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Amateur Radio - Spectrum Use During the Period of the Commonwealth Games (23rd July to 3rd August 2014)

Ofcom intends to temporarily authorise use of four frequencies in the amateur 2 metre band between 144.0 and - 144.2 MHz to which Radio Amateurs have primary access for the purpose of supporting the Games. The authorisation will be time limited for the period from 23rd July to 4th August 2014 only.

The Commonwealth Games will place very high demands on the radio spectrum in locations where there is already significant use of the spectrum resource.

The UK and Scottish Governments have guaranteed that arrangements will be made to allocate the necessary radio frequencies for the organisation of the Games. Ofcom has worked closely with the UK and Scottish Governments and other spectrum users to meet the Games requirements with minimum disruption to other users.

Ofcom has identified a need to have short term access to certain segments within bands to which Radio Amateurs have primary access. Ofcom has been working with the Radio Society of Great Britain to ensure that Games requirements can be met in some of these bands, with the expectation of minimal disruption for Amateurs to continue use.

Ofcom intends to temporarily authorise use of certain segments of the amateur 2 metre band (144-146 MHz) to which Radio Amateurs have primary access for the purpose of supporting the Games.  The authorisation will be time limited for the period from 23rd July to 4th August 2014 only. 

There are four 25 kHz channels that have been identified in the 144-146 MHz Amateur band which Ofcom plans to assign to support the 2014 Commonwealth Games and their preparation; some use will also continue for a short time after the Games to support decommissioning of venues.

Usage of this spectrum by Games users will be geographically limited to an area centred on Glasgow, defined with a UK NGR of NS 585 650 and the surrounding areas covering a radius of 30 kilometres between 23rd July 2014 and 4th August 2014.  

Specific use of this spectrum will be limited to handheld equipment operating on a maximum of 5 Watts output.  The frequencies affected are:

  • 144.000 MHz (Centre frequency with a channel bandwidth of 25 kHz);
  • 144.025 MHz (Centre frequency with a channel bandwidth of 25 kHz);
  • 144.075 MHz (Centre frequency with a channel bandwidth of 25 kHz); and;
  • 144.100 MHz (Centre frequency with a channel bandwidth of 25 kHz).

Use of radio by Amateurs in the defined geographical area could cause interference to Games applications; it is also possible that higher power transmissions from outside this area could cause interference. Consequently, to avoid the risk of interference to Games applications, we request that Amateurs do not operate within the frequencies above in the areas defined and that Amateurs ensure that any signals that could be received in this area is negligible.

Individual Amateurs should assess if their transmission is likely to be received in the defined areas and if in any doubt please DON’T operate within the frequencies identified.

Ofcom would like to emphasise that use of Primary Amateur spectrum is only for the specified time period and does not constitute a change of usage.

Amateurs should be aware that radio spectrum and all devices that use radio spectrum will be carefully controlled at the venues. This means that the public, including Radio Amateurs, should not attempt to take any radio equipment (other than mobile phones, car key fobs etc) into any venue as they will be refused entry.

As stated previously, Ofcom know that the Amateur Radio community is keen to support the Games and would like to thank you for your co-operation during the period of high spectrum demand. 

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