulations. The operations of the radio 
facilities on launch vehicles therefore must be authorized consistent 
with the ITU Radio Regulations. Because these operations could cause 
harmful interference in other countries, the Commission proposes to 
require applicants to submit appropriate draft documentation for 
submission to the ITU. The Commission seeks comment on this proposal 
and whether there are other alternatives, including bi-lateral 
coordination with affected countries, to coordinate and minimize 
harmful interference from any FCC authorized space launch operation.
    58. The Commission seeks comment more generally on the ITU process 
as it relates to space launch vehicle licensing and operations. In the 
space station context, operators provide information to the Commission 
for submission to the ITU as part of the space station application or 
authorization process. If the Commission were to decide to apply this 
process, the Commission seeks comment on how and when launch vehicle 
operators should provide it with information for submission to the ITU. 
One possibility would be an approach where launch vehicle applicants or 
licensees submit information to the Commission for an ITU submission 
regarding an upcoming planned launch

[[Page 30870]]

a certain number of days prior to the planned launch. The Commission 
seeks comment on this approach and on alternatives. The Commission 
notes that this process is likely to vary depending on the licensing 
regime adopted, in particular on the scope of the license, such as 
whether a license covers multiple launches, including multiple launch 
trajectories. The Commission seeks comment on how the scope of the 
license should affect the applicant's submission of information for the 
ITU process.
    59. Space Launch Vehicle Operations Outside the United States. The 
Commission observes that launch vehicle flight paths will commonly 
extend downrange beyond the U.S. territories, requiring the space 
launch vehicle to communicate with ground-based telemetry, tracking, 
and telecommand stations located outside of the United States, 
particularly in the 2025-2110 MHz and 2200-2290 MHz frequency bands. 
Such communications could be considered within the scope of a Part 87 
authorization, for example, or be addressed by a licensing approach 
covering launch vehicles that would allow operations of such vehicles 
with ground stations both within and outside the U.S. territories, 
similar to a space station license under Part 25. The Commission seeks 
comment on these observations and the best way to authorize the use of 
the relevant spectrum bands to cover these operations.
    60. The Commission seeks comment on whether it should view such 
launch vehicle operations as being authorized under the applicable 
site-based license subject to the requirement that such use is 
identified in the application and ITU coordination is completed. Or 
should such use be separately authorized? Would an alternative type of 
license better address operations with ground/earth stations outside 
the United States? The Commission notes that the ability of a launch 
vehicle operator to obtain ground station authorizations outside the 
United States may be dependent upon U.S. launch vehicle licensing and/
or ITU coordination and/or notification procedures, as needed. The 
Commission seeks comment on the various licensing approaches, given the 
need for down-range communications, and on the role that ITU 
coordination should have in the particular licensing approach.
    61. Operations Inside the United States with non-United States 
Space Launch Vehicles. The Commission seeks comment on how the 
Commission should authorize ground station operations in the United 
States with space launch vehicles that are not authorized by the United 
States. For example, a space launch vehicle originating from a non-U.S. 
launch site and not otherwise authorized by the United States may seek 
to communicate with ground stations in the United States. Should the 
Commission adopt a process for ground station operators to request 
communications with these launch vehicles? For example, in the context 
of Part 25 satellite licensing, ground/earth station operators in the 
United States can apply for authority to communicate with non-U.S.-
licensed space stations. In the space launch context, should 
applications be filed by the U.S. ground/earth station operators? And, 
if so, what information should be required?
    62. Alternative Approach. The Commission also seeks comment on 
whether an authorization should be structured to cover all the bands 
allocated for commercial launch services, including operations outside 
the United States, discussed above. In other words, a single license 
application would be used to request multiple spectrum bands and 
associated uses on a single launch vehicle. For example, if a launch 
vehicle receives a flight termination signal in one frequency band and 
operates TT&C in a different frequency band, what are the costs and 
benefits to those operations being covered under a single space launch 
operations license? Would such an approach streamline our licensing 
processes or complicate them? What are the procedural and legal 
challenges that the Commission needs to consider with such a licensing 
approach? This approach also could be combined with the site-based or 
nationwide non-exclusive licensing approaches discussed above. Would 
such an approach serve the public interest? If the Commission were to 
adopt such an approach how can it be implemented? What licensing 
information should be required at the licensing application stage and 
the planned launch coordination stage? The Commission requests comment 
on these alternatives and seeks input on any other alternatives it 
should consider. The Commission asks that commenters discuss the 
impacts of a proposal, including associated administrative burdens or 
benefits.
    63. Frequency Coordination. Frequency coordination minimizes the 
likelihood of interference between operations and facilitates the 
efficient use of spectrum. The Commission seeks comment on the 
appropriate coordination process between Federal and non-Federal users 
to be used prior to the grant of an application for space launch 
frequencies as well as a coordination process for the ongoing use of 
these frequencies by operators during their license terms.
    64. As discussed in the Report and Order, the Commission shares 
licensing authority with NTIA. Section 301 establishes the Commission's 
licensing authority over non-Federal stations, and section 303 grants 
the Commission authority to ``[m]ake such rules and regulations and 
prescribe such restrictions and conditions, not inconsistent with law, 
as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this [Act.]''. NTIA 
maintains licensing authority over Federal stations pursuant to section 
305(a). The Commission and NTIA's shared licensing authority is guided 
by an established set of procedures for developing regulations for 
radio services in the shared bands and for authorizing frequency use by 
Federal agencies and Commission licensees.
    65. These procedures, set forth under the Memorandum of 
Understanding (MOU) between NTIA and the Commission, require the 
agencies to endeavor to give notice to each other of ``all proposed 
actions that could potentially cause interference'' to non-Federal and 
Federal operations respectively. NTIA coordinates with Federal spectrum 
users through the Interdepartment Radio Advisory Council (IRAC), a 
committee that includes representation from different government 
agencies, and typically includes a review period of 15 business days.
    66. Until the Commission adopts licensing and technical rules, the 
Commission will continue to coordinate STAs issued to commercial 
operators for space launch purposes with NTIA, pursuant to the MOU. 
Even after licensing and technical rules go into effect, the Commission 
will continue to have to pre-coordinate licenses with NTIA. Although 
the Commission is adopting one and proposing three other permanent non-
Federal allocations for these bands, coordination is still required for 
use of these frequencies, given the potential for impacts to and from 
Federal users in these bands, as well as the potential for harmful 
interference among non-Federal users. The Commission therefore seeks 
input on a coordination procedure that will adequately minimize the 
potential for harmful interference, while also minimizing burdens on 
launch operators to the extent possible.
    67. Pre-grant coordination. To help ensure that users in a band are 
protected from harmful interference, the Commission has incorporated 
various

[[Page 30871]]

coordination requirements in its service rules, particularly in bands 
with shared use, in addition to the standard IRAC process. For example, 
applicants for flight test station licenses under Part 87, Subpart J 
are required to meet all applicable frequency coordination 
requirements. Section 87.305 requires that, prior to submission of an 
application to the Commission, a frequency advisory committee must 
coordinate all frequency requests with applicable Federal Government 
area frequency coordinators and provide recommendations regarding 
operating parameters. A flight test station application must include a 
frequency coordination statement from the frequency advisory committee, 
which includes a technical evaluation and recommendations to minimize 
interference. Once the application is submitted to the Commission, the 
request is then also submitted to NTIA for coordination, pursuant to 
the FCC and NTIA's MOU.
    68. The Commission seeks comment on whether it should require 
applicants for a license in space launch frequencies to undergo a pre-
application coordination requirement similar to that specified in Sec.  
87.305. This pre-application coordination requirement historically has 
been successful in minimizing the risk of harmful interference between 
flight test stations and other users of the band. Adopting a similar 
process may be helpful in the space launch context given the heavy 
usage of these bands by Federal entities as well as other space launch 
operators and the potential of interference to these operations. While 
it may, on first glance, seem that there is duplicative review, the 
pre-application coordination helps to narrow down the acceptable 
operating parameters of the use, thereby reducing administrative 
burdens and expediting review once the application is submitted. The 
Commission seeks comment on whether to apply this pre-application 
coordination process, or whether, in the alternative, it should impose 
a different coordination process.
    69. In this regard, the Commission observes that Federal entities 
seeking to use the 2025-2110 MHz band for TT&C uplink purposes must 
complete a similar coordination process prior to submitting an 
application for authorization to NTIA. A Federal entity must coordinate 
with all BAS and other non-Federal incumbents that may be affected by 
the Federal operation prior to submitting an application, and must 
engage the local BAS frequency coordinator(s), where available, in 
support of achieving such coordination. To the extent that the 
Commission adopts a non-Federal allocation in the 2025-2110 MHz band 
for TT&C uplink purposes, it seeks comment on whether to require 
commercial space launch operators seeking to use the band to follow the 
same pre-application coordination process to help ensure that launch 
operations will not cause harmful interference to applicable non-
Federal and Federal incumbents in the band. Alternatively, the 
Commission seeks comment as to whether it should apply a different pre-
application coordination, such as the process identified in Sec.  
87.305.
    70. If the Commission determines it would be in the public interest 
to adopt a pre-application coordination requirement, should the 
Commission appoint a designated frequency coordinator to streamline the 
coordination process? The Commission designated the Aerospace and 
Flight Test Radio Coordinating Council (AFTRCC) as the frequency 
coordinating committee for non-Government flight test telemetry station 
assignments in the 1435-1535 MHz band and extended authority to the 
2310-2320 MHz and 2345-2390 MHz bands. If the Commission decides to 
appoint a specific frequency coordinator, would it be in the public 
interest to extend AFTRCC's authority, or should the Commission appoint 
a different entity?
    71. Post-grant coordination. Given that the license terms 
associated with permanent authorizations may span several years, the 
Commission seeks comment on coordination between space launch licensees 
and other users of the respective bands for separate launch operations. 
The Commission notes that experimental STAs are approved, and thereby 
coordinated, on a per launch basis. By contrast, the Part 87 flight 
test rules do not require additional formal coordination once an 
application has been granted. Given the complicated logistics entailed 
in a space launch operation, as well as changes in the operational 
environment on and around Federal ranges and other sites that are 
likely to occur over time, the Commission does not believe that a one-
time coordination would be effective to cover all launches that occur 
during the term of an operator's license. At the same time, the 
Commission also wishes to avoid a coordination process that is overly 
burdensome for launch operators or that injects uncertainty as to 
spectrum access. The Commission requests that commenters propose 
solutions for this issue in their comments.
    72. The Commission seeks comment on other coordination processes 
that are streamlined and efficient for space launch entities yet are 
also adequately protective of Federal operations and consistent with 
the provisions of the Commission and NTIA's MOU. The Commission asks 
that commenters include detailed coordination procedures in their 
proposals, as well as the cost and benefits of the proposed process. 
The Commission notes that, given the importance in minimizing the 
potential for harmful interference to Federal and non-Federal uses 
alike in these bands, the Commission does not anticipate that 
coordination procedures would include a ``shot clock''--i.e., a 
provision that permits launch operators to move forward if review has 
not been completed by a certain date. The Commission seeks comment, 
however, on whether notification procedures could, under some 
circumstances or conditions, be sufficient to meet coordination 
requirements.
    73. Technical Rules for Space Launch Operations. The Commission 
seeks comment on a proposed technical framework and on additional 
technical requirements for operations in the non-Federal allocations in 
the 2200-2290 MHz band and for operations in the proposed non-Federal 
allocations in the 420-430 MHz, 2025-2110, and 5650-5925 MHz bands. The 
Commission seeks to develop a technical framework and requirements that 
can address the unique needs of the commercial space sector.
    74. The Commission's goal in establishing a technical framework for 
commercial space launch operations is to develop rules that support the 
evolving interests and requirements of commercial space entities while 
minimizing harmful interference between Federal and non-Federal 
operations. The Commission finds that the current framework that 
applies to Federal operators offers a predictable and tested model that 
promotes the efficient use of spectrum while minimizing interference 
among users in these bands. The Commission therefore proposes to adopt 
a similar set of technical rules to non-Federal space launch operations 
in the newly allocated 2200-2290 MHz band as well as in the proposed 
allocations. The Commission finds that adopting a technical framework 
similar to that which currently applies to Federal operations will 
promote interoperability and allow commercial launch providers to 
benefit from the economies of scale inherent from using the same radio 
systems for both Federal agencies and commercial customers.
    75. In the 2013 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, the Commission 
sought comment generally on how to support

[[Page 30872]]

the anticipated growth of the commercial space launch industry. The 
Commission asked whether providing non-Federal access to this spectrum 
would allow commercial space launch operators to incur lower 
development costs because they would be able to use the same 
communications systems for both Federal and non-Federal launches.
    76. Several commenters support allocations and service rules that 
promote interoperability between Federal and commercial systems. For 
example, New Mexico Spaceport Authority (NMSA) maintains that 
interoperability between ranges avoids increased costs for development, 
hardware acquisition, operations, and testing; saves on opportunity 
costs; increases competition among launch providers and launch sites; 
and promotes the industry overall.
    77. The Commission seeks comment on its proposal to model a 
technical framework on rules applicable to Federal launch operations. 
The Commission discusses below, as examples of this approach, certain 
technical requirements set forth in NTIA rules or ITU Radio Regulations 
and seeks comment on whether to apply similar rules to the 2200-2290 
MHz band, as well as the proposed 420-430 MHz, 2025-2110 MHz, and 5650-
5925 MHz allocations. The Commission seeks comment on other technical 
requirements that apply to Federal space launch operations in the 
relevant bands, such as any requirements regarding frequency tolerance, 
emissions classifications, or emissions levels, the benefits and costs 
of such requirements, whether the Commission should apply these 
requirements to non-Federal operations, and any additional technical 
rules needed to achieve its goals. For example, Table 5.2.1 of the NTIA 
Manual specifies frequency tolerance standards for aeronautical, space, 
and radiolocation stations in the frequencies at issue in this 
proceeding among others. The Commission seeks comment on adopting these 
or alternative frequency tolerance standards.
    78. 2200-2290 MHz. The 2200-2290 MHz band typically is used, in 
non-Federal space launch operations, for sending telemetry data from 
the launch vehicle to ground controllers. NTIA explains that Federal 
operations in the band primarily consist of tracking, telemetry, and 
control data communications for control of spacecraft. The band is used 
by Federal agencies in space operation, space research and Earth 
exploration-satellite service (space-to-Earth) for communications with 
earth stations and return links via TDRSS (space-to-space), which 
provides links between low earth orbiting spacecraft and earth 
stations. Federal agencies and the military also use this band for 
terrestrial telemetry operations for aircraft, missile flight testing, 
land and maritime mobile communications, and fixed point-to-point 
microwave relay communications.
    79. As discussed above, the Commission has adopted a Space 
Operation allocation for the 2200-2290 MHz band and is also seeking 
comment on adopting a Mobile allocation in this band. As space launch 
operations in this band may potentially operate under this dual 
regulatory approach, the Commission seeks comment on technical 
requirements under both a space operations and aeronautical mobile 
allocation, including whether these technical rules align with NTIA's 
requirements for both Federal and non-Federal space operations and how 
the Commission might promote consistency between and among the various, 
similarly situated services authorized in the band.
    80. Emission mask. Under NTIA's space operations requirements, 
earth and space stations in the space operations service above 470 MHz 
must comply with the emissions mask standard established in section 
5.6.2 of the NTIA Manual. Section 5.6.2 provides that for frequencies 
offset from the assigned frequency less than the 50 percent of the 
necessary bandwidth, no attenuation is required. At a frequency offset 
equal to 50 percent of the necessary bandwidth, an attenuation of at 
least 8 dB is required. Frequencies offset more than 50 percent of the 
necessary bandwidth should be attenuated in accordance with a specified 
formula dependent on necessary bandwidth and frequency displaced from 
the center of the emission bandwidth.
    81. Section 5.3.9 of the NTIA Manual provides that aeronautical 
telemetry operation in the 2200-2290 MHz band must meet the emissions 
limits from Chapter 2 of the Inter-Range Instrumentation Group (IRIG) 
Standard 106-15, Part 1. Chapter 2 of IRIG Standard 106-15, Part 1 
(hereinafter IRIG Standard 106-15), in turn, includes the following 
aeronautical telemetry spectral mask: All spectral components larger 
than -[55 + 10xlog(P)] dBc (i.e., larger than -25 dBm) at the 
transmitter output must be within the spectral mask calculated using 
the following equation:

M(f) = K + 90 log(R)-100 log [verbar]f-fc[verbar]; [verbar]f-fc[verbar] 
>= R/m

Where:

M(f) = power (dBc) at frequency f (MHz)
K = -20 for analog signals
K = -28 for binary signals
K = -61 for FQPSK-B, FQPSK-JR, SOQPSK-TG
K = -73 for ARTM CPM
fc = transmitter center frequency (MHz)
R = bit rate (Mbps) for digital signals or ([Delta]f +fmax)(MHz) for 
analog FM signals
M = number of states in modulating signal (m = 2 for binary signals, 
m = 4 for quaternary signals and analog signals)
[Delta]f = peak deviation
fmax = maximum modulation frequency

    82. While the Commission seeks to align the technical parameters 
used by Federal and non-Federal operations to facilitate 
interoperability, it also seeks to introduce measures that will help 
licensees to simplify or streamline operations, while ensuring that 
other users in the band are protected. To that end, the Commission 
requests comment on the utility of using one specific mask for all non-
Federal operations in the band as an alternative to NTIA's dual 
emissions mask approach. For example, the Commission seeks comment on 
applying the space operations emissions mask described above at all 
stages of flight, or whether alternatively the emission limits for 
space stations found in Part 25 should be applied. As another 
alternative, the Commission seeks comment on the use of the emission 
mask described in part 87 of the Commission's rules: (1) On any 
frequency removed from the assigned frequency by more than 50 percent, 
up to and including 100 percent of the authorized bandwidth, at least 
25 decibels attenuation; (2) on any frequency removed from the assigned 
frequency by more than 100 percent, up to and including 250 percent of 
the authorized bandwidth, at least 35 decibels attenuation; and (3) on 
any frequency removed from the assigned frequency by more than 250 
percent of the authorized bandwidth, at least 43 + 10 log(pY) decibels 
or 80 decibels, whichever is the lesser attenuation. The Commission 
seeks comment on these emission masks and whether such masks are 
appropriate notwithstanding our goal of promoting interoperability. 
Alternatively, the Commission seeks comment on whether to follow the 
NTIA approach of applying the aeronautical telemetry and space 
operations emission masks referenced by the NTIA Manual to first-stage 
and subsequent telemetry operations in the band, respectively, or any 
other alternatives.
    83. Power limits. The RCC's IRIG Standard 106-15 that NTIA applies 
to aeronautical telemetry in the 2200-2290 MHz band provides that the 
EIRP of a transmitter shall not exceed 25 watts and that the output 
power shall not

[[Page 30873]]

exceed 25 watts. NTIA's space operations requirements, in contrast, do 
not impose a power limit, and instead rely on a power flux-density 
limit. Consistent with the Federal requirements, the Commission seeks 
comment on whether to limit first-stage operations to an effective 
radiated power of 25 watts and a transmitter output power of up to 25 
watts, and below, the Commission seeks comment on whether to apply a 
power flux-density limit on operations after the first stage. 
Alternatively, if the Commission adopts a power flux-density limit in 
the band, the Commission seeks comment on whether no further limit on 
power is necessary, or whether it should adopt an alternative to the 
power limit in IRIG Standard 106-15.
    84. Power flux-density limits applicable to second-stage 
operations. The ITU Radio Regulations establish power flux-density 
limits at the surface of the Earth from space research, space operation 
and Earth exploration-satellite services in the 2025-2110 MHz and 2200-
2290 MHz bands in order to protect the fixed and mobile services in 
those bands. These limits are reflected in section 8.2.36 of the NTIA 
Manual. The Commission seeks comment above on potentially treating 
commercial space operations in the band under both a mobile service and 
space operation service allocation framework. If the Commission adopts 
this approach, what should be the boundary between these regulatory 
frameworks for purposes of applying the ITU power-flux density limits? 
Should the ITU power flux-density limits apply when the launch vehicle 
is above a specified altitude, at a certain time after launch, at a 
particular stage of operation, or based on some other fashion on launch 
operations in the band? For example, the power flux-density limits 
could apply after 15 minutes of flight, or alternatively, could apply 
to either the second or subsequent stage of the launch vehicles 
operation. Would applying the power-flux density limit above a certain 
altitude better accommodate reentry operations as well? To the extent 
NTIA requires space launch operations to meet the PFD limit, at what 
stage of the launch (or at what demarcation point) does NTIA require 
compliance with the limit? Should the Commission adopt a parallel 
requirement in its technical rules? The Commission further seeks 
comment on whether, aside from the interest in harmonization, it should 
impose the power flux-density limit on operations in the 2200-2290 MHz 
band in a reference bandwidth of 1 megahertz instead of 4 kilohertz, 
consistent with Recommendation ITU-R SA.1273.
    85. 420-430 MHz. As noted, the 420-430 MHz band typically is used 
for sending flight termination commands from ground control to the 
launch vehicle, if necessary, during launch. Non-Federal entities may 
obtain access to this band through STAs. NTIA explains that the band is 
also used by the military and other Federal agencies for a number of 
important radar applications, multi-function position-location 
communications systems, and test range telecommand and flight 
termination systems, making the band essential to national security.
    86. The Commission recognizes that several commercial space launch 
entities have migrated or are in the process of migrating the flight 
termination signal from transmission of a signal from the ground 
station to launch vehicle to an automated function within the launch 
vehicles via onboard systems (i.e., the flight termination sequence is 
now initiated from onboard the launch vehicle). Moreover, launches to 
date have occurred at Federal ranges, so access to this band by 
commercial launch providers has not been necessary. However, the 
Commission expects this to change as companies transition towards using 
commercial launch sites in the future. Therefore, adopting technical 
rules for commercial flight termination functions in the 420-430 MHz 
band is critical for ensuring the public is protected during space 
launches. To facilitate seamless operation with respect to Federal and 
non-Federal operations, the Commission seeks comment on whether to 
apply the same technical specifications for flight termination used by 
Federal space launches to non-Federal operations. For example, below, 
the Commission seeks comment on applying NTIA rules regarding emission 
mask and power limits.
    87. Emission mask. NTIA requires land/mobile stations in the 420-
430 MHz band to meet the standard established in section 5.2.2.2. This 
section requires that the mean power of any emission supplied to the 
antenna transmission line, as compared with the mean power of the 
fundamental, must be in accordance with the following: (a) On any 
frequency removed from the assigned frequency by more than 75 percent, 
up to and including 150 percent, of the authorized bandwidth, at least 
25 decibels attenuation; (b) on any frequency removed from the assigned 
frequency by more than 150 percent, up to and including 300 percent, of 
the authorized bandwidth, at least 35 decibels attenuation; and (c) on 
any frequency removed from the assigned frequency by more than 300 
percent of the authorized bandwidth, two levels of attenuation 
depending on whether the transmitter operates with mean power of (1) 
less than 5 kilowatts or (2) 5 kilowatts or greater.
    88. To facilitate similar treatment among non-Federal and Federal 
launches, the Commission proposes to apply an emission mask similar to 
section 5.2.2.2 to commercial launch operators using the 420-430 MHz 
band for flight termination purposes. The Commission seeks comment on 
the proposed emission mask. The Commission requests comment on 
alternative limits, and on the need for an emission mask generally for 
the transmission of this singular function.
    89. Power limits. NTIA permits a maximum power limit of 1 kW of 
transmit power for range safety operations in the 420-450 MHz bands, 
which include flight termination operations such as self-destruct 
commands. Requests for additional power must be coordinated with and 
agreed to by the Commission. Range safety operations at three specific 
locations--Vandenberg AFB, CA; White Sands Missile Range, NM; and Cape 
Canaveral AFS, FL--may be authorized up to 10 kW transmit power without 
Commission coordination.
    90. The Commission aims to provide flexibility to space launch 
operators using this band, but the Commission recognizes that limits 
are particularly necessary in this band, given that the intended use of 
this band is for safety-of-life applications. Consistent with the NTIA 
requirements, and with NTIA's stated preference for non-Federal launch 
operations in the band, the Commission proposes to permit an effective 
radiated power of up to 1000 watts by non-Federal launch providers. The 
Commission seeks comment on whether the proposed limits are sufficient 
to provide both the flexibility and the protection necessary to this 
safety-of-life application. The Commission also seeks comment on 
whether to consider alternative limits.
    91. 2025-2110 MHz. The 2025-2110 MHz band supports fixed and mobile 
services on a primary basis for non-Federal terrestrial use. The band 
is allocated to BAS and LTTS for fixed and mobile use and to CARS for 
mobile use only. Federal operations include communications with 
satellites or other space stations, as well as between satellites or 
spacecraft, occurring under primary allocations for space operations 
(Earth-to-space) (space-to-space), space research (Earth-to-space) 
(space-to-space), or Earth exploration-satellite

[[Page 30874]]

service (Earth-to-space) (space-to-space). Federal agencies operate 
earth stations in this band for tracking and command of manned and 
unmanned Earth-orbiting satellites and space vehicles either for Earth-
to-space links for satellites in all types of orbits or through space-
to-space links using TDRSS. In addition, the National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) operates earth stations in this band 
to control the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) 
and Polar Operational Environmental Satellite (POES) meteorological 
satellite systems. To facilitate the relocation of military operations 
from the 2155-2180 MHz band, the 2025-2110 MHz band also includes a 
primary Federal allocation for fixed and mobile services, restricted to 
use by the military services and subject to certain provisions codified 
in footnote US92 of the U.S. Table.
    92. Emission mask. The most analogous authorized Federal operation 
in the 2025-2110 MHz band is earth station telecommand transmissions to 
spacecraft, which operate under space operations rules. As discussed 
above, NTIA requires that earth and space stations in the space 
operations service above 470 MHz comply with the emissions mask 
standards established in section 5.6.2 of the NTIA Manual. Section 
5.6.2 provides that for frequencies offset from the assigned frequency 
less than the 50 percent of the necessary bandwidth, no attenuation is 
required. At a frequency offset equal to 50 percent of the necessary 
bandwidth, an attenuation of at least 8 dB is required. Frequencies 
offset more than 50 percent of the necessary bandwidth should be 
attenuated in accordance with a specified formula dependent on 
necessary bandwidth and frequency displaced from the center of the 
emission bandwidth.
    93. Consistent with the Commission's general approach, the 
Commission proposes to adopt the NTIA's emissions mask described above 
for commercial space launch transmissions in the 2025-2110 MHz band, 
except that the Commission proposes to apply attenuation requirements 
to the licensee's assigned frequencies rather than requiring a separate 
calculation of necessary bandwidth. The Commission seeks comment on 
this proposal, and on whether the Commission should adopt an 
alternative emissions mask.
    94. Power limits. NTIA requires that the EIRP transmitted in any 
direction towards the horizon by a Federal earth station in bands 
between 1 GHz and 15 GHz that are shared with stations in the fixed or 
mobile service, which includes the 2025-2110 MHz band, shall not (with 
limited exceptions) exceed the following limits:

 +40 dBW in any 4 kHz band for u <= 0[deg]
 +40+3u dBW in any 4 kHz band for 0[deg] < u <= 5[deg]
where u is the angle of elevation of the horizon viewed from the center 
of radiation of the antenna of the earth station and measured in 
degrees as positive above the horizontal plane and negative below it.

    95. Consistent with the Commission's general approach, the 
Commission proposes to adopt the NTIA's limit on maximum transmitted 
EIRP for commercial space launch transmissions in the 2025-2110 MHz 
band. The Commission seeks comment on this proposal, and on whether the 
Commission should adopt an alternative maximum power limit.
    96. 5650-5925 MHz. The 5650-5925 MHz band supports launch vehicle 
radar tracking. As noted, tracking of a launch vehicle typically 
involves use of a transponder that is placed on the launch vehicle. The 
transponder transmits a radar signal that is received at a ground-based 
tracking station. The radar signal provides ground controllers with 
more precise and accurate tracking information for the launch vehicle. 
NTIA explains that the Department of Defense (DoD) uses this band for a 
wide variety of radar applications, including anti-air warfare radars, 
which are part of an advanced ground-based air defense missile system. 
DoD and NASA also use this band for a variety of land-based and 
shipborne radars. The 5650-5925 MHz band also supports daily DoD and 
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) 
missions.
    97. Section 5.5 of the NTIA Manual contains the technical rules for 
Federal radar operations in the 5650-5925 MHz band. Section 5.5 
provides five classifications of radar (Criteria A through E) 
incorporating NTIA's Radar Spectrum Engineering Criteria (RSEC). The 
RSEC establishes the technical standards for Federal radar use. 
Operations in the 5650-5925 MHz band are governed by RSEC Criteria A, 
RSEC Criteria B, or RSEC Criteria C, depending on the system 
characteristics and peak operating power of the radar system. RSEC 
Criteria A radars include radars with the following system 
characteristics: (1) Non-pulsed radars of 40 watts or less rated 
average power; (2) pulsed radars of 1 kW or less rated peak power; (3) 
radars with an operating frequency above 40 GHz; and (4) expendable, 
non-recoverable radars on missiles. Criteria B applies if the radar 
system operates with a peak power over 1000 Watts and less than 100 kW. 
Criteria C applies if the system operates with less than 1000 Watts. 
The NTIA Manual also includes receiver standards.
    98. Emission mask. To facilitate the interoperable use of tracking 
radar equipment, the Commission proposes that Commission licensees that 
plan to utilize the 5650-5925 MHz band for launch vehicle tracking will 
need to comply with the applicable RSEC requirements in the NTIA 
Manual. The NTIA Manual provides emission masks for RSEC Criteria A, 
RSEC Criteria B, and RSEC Criteria C. The Commission proposes to 
incorporate the emission masks listed in the NTIA Manual. The 
Commission seeks comment on this proposal and also request the 
submission of any alternative emission masks that may be applicable for 
operations in the band.
    99. Power limits. While NTIA requires radar operations to meet RSEC 
technical requirements, neither the RSEC requirements nor ITU Radio 
Regulations establish a specific power limitation for emissions inside 
the assigned bandwidth for radar operations in the 5650-5925 MHz band. 
However, the Commission notes that an ITU Recommendation, ITU-R M.1638-
1, provides characteristics and sharing studies for certain 
radiolocation uses in the 5250-5850 MHz band that may be of use in 
helping to establish appropriate technical standards for radar tracking 
operations in the 5650-5925 MHz band. The Commission seeks comment on 
whether it is appropriate to derive power limits for operations in the 
5650-5925 MHz band using parameters described in Recommendation ITU-R 
M.1638-1, specifically those found in Annex 1, Table 2, of the 
recommendation. The Commission seeks comment on appropriate limit(s) 
identified in the recommendation as well as alternative power levels.
    100. Accommodation of other services. The Commission sought comment 
above on potential restrictions to the non-Federal radiolocation 
allocation in the 5650-5925 MHz band to enable coexistence with other 
operations in portions of this band. These other operations include the 
Intelligent Transportation Systems that operate in 5895-5925 MHz, U-NII 
devices that operate in 5650-5895 MHz, and fixed-satellite service 
uplinks that operate in 5850-5925 MHz. The Commission seeks comment on 
whether to adopt requirements or restrictions in the service rules for 
the radiolocation service to facilitate coexistence with

[[Page 30875]]

these other operations. These may include, for example, limiting the 
portions of the band and/or locations where radiolocation operations 
may be conducted, restricting use of the radiolocation service only to 
transponders attached to launch vehicles, requiring coordination with 
these other operations, or limiting the power that radiolocation 
stations may transmit in the direction of the geostationary arc.
    101. 2360-2395 MHz. As noted in the NPRM, three frequencies in the 
2360-2395 MHz band are available for both Federal and non-Federal 
telemetry and telecommand use for launch and reentry vehicles. This 
band is currently regulated under Subpart J of the Commission's Part 87 
rules. As discussed in Section IV.B, one proposal is to create a 
separate subpart under the Part 87 rules for the commercial space 
launch operations under the non-Federal space operations allocation the 
Commission adopts today for the 2200-2290 MHz band. The Commission 
seeks comment on whether to administer the 2360-2395 MHz space launch 
use under this new subpart or whether to retain the Subpart J 
designation. If the Commission administers the 2360-2395 MHz space 
launch use under the new subpart, should it apply the licensing scheme 
set forth under the new subpart or the existing licensing framework 
provided under the current Subpart J flight testing rules? In that 
event, should the Commission continue to apply the technical rules 
currently applicable to these services? Moreover, if the Commission 
continue to apply the Subpart J rules to the 2360-2395 MHz frequencies 
that may be used for space launch operations, should the Commission 
eliminate or amend any requirements under that subpart, including 
technical requirements such as power and emission limits, in light of 
other rule changes it proposes to adopt today? The Commission also 
notes that space launch telemetry and telecommand operations in the 
2360-2395 MHz band occur under a Mobile allocation. In contrast, the 
Commission has adopted a Space Operation allocation for space launch 
telemetry operations in the 2200-2290 MHz band, while seeking comment 
on whether to add a Mobile allocation, and proposes to adopt a Space 
Operation allocation for space launch telecommand operations in the 
2025-2110 MHz band. The Commission seeks comment on whether, to 
facilitate any changes it should make to the 2360-2395 MHz band space 
launch rules, it should add a primary Space Operation allocation to the 
band, limited to launch vehicle telemetry and associated telecommand 
operations, subject to the same restrictions as apply to such 
operations under the Mobile allocation as specified in footnote US276 
of the U.S. Table.
    102. While there has been substantial development of equipment for 
commercial space launches operating in the 2200-2290 MHz band, the 
Commission has very limited information on the state of commercial 
space launch equipment operating in the 2360-2395 MHz band. 
Accordingly, the Commission seeks comment on the current state of 
equipment development for commercial space launch purposes in the band. 
The Commission seeks comment on whether any such equipment that has 
equipment authorization now or is currently in development should be 
grandfathered from any rule changes it adopts for the 2360-2395 MHz 
band.
    103. Equipment Authorization. Radio Frequency (RF) devices are 
required to be properly authorized under 47 CFR part 2 prior to being 
marketed or imported into the United States. Equipment that contains an 
RF device must be authorized in accordance with the appropriate 
procedures specified in 47 CFR part 2, subpart J, with certain limited 
exceptions. These requirements not only minimize the potential for 
harmful interference, but also ensure that the equipment complies with 
the rules that address other policy objectives--such as human RF 
exposure limits. The Commission has two different approval procedures 
for equipment authorization--Certification and Supplier's Declaration 
of Conformity (SDoC). The rule part governing the service under which 
the equipment operates may require that such equipment be authorized 
under SDoC or receive a grant of certification from a Telecommunication 
Certification Body. In some instances, a device may perform different 
functions under multiple rule parts, resulting in the device being 
subject to more than one type of approval procedure. Part 25, for 
example, requires equipment authorization for portable earth-station 
transceivers, e.g., handsets, body-worn devices, antenna-in-keyboard 
notebook computers, as well as satellite digital audio radio service 
(SDARS) terrestrial repeaters and mobile-satellite service (MSS) 
ancillary terrestrial component (ATC) base stations and mobile 
transceivers. Part 87 generally requires certification for aviation 
services equipment, with limited exceptions such as flight test station 
transmitters for limited time periods. In the context of space launch 
operations, should the Commission require Part 2 equipment 
authorization for the radio frequencies devices that are being used to 
provide space launch operations and if so, which procedure is 
appropriate? Are there any additional or alternative compliance 
requirements or authorization processes specified in any of our rule 
parts, including Part 25, Part 87, or Part 90, that may be appropriate 
for space launch radio frequency devices or would provide analogous 
models for authorizing such equipment? What should such rules, if any, 
look like? Commenters should discuss cost and benefits of any proposed 
equipment authorization process and how such a process would serve the 
public interest while ensuring the equipment complies with the 
technical rules applicable to space launch operations.
    104. Licensing and Operating Rules for Payload Activities. Although 
the primary focus of this proceeding is on radio-frequency use by space 
launch vehicles, space launch operations include launches of satellites 
and other commercial payloads. Accordingly, the Commission also seeks 
comment on whether there are improvements to the licensing process that 
could facilitate more routine licensing for certain payload activities 
currently addressed through experimental licensing. Launch payloads 
vary, from traditional geostationary and small satellites, to cargo 
capsules destined for the ISS, including the SpaceX Crew Dragon capsule 
transporting human crew to the ISS. Although most commercial payload 
needs for radiofrequency are addressed through the satellite licensing 
provisions in Part 25 of the Commission's rules, there are some types 
of activities that are currently addressed through experimental 
licensing.
    105. For example, involving some of the same frequency bands that 
are used for space launch activities, SpaceX's cargo and crew capsules 
utilize S-band frequencies. For links between the capsule and ground 
stations, SpaceX uses 2106 MHz (earth-to-space) and 2216 MHz (space-to-
earth); SpaceX also uses 2203.2 MHz for links between the capsule and 
the ISS, 2028.78 MHz for links between the ISS and the capsule, 2287.5 
MHz for links between the capsule and TDRSS, and 2106.4 MHZ for TDRSS 
to the Capsule. In addition to SpaceX, another example is the Orbital 
Sciences Corporation, a Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation Affiliate, 
and its operations of the Cygnus spacecraft for transporting cargo to 
ISS, and deploying satellites. The Cygnus spacecraft has used 2287.5 
(space-to-Earth) as well as 2287.5 MHz

[[Page 30876]]

for links between the Cygnus spacecraft and TDRSS, and 2203.2 MHz for 
links between the Cygnus spacecraft and the ISS. The Commission seeks 
comment on how to establish frequency allocations and license processes 
to facilitate commercial space launch operations involving operations 
of payloads.
    106. The Commission seeks comment on whether any changes to the 
Table of Frequency Allocations it is adopting or proposing herein for 
the 2025-2110 MHz and 2200-2290 MHz frequency bands are needed to 
provide for these payload communications. What are the spectrum 
requirements for such operations? Are there other frequency bands that 
the Commission should also consider for such uses? Recognizing that 
this use would also be subject to coordination with NTIA, are there 
additional technical provisions that would facilitate compatibility 
with existing Federal and other Non-Federal operations in these 
frequency bands?
    107. In addition, the Commission seeks comment on whether such 
payload operations should be addressed in Part 25 of the Commission's 
rules. If so, as these newer commercial operations were not considered 
when many of the rules were first adopted, are there any modifications 
to the current Part 25 rules (e.g., default rules, bond requirements, 
fees, etc.) that may facilitate licensing? Would a streamlined process 
along the lines of the recently adopted process for small satellites be 
appropriate for such operations? Are there other licensing models that 
can be better suited for the needs of these payload operations?
    108. The Commission is also aware of at least one launch operator, 
Rocket Lab, which intends to operate a spacecraft, derived from a 
launch vehicle upper stage, which will remain in orbit and function as 
a payload, equipped with various radios and sensors designed for 
longer-term operations. One option to license such operation is to 
require the applicant to apply for both a launch operation license to 
cover the launch vehicle and a separate license for orbital insertion 
activities to cover subsequent payload activities, assuming the 
Commission decides to separate these activities and govern them under 
separate rule parts (e.g., Part 87 for the launch activities and Part 
25 for the payload activities). To that end, the Commission seeks 
comment on this proposal and on the point at which operations should be 
considered to have switched from launch vehicle operations to payload 
operations (i.e., which operations should be covered by the Part 87 
license and which by the Part 25 license). In addition, reentry 
operations may be necessary for certain payload vehicles, especially 
those transporting human crew. The Commission seeks comment on whether 
there should be distinct regulatory framework for such commercial 
payload transportation as well as the appropriate authorization 
approach for such reentry operations. Finally, are there other 
approaches the Commission should consider for licensing the 
radiofrequency operations of such objects?
    109. In this FNPRM, the Commission separates issues associated with 
the licensing of commercial space launch operations into space launch 
vehicle communications operations (including space launch vehicle 
reentry) and payload communications operations--due to their distinct 
communications operations and underlying missions. The Commission 
believes that the telemetry, tracking, and command functions associated 
with the vehicle launch phase of a space launch are more akin to 
terrestrial aeronautical mobile and radiolocation operations under 
Parts 87 and 90, respectively, while the payload stage and associated 
communications may be more aptly viewed as space operations. Further, 
the Commission anticipates that operators may have different spectrum 
needs or seek to address them in different ways. Given these 
differences, are there any advantages of establishing separate 
licensing for these activities? Would such an approach provide space 
launch operators with greater flexibility to seek spectrum tailored to 
their operations? That said, the Commission seeks comment on other 
alternatives, including whether it would be appropriate and serve the 
public interest to license all phases of a commercial space operation 
under one authorization. The Commission seeks comment on the costs and 
benefits of such an authorization, including the possible consequences 
of issuing a single license to cover all aspects of a commercial launch 
operation and the associated administrative burdens and benefits. For 
example, would consigning all necessary information under one 
authorization inadvertently complicate the application and licensing 
process given the disparate operations involved rather than 
streamlining or simplifying it? What are the procedural and legal 
challenges that the Commission needs to consider with such a licensing 
approach?
    110. Launch Vehicle-Satellite Communications. While the new 
proposed licensing rules for space launch operations would support 
transmissions for TT&C between commercial space launch vehicles and 
ground stations, the Commission also seeks comment on authorizing 
communications between space launch vehicles and other space stations, 
including satellites. In some instances, the Commission observes that 
radios designed for communications with the Globalstar or Iridium 
satellite systems, for example, have been used on space launch vehicles 
in order to utilize those systems for data relay, including for TT&C 
purposes. The Commission seeks comment on whether such operations 
should continue to be licensed on an experimental or otherwise case-by-
case basis, or whether these types of operations could be authorized as 
part of one of the approaches to space launch vehicle licensing 
discussed in this FNPRM. If commenters support authorization for such 
uses on a regular basis, are any changes needed to the Table of 
Frequency Allocations to provide for such operations? Are there 
existing frameworks from which the Commission could draw to authorize 
space launch vehicle to satellite communications through a footnote to 
the domestic Table of Frequency Allocations and appropriate additions 
or revisions to Part 25? What additional technical provisions would be 
needed to ensure compatibility with existing systems and services? 
Commenters proposing any licensing approaches should also discuss costs 
and benefits of such approaches, including associated administrative 
burdens or benefits, and how their proposals would ensure the most 
efficient and effective use of the spectrum in the public interest. For 
example, the Commission seeks comment on whether any proposed licensing 
approach for such operations would streamline the licensing processes 
or complicate them, and on the procedural and legal challenges that the 
need to be considered with such an approach.
    111. Expanded Federal Use of the non-Federal FSS and MSS Bands. 
Over the past few years, U.S. space policies have evolved to encourage 
the Federal Government to use commercial space-related systems to meet 
its satellite communications needs through commercial leasing, which 
can include investment in Federal earth stations. However, current 
rules do not protect Federal earth station investments when they are 
built to connect to commercial satellites. The FCC has collaborated 
with NTIA over many years on opportunities to provide greater parity 
between Federal and analogous non-Federal earth stations, recognizing 
that reliable satellite communications are

[[Page 30877]]

vital for Federal agencies to accomplish their missions.
    112. Nearly eight years ago, the NPRM sought comment on this issue. 
Specifically, the NPRM sought comment on a proposal to add a co-primary 
Federal FSS or MSS allocation to several bands together with a footnote 
that limits primary Federal use of the bands to earth stations 
communicating with non-Federal space stations. Alternatively, and in 
lieu of adding the new Federal allocations, the NPRM also sought 
comment on a proposal to add a footnote to the Table of Allocations 
outlining certain circumstances under which Federal earth stations 
operating with non-Federal space stations would be entitled to 
interference protection. The bands under consideration at that time 
included a wide range of non-Federal FSS and MSS allocations. The NPRM 
also proposed that for either approach, Federal agencies could operate 
earth stations in motion (ESIMs) on an interference protected basis to 
the same extent as non-Federal licensees. Under those proposals, 
Federal agencies would be expected to comply with all of the Part 25 
rules pertaining to ESIMs and with the footnotes to the Allocation 
Table regarding ESIMs.
    113. In the NPRM, the Commission noted that reliable access to 
spectrum for commercial launch operations and for federal earth 
stations were ``two separate, but closely related portions of the 
commercial space sector.'' Moreover, the National Space Policy has long 
recognized both of these issues as vital to continued progress in 
space. However, while the Commission advances its proposals regarding 
commercial launch operations in the Order, it notes that the spectrum 
landscape in non-Federal FSS and MSS allocations has changed 
significantly in the time since the NPRM was adopted. Our Spectrum 
Frontiers, 3.7 GHz Service, 6 GHz proceedings, among others, have 
altered the underlying assumptions about current and expected future 
uses of many of the frequency bands that were discussed in the NPRM and 
the subsequent record. Some of the bands under consideration in the 
NPRM may no longer be appropriate candidates for expanded Federal FSS 
or MSS use given recent changes in the FCC's licensing or technical 
rules for the band. Other bands, however, may support greater Federal 
use.
    114. The Commission recognizes again the need for greater parity 
and certainty in the protections granted to communications between 
commercial satellites and Federal users. However, the Commission must 
give careful consideration to the NPRM's proposals based on the current 
state of the commercial satellite marketplace. Accordingly, the 
Commission seeks to refresh the record with respect to the NPRM, which 
sought comment on expanded Federal use of the 4.0-4.2 GHz, 5.925-6.425 
GHz, 11.7-12.2 GHz, 13.75-14.5 GHz, 18.3-19.3 GHz, 19.7-20.2 GHz, 
28.35-29.1 GHz, and 29.25-30 GHz frequency bands, among others. The 
Commission plans to move expeditiously in reviewing and acting on this 
new record.
    115. Some of the bands raised in the NPRM may no longer be suitable 
for expanded federal use. In the 3.7 GHz Report and Order the 
Commission established a new 3.7 GHz Service for terrestrial operations 
in the 3.7-3.98 GHz band and established a transition process for 
existing non-federal operators in the 3.7-4.2 GHz band. The transition 
process included protection criteria for existing registered incumbent 
operators that would continue to operate FSS earth stations in the 4.0-
4.2 GHz portion of the band after the transition. At that time, the 
Commission also found that it would not be in the public interest to 
allow non-federal operators to register new protected earth stations in 
the 4.0-4.2 GHz band. Since that time, the Commission completed Auction 
107 and announced winning bids totaling a record $81.1 billion in gross 
bids. Similarly, the Commission recently adopted rules to permit 
greater use by unlicensed devices of the 5.925-6.425 GHz band, which is 
the uplink band paired with the 3.7-4.2 GHz downlink band. The 
Commission has proposed to further expand unlicensed use of this band. 
Do commenters agree with the Commission's observation that, given the 
current status of these bands, they may not be suitable candidates for 
expanded federal use?
    116. In the NPRM, the Commission noted that terrestrial services 
heavily use several segments of the extended Ku-band, including the 
10.7-11.7 GHz and 12.7-13.25 GHz bands, and therefore the Commission, 
at the time, ``[did] not anticipate that the [extended Ku-] band will 
be heavily used by Federal agencies.'' Does this remain the case? Does 
the complexity of coordination between terrestrial and satellite users 
in these bands outweigh the benefits of expanding Federal users' access 
to these frequencies? Are there other frequency bands included in the 
NPRM that should be considered further? Which of the two alternative 
NPRM proposals for providing Federal access to these bands--adopting a 
Federal allocation or providing Federal earth stations interference 
protection through a footnote--is preferable? Are any additional 
modifications required to either set of proposals with respect to any 
relevant frequency bands, including whether to include a secondary 
allocation instead of a co-primary allocation or provide some other 
means of providing interference protection to Federal earth stations, 
communicating with non-Federal satellites? What process should the 
Commission, NTIA, and Federal agencies follow when coordinating Federal 
earth stations in the relevant bands to receive protection? Should the 
fact that the Commission has licensed non-geostationary satellite 
systems with large numbers of satellites in some of these bands since 
the NPRM was issued impact our decision? Is there a need for the 
Commission to address Federal access to satellite bands where its rules 
permit blanket licensing of earth stations, such as the Ku-band and Ka-
band, as blanket licensing permits Federal agencies to access 
commercial satellite systems on what effectively amounts to an equal 
basis with Commission licensees? Finally, to the extent that certain 
parties may be concerned about how such proposals, if implemented, 
might inhibit future repurposing of these bands for other non-federal 
services, the Commission seeks comment on those concerns and ways to 
address them.
    117. Federal Space Stations in the 399.9-400.05 MHz MSS Band. 
Currently, U.S. Table footnote US319 prevents Federal space stations 
from operating in the 399.9-400.05 MHz band even though there is a 
primary Federal MSS allocation for this band. At the request of NTIA, 
the NPRM proposed to permit Federal space stations (i.e., satellites) 
to operate in this band. The Commission takes this opportunity to 
invite further comment on the NPRM's proposal to modify footnote US319 
to permit Federal space stations to operate in the 399.9-400.05 MHz 
band.
    118. NTIA made this request to allow the 399.9-400.05 MHz band be 
used for a new satellite system that will assume some of the traffic 
currently handled by the Argos satellite system. Argos is a satellite 
system that was established by the French Space Agency, NASA, and the 
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Argos is used 
for a large number of applications, such as monitoring the oceans at 
thousands of fixed and drifting buoys, tracking the movements of 
wildlife, relaying information by humanitarian agencies from remote 
areas, monitoring water resources, and tracking the locations of ships. 
According to NTIA, establishing a new satellite system in the 399.9-

[[Page 30878]]

400.05 MHz band would allow non-environmental applications to be 
removed from the Argos system which will result in lower interference, 
higher capacity, and improved reliability and service for both the 
environmental applications remaining on Argos and the non-environmental 
applications moved to the new system.
    119. The Commission first made the 399.9-400.05 MHz band along with 
three other frequency bands available for MSS in 1993 to allow 
deployment of non-geosynchronous low Earth orbit (LEO) satellite 
systems, called ``Little LEO'' systems, to provide non-voice services 
such as data messaging and position determination. Although a Little 
LEO system had been deployed in other nearby frequency bands, at the 
time that the NPRM was adopted in 2013 no MSS applicants had requested 
access to the band. In 2019, the Commission's International Bureau 
initiated a processing round for non-voice non-geostationary systems in 
this band as well as the 400.15-401 MHz band. Five applications were 
included in this processing round. The Commission's International 
Bureau has granted market access for the 399.9-400.05 MHz band to two 
of these applicants while the other applications remain pending.
    120. The only commenter to address the 399.9-400.05 MHz band in 
response to the NPRM was Bigelow Aerospace. Bigelow Aerospace suggested 
that the 399.9-400.05 MHz band be allocated for emergency audio/data 
and backup communications links for communications between manned space 
stations or spacecraft and earth stations. Bigelow Aerospace made this 
suggestion as part of a discussion of the future bandwidth needs of 
crewed space stations and spacecraft that included suggestions that 
numerous other bands be used for different communication purposes. 
Bigelow Aerospace did not address the merits of NTIA's request to open 
up this band to Federal space stations.
    121. The Commission seeks additional comment on the NPRM's proposal 
to amend footnote US319 to permit Federal space stations in the 399.9-
400.05 MHz band. As indicated by the number of applications the 
Commission has received to use the band for NVNG MSS operations, the 
interest in use of the band has significantly changed since the record 
was developed in response the NPRM. Considering these changes, the 
Commission seeks to update the record on this issue and on whether 
modifying footnote US319 to permit Federal space stations to operate in 
the 399.9-400.05 MHz band would serve the public interest. Allocating 
spectrum for a new satellite system to supplement Argos may further the 
reliable provision of important services. However, any Federal 
satellites in this band will need to coexist with the non-Federal 
systems to also be deployed in the band. The Commission seeks comment 
on how this spectrum band can be shared by Federal systems without 
causing harmful interference to non-Federal systems, including those in 
the adjacent bands, and if coordination between the relevant systems 
can resolve any potential interference issues.
    122. Future Needs of the Commercial Space Industry. In the Notice 
of Inquiry (NOI) accompanying the NPRM, the Commission launched an 
inquiry into the future spectrum requirements of the commercial space 
industry. The NOI sought comment broadly on what other spectrum needs 
may be important as the commercial space sector continues to develop, 
including the spectrum requirements for commercial spaceports, the 
communications needs for other portions of space missions after the 
launch, and the portions of the Commission's rules that may need to be 
amended to keep pace with this rapidly changing industry. Therefore, 
the Commission seeks further comment on these issues and any additional 
information, data, and proposals that might be relevant to determine 
current and future spectrum and communications needs of the commercial 
space industry to facilitate innovations and the sustainability of 
space exploration and development.

Procedural Matters

    123. Ex Parte Presentations. The proceeding shall be treated as a 
``permit-but-disclose'' proceeding in accordance with the Commission's 
ex parte rules. Persons making ex parte presentations must file a copy 
of any written presentation or a memorandum summarizing any oral 
presentation within two business days after the presentation (unless a 
different deadline applicable to the Sunshine period applies). Persons 
making oral ex parte presentations are reminded that memoranda 
summarizing the presentation must: (1) List all persons attending or 
otherwise participating in the meeting at which the ex parte 
presentation was made, and (2) summarize all data presented and 
arguments made during the presentation. If the presentation consisted 
in whole or in part of the presentation of data or arguments already 
reflected in the presenter's written comments, memoranda or other 
filings in the proceeding, the presenter may provide citations to such 
data or arguments in his or her prior comments, memoranda, or other 
filings (specifying the relevant page and/or paragraph numbers where 
such data or arguments can be found) in lieu of summarizing them in the 
memorandum. Documents shown or given to Commission staff during ex 
parte meetings are deemed to be written ex parte presentations and must 
be filed consistent with rule 1.1206(b). In proceedings governed by 
rule 1.49(f) or for which the Commission has made available a method of 
electronic filing, written ex parte presentations and memoranda 
summarizing oral ex parte presentations, and all attachments thereto, 
must be filed through the electronic comment filing system available 
for that proceeding, and must be filed in their native format (e.g., 
.doc, .xml, .ppt, searchable .pdf). Participants in this proceeding 
should familiarize themselves with the Commission's ex parte rules.
    124. Comment Period and Filing Procedures. Pursuant to Sec. Sec.  
1.415 and 1.419 of the Commission's rules, 47 CFR 1.415, 1.419, 
interested parties may file comments and reply comments on or before 
the dates indicated on the first page of this document. Comments may be 
filed using the Commission's Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS). 
See Electronic Filing of Documents in Rulemaking Proceedings, 63 FR 
24121 (1998).
     Electronic Filers: Comments may be filed electronically 
using the internet by accessing the ECFS: http://apps.fcc.gov/ecfs//.
     Paper Filers: Parties who choose to file by paper must 
file an original and one copy of each filing.
     Filings can be sent by commercial overnight courier, or by 
first-class or overnight U.S. Postal Service mail. All filings must be 
addressed to the Commission's Secretary, Office of the Secretary, 
Federal Communications Commission.
     Commercial overnight mail (other than U.S. Postal Service 
Express Mail and Priority Mail) must be sent to 9050 Junction Drive, 
Annapolis Junction, MD 20701.
     U.S. Postal Service first-class, Express, and Priority 
mail must be addressed to 45 L Street NE, Washington, DC 20554.
     Effective March 19, 2020, and until further notice, the 
Commission no longer accepts any hand or messenger delivered filings. 
This is a temporary measure taken to help protect the health and safety 
of individuals, and to mitigate the transmission of COVID-19.

[[Page 30879]]

See FCC Announces Closure of FCC Headquarters Open Window and Change in 
Hand-Delivery Policy, Public Notice, DA 20-304 (March 19, 2020), 
https://www.fcc.gov/document/fcc-closes-headquarters-open-window-and-changes-hand-delivery-policy.
     During the time the Commission's building is closed to the 
general public and until further notice, if more than one docket or 
rulemaking number appears in the caption of a proceeding, paper filers 
need not submit two additional copies for each additional docket or 
rulemaking number; an original and one copy are sufficient.
     After COVID-19 restrictions are lifted, the Commission has 
established that hand-carried documents are to be filed at the 
Commission's office located at 9050 Junction Drive, Annapolis Junction, 
MD 20701. This will be the only location where hand-carried paper 
filings for the Commission will be accepted.
    125. People with Disabilities. To request materials in accessible 
formats for people with disabilities (braille, large print, electronic 
files, audio format), send an email to [email protected] or call the 
Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau at 202-418-0530 (voice), 202-
418-0432 (tty).
    126. Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis. As required by the 
Regulatory Flexibility Act, the Commission has prepared an Initial 
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (IRFA) of the possible significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities of the 
proposals addressed in this Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. The IRFA is 
set forth in Appendix E of this Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. 
Written public comments are requested on the IRFA. These comments must 
be filed in accordance with the same filing deadlines for comments on 
the Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, and should have a separate 
and distinct heading designating them as responses to the IRFA. The 
Commission's Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau, Reference 
Information Center, will send a copy of this Further Notice of Proposed 
Rulemaking, including the IRFA, to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of 
the Small Business Administration in accordance with the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act.
    127. Paperwork Reduction Act Analysis. This Further Notice of 
Proposed Rulemaking contains proposed modified information collection 
requirements. The Commission, as part of its continuing effort to 
reduce paperwork burdens, invites the general public and the Office of 
Management and Budget to comment on the information collection 
requirements contained in this document, as required by the Paperwork 
Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104-13. In addition, pursuant to the 
Small Business Paperwork Relief Act of 2002, Public Law 107-198, see 44 
U.S.C. 3506(c)(4)), the Commission seeks specific comment on how it 
might further reduce the information collection burden for small 
business concerns with fewer than 25 employees.

Ordering Clauses

    128. Accordingly, It is ordered that, pursuant to sections 1, 2, 
4(i), 5(c), 301, 303(c), 303(f), and 303(r) of the Communications Act 
of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. 151, 152, 154(i), 155(c), 301, 303(c), 
303(f), and 303(r), and Sec.  1.411 of the Commission's rules, 47 CFR 
1.411, this Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking 
is hereby adopted.
    129. It is further ordered that the amendments of part 2 of the 
Commission's rules, as set forth in Appendix A of the Report and Order 
and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, are adopted, effective 
thirty (30) days after publication in the Federal Register.
    130. It is further ordered that the Commission's Consumer and 
Governmental Affairs Bureau, Reference Information Center, shall send a 
copy of this Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed 
Rulemaking, including the Final and Initial Regulatory Flexibility 
Analyses, to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business 
Administration.
    131. It is further ordered that the Commission shall send a copy of 
this Report and Order in a report to be sent to Congress and the 
Government Accountability Office pursuant to the Congressional Review 
Act, see 5 U.S.C. 801(a)(1)(A).

Federal Communications Commission.
Marlene Dortch,
Secretary.

List of Subjects

47 CFR Part 2

    Communications equipment, Radio, Telecommunications.

47 CFR Part 87

    Communications equipment, Radio.

47 CFR Part 90

    Communications equipment, Radio, Telecommunications.

Proposed Rules

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Federal 
Communications Commission proposes to amend 47 CFR parts 2, 87, and 90 
as follows:

PART 2--FREQUENCY ALLOCATIONS AND RADIO TREATY MATTERS; GENERAL 
RULES AND REGULATIONS

0
1. The authority citation for part 2 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 47 U.S.C. 154, 302a, 303, and 336, unless otherwise 
noted.

0
2. Section 2.106, the Table of Frequency Allocations, is amended by:
0
a. Revising pages 26, 28, 36, 37, 43, and 44; and
0
b. In the list of United States (US) Footnotes:
0
i. Adding footnote US68;
0
ii. Revising footnote US96;
0
iii. Adding footnote US121; and
0
iv. Revising footnote US319.
    The revisions and additions read as follows:


Sec.  2.106  Table of Frequency Allocations.

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BILLING CODE 6712-01-C
* * * * *

United States (US) Footnotes

* * * * *
    US68 The band 420-430 MHz is allocated to the aeronautical mobile 
service on a primary basis for non-Federal use. Non-Federal stations in 
the aeronautical mobile service shall be:
    (a) Restricted to use for pre-launch testing of launch vehicles and 
sending flight termination signals to launch vehicles during launches; 
and
    (b) Subject to coordination with NTIA prior to each launch.
* * * * *
    US96 The band 2200-2290 MHz is allocated to the space operation 
(space-to-Earth) and the mobile services on a secondary basis for non-
Federal use. Non-Federal stations in the space operation and mobile 
services shall be:
    (a) Restricted to use for pre-launch testing and space launch 
operations except as provided under US303; and
    (b) Subject to coordination with NTIA prior to each launch.
* * * * *
    US121 The band 5650-5925 MHz is allocated to the radiolocation 
service on a primary basis for non-Federal use. Non-Federal stations in 
the radiolocation service shall be:
    (a) Restricted to use for pre-launch testing and tracking launch 
vehicles; and
    (b) Subject to coordination with NTIA prior to each launch.
* * * * *
    US319 In the bands 137-138 MHz, 148-149.9 MHz, 149.9-150.05 MHz, 
400.15-401 MHz, 1610-1626.5 MHz, and 2483.5-2500 MHz, Federal stations 
in the mobile-satellite service shall be limited to earth stations 
operating with non-Federal space stations.
* * * * *

PART 87--AVIATION SERVICES

0
3. The authority citation for part 87 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 47 U.S.C. 154, 303 and 307(e), unless otherwise 
noted.

0
4. Add subpart U, consisting of Sec. Sec.  87.601 through 87.606, to 
read as follows:
Subpart U--Commercial Space Launch Stations
Sec.
87.601 Scope of service.
87.602 Supplemental eligibility.
87.603 Frequencies.

Technical Regulations Governing the Use of 420-430 MHz, 2025-2110 MHz, 
and 2200-2290 MHz Bands

87.604 Frequency coordination.
87.605 Emission masks.
87.606 Power limits.

Subpart U--Commercial Space Launch Stations


Sec.  87.601  Scope of service.

    Commercial space launch stations are restricted to the following 
uses:
    (a) 420-430 MHz band. The use of commercial space launch licenses 
in the 420-430 MHz band is restricted to the transmission of flight 
termination signals during pre-launch testing and launch operations.
    (b) 2025-2110 MHz band. The use of commercial space launch licenses 
in the 2025-2110 MHz band is restricted to telecommand uplink 
transmissions from the controllers on the ground to the launch vehicle.
    (c) 2200-2290 MHz band. The use of commercial space launch licenses 
in the 2200-2290 MHz band is restricted to the transmission of 
telemetry data from the launch vehicle to controllers on the ground.


Sec.  87.602  Supplemental eligibility.

    (a) The following entities are eligible for commercial space launch 
licenses:
    (1) An operator or manufacturer of commercial spacecraft or 
spacecraft components;
    (2) A parent corporation or its subsidiary if either corporation is 
an operator or manufacturer of spacecraft or spacecraft components; or
    (3) An educational institution or a person primarily engaged in the 
design, development, modification, and flight test evaluation of 
spacecraft or spacecraft components.
    (b) Each application must include a certification sufficient to 
establish the applicant's eligibility under the criteria in paragraph 
(a) of this section.


Sec.  87.603  Frequencies.

    Commercial space launch operations are conducted in the 420-430 
MHz, 2025-2110 MHz, and 2200-2290 MHz bands on a co-equal basis with 
U.S. Government stations. Frequencies in the 420-430 MHz, 2025-2110 
MHz, and 2200-2290 MHz bands are assigned for telemetry and telecommand 
operations of expendable and re-usable launch vehicles:
    (a) 420-430 MHz. Frequencies in the 420-430 MHz band are assigned 
on a shared basis for the transmission of flight termination signals 
during pre-launch testing and launch operations.
    (b) 2025-2110 MHz. Frequencies in the 2025-2110 MHz band are 
assigned on a shared basis for telecommand uplink transmissions from 
the controllers on the ground to the launch vehicle.
    (c) 2200-2290 MHz. Frequencies in the 2200-2290 MHz band are 
assigned on a shared basis for the transmission of telemetry data from 
the launch vehicle to controllers on the ground.

Technical Regulations Governing the Use of 420-430 MHz, 2025-2110 MHz, 
and 2200-2290 MHz Bands


Sec.  87.604  Frequency coordination.

    (a)(1) Each application for a new station license, renewal, or 
modification of an existing license concerning commercial space launch 
frequencies, except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, must 
be accompanied by a statement from a frequency advisory committee. The 
committee must comment on the frequencies requested or the proposed 
changes in the authorized station and the probable interference to 
existing stations. The committee must consider all stations operating 
on the frequencies requested or assigned within 320 km (200 mi) of the 
proposed area of operation and all prior coordinations and assignments 
on the proposed frequency(ies). The committee must also recommend 
frequencies resulting in the minimum interference. The committee must 
coordinate in writing all requests for frequencies or proposed 
operating changes with the responsible Government Area Frequency 
Coordinators listed in the NTIA ``Manual of Regulations and Procedures 
for Federal Radio Frequency Management.'' In addition, committee 
recommendations may include comments on other technical factors and may 
contain recommended restrictions which it believes should appear on the 
license.
    (2) The frequency advisory committee must be organized to represent 
all persons who are eligible for non-Government space launch stations. 
A statement of the organization service area and composition of the 
committee must be submitted to the Commission for approval. The 
functions of any advisory committee are purely advisory to the 
applicant and the Commission, and its recommendations are not binding 
upon either the applicant or the Commission.
    (b) These applications need not be accompanied by evidence of 
frequency coordination:
    (1) Any application for modification not involving change in 
frequency(ies), power, emission, antenna height, antenna location, or 
area of operation.
    (2) [Reserved]


Sec.  87.605  Emission masks.

    (a) 420-430 MHz. The mean power of any emission supplied to the 
antenna

[[Page 30887]]

transmission line, as compared with the mean power of the fundamental, 
in the 420-430 MHz band of the Commercial Space Launch Service must be 
in accordance with the following:
    (1) On any frequency removed from the assigned frequency by more 
than 75 percent, up to and including 150 percent, of the authorized 
bandwidth, at least 25 decibels attenuation;
    (2) On any frequency removed from the assigned frequency by more 
than 150 percent, up to and including 300 percent, of the authorized 
bandwidth, at least 35 decibels attenuation; and
    (3) On any frequency removed from the assigned frequency by more 
than 300 percent of the authorized bandwidth, two levels of attenuation 
depending on whether the transmitter operates with mean power of:
    (i) Less than 5 kilowatts; or
    (ii) 5 kilowatts or greater.
    (b) 2025-2110 MHz. For frequencies offset from the assigned 
frequency less than the 50 percent of the necessary bandwidth, no 
attenuation is required. At a frequency offset equal to 50 percent of 
the necessary bandwidth, an attenuation of at least 8 dB is required. 
Frequencies offset more than 50 percent of the necessary bandwidth 
shall be attenuated in accordance with a specified formula dependent on 
necessary bandwidth and frequency displaced from the center of the 
emission bandwidth.
    (c) 2200-2290 MHz. All spectral components larger than -[55 + 
10xlog(P)] dBc (i.e., larger than -25 dBm) at the transmitter output 
must be within the spectral mask calculated using the following 
equation:

M(f) = K + 90 log(R)-100 log [verbar]f-fc[verbar] Eqn. A-9

where

M(f) = power (dBc) at frequency f (MHz)
K = -20 for analog signals
K = -28 for binary signals
K = -61 for FQPSK-B, FQPSK-JR, SOQPSK-TG
K = -73 for ARTM CPM
fc = transmitter center frequency (MHz)
R = bit rate (Mbps) for digital signals or ([Delta]f +fmax)(MHz) for 
analog FM signals
M = number of states in modulating signal (m = 2 for binary signals, 
m = 4 for quaternary signals and analog signals)
f = peak deviation
fmax = maximum modulation frequency


Sec.  87.606  Power limits.

    (a) 420-430 MHz. The effective radiated power of a transmitter in 
the 420-430 MHz band of the Space Operation Service shall not exceed 
1000 Watts.
    (b) 2025-2110 MHz. The effective radiated power of a transmitter in 
the 2025-2110 MHz band of the Space Operation Service shall not (with 
limited exceptions) exceed the following limits:
    (i) +40 dBW in any 4 kHz band for u <=0[deg]
    (ii) +40+3u dBW in any 4 kHz band for 0[deg]< u <=5[deg]

where u is the angle of elevation of the horizon viewed from the center 
of radiation of the antenna of the earth station and measured in 
degrees as positive above the horizontal plane and negative below it.

    (c) 2200-2290 MHz. The effective radiated power of a transmitter in 
the 2200-2290 MHz band of the Space Operation Service shall not exceed 
25 Watts and the transmitter output power shall not exceed 25 Watts. In 
addition, the power flux-density at the Earth's surface produced by 
emissions from a transmitter operating after the first stage for all 
conditions and for all methods of modulation shall not exceed the 
following limits:

-154 dB(W/m\2\) in any 4 kHz for angles of arrival less than 5[deg] 
above the horizontal plane;
-154 + 0.5 ([delta]-5) dB(W/m\2\) in any 4 kHz for angles of arrival 
[delta] (degrees) between 5[deg] and 25[deg] above the horizontal 
plane;
-144 dB(W/m\2\) in any 4 kHz for angles of arrival between 25[deg] and 
90[deg] above the horizontal plane.

PART 90--PRIVATE LAND MOBILE RADIO SERVICES

0
5. The authority citation for part 90 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 47 U.S.C. 154(i), 161, 303(g), 303(r), 332(c)(7), 
1401-1473.

0
6. Section 90.103 is amended by adding:
0
a. Paragraph (a)(4);
0
b. An entry to the table in paragraph (b), under the center heading 
``Megahertz'' in numerical order, for ``5650 to 5925''; and
0
c. Paragraph (c)(31).
    The additions read as follows:


Sec.  90.103  Radiolocation Service.

* * * * *
    (a) * * *
    (4) An operator or manufacturer of commercial spacecraft or 
spacecraft components; a parent corporation or its subsidiary if either 
corporation is an operator or manufacturer of spacecraft or spacecraft 
components; or an educational institution or a person primarily engaged 
in the design, development, modification, and flight test evaluation of 
spacecraft or spacecraft components.
    (b) * * *

                  Radiolocation Service Frequency Table
------------------------------------------------------------------------
       Frequency or band           Class of station(s)      Limitation
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
                              * * * * * * *
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                Megahertz
------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
                              * * * * * * *
5650 to 5925...................  Radiolocation land or                31
                                  mobile.
 
                              * * * * * * *
------------------------------------------------------------------------

* * * * *
    (c) * * *
    (31) This frequency band is shared on a co-primary basis to 
Government Radiolocation Service. The use of commercial space launch 
licenses in the 5650-5925 MHz band is restricted to launch vehicle 
tracking operations with signals originating from the launch vehicle
* * * * *
[FR Doc. 2021-11063 Filed 6-9-21; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6712-01-P