(a) Operation under the provisions of this Section is limited to frequency hopping and digitally modulated intentional radiators that comply with the following provisions:
(1) Frequency hopping systems shall have hopping channel carrier frequencies separated by a minimum of 25 kHz or the 20 dB bandwidth of the hopping channel, whichever is greater. Alternatively, frequency hopping systems operating in the 2400-2483.5 MHz band may have hopping channel carrier frequencies that are separated by 25 kHz or two-thirds of the 20 dB bandwidth of the hopping channel, whichever is greater, provided the systems operate with an output power no greater than 125 mW. The system shall hop to channel frequencies that are selected at the system hopping rate from a pseudo randomly ordered list of hopping frequencies. Each frequency must be used equally on the average by each transmitter. The system receivers shall have input bandwidths that match the hopping channel bandwidths of their corresponding transmitters and shall shift frequencies in synchronization with the transmitted signals.
(i) For frequency hopping systems operating in the 902-928 MHz band: if the 20 dB bandwidth of the hopping channel is less than 250 kHz, the system shall use at least 50 hopping frequencies and the average time of occupancy on any frequency shall not be greater than 0.4 seconds within a 20 second period; if the 20 dB bandwidth of the hopping channel is 250 kHz or greater, the system shall use at least 25 hopping frequencies and the average time of occupancy on any frequency shall not be greater than 0.4 seconds within a 10 second period. The maximum allowed 20 dB bandwidth of the hopping channel is 500 kHz.
(ii) Frequency hopping systems operating in the 5725-5850 MHz band shall use at least 75 hopping frequencies. The maximum 20 dB bandwidth of the hopping channel is 1 MHz. The average time of occupancy on any frequency shall not be greater than 0.4 seconds within a 30 second period.
(iii) Frequency hopping systems in the 2400-2483.5 MHz band shall use at least 15 channels. The average time of occupancy on any channel shall not be greater than 0.4 seconds within a period of 0.4 seconds multiplied by the number of hopping channels employed. Frequency hopping systems may avoid or suppress transmissions on a particular hopping frequency provided that a minimum of 15 channels are used.
(2) Systems using digital modulation techniques may operate in the 902-928 MHz, 2400-2483.5 MHz, and 5725-5850 MHz bands. The minimum 6 dB bandwidth shall be at least 500 kHz.
(b) The maximum peak conducted output power of the intentional radiator shall not exceed the following:
(1) For frequency hopping systems operating in the 2400-2483.5 MHz band employing at least 75 non-overlapping hopping channels, and all frequency hopping systems in the 5725-5850 MHz band: 1 watt. For all other frequency hopping systems in the 2400-2483.5 MHz band: 0.125 watts.
(2) For frequency hopping systems operating in the 902-928 MHz band: 1 watt for systems employing at least 50 hopping channels; and, 0.25 watts for systems employing less than 50 hopping channels, but at least 25 hopping channels, as permitted under paragraph (a)(1)(i) of this section.
(3) For systems using digital modulation in the 902-928 MHz, 2400-2483.5 MHz, and 5725-5850 MHz bands: 1 Watt. As an alternative to a peak power measurement, compliance with the one Watt limit can be based on a measurement of the maximum conducted output power. Maximum Conducted Output Power is defined as the total transmit power delivered to all antennas and antenna elements averaged across all symbols in the signaling alphabet when the transmitter is operating at its maximum power control level. Power must be summed across all antennas and antenna elements. The average must not include any time intervals during which the transmitter is off or is transmitting at a reduced power level. If multiple modes of operation are possible (e.g., alternative modulation methods), the maximum conducted output power is the highest total transmit power occurring in any mode.
(4) The conducted output power limit specified in paragraph (b) of this section is based on the use of antennas with directional gains that do not exceed 6 dBi. Except as shown in paragraph (c) of this section, if transmitting antennas of directional gain greater than 6 dBi are used, the conducted output power from the intentional radiator shall be reduced below the stated values in paragraphs (b)(1), (b)(2), and (b)(3) of this section, as appropriate, by the amount in dB that the directional gain of the antenna exceeds 6 dBi.
(c) Operation with directional antenna gains greater than 6 dBi.
(1) Fixed point-to-point operation:
(i) Systems operating in the 2400-2483.5 MHz band that are used exclusively for fixed, point-to-point operations may employ transmitting antennas with directional gain greater than 6 dBi provided the maximum conducted output power of the intentional radiator is reduced by 1 dB for every 3 dB that the directional gain of the antenna exceeds 6 dBi.
(ii) Systems operating in the 5725-5850 MHz band that are used exclusively for fixed, point-to-point operations may employ transmitting antennas with directional gain greater than 6 dBi without any corresponding reduction in transmitter conducted output power.
(iii) Fixed, point-to-point operation, as used in paragraphs (c)(1)(i) and (c)(1)(ii) of this section, excludes the use of point-to-multipoint systems, omnidirectional applications, and multiple co-located intentional radiators transmitting the same information. The operator of the spread spectrum or digitally modulated intentional radiator or, if the equipment is professionally installed, the installer is responsible for ensuring that the system is used exclusively for fixed, point-to-point operations. The instruction manual furnished with the intentional radiator shall contain language in the installation instructions informing the operator and the installer of this responsibility.
(2) In addition to the provisions in paragraphs (b)(1), (b)(3), (b)(4) and (c)(1)(i) of this section, transmitters operating in the 2400-2483.5 MHz band that emit multiple directional beams, simultaneously or sequentially, for the purpose of directing signals to individual receivers or to groups of receivers provided the emissions comply with the following:
(i) Different information must be transmitted to each receiver.
(ii) If the transmitter employs an antenna system that emits multiple directional beams but does not do emit multiple directional beams simultaneously, the total output power conducted to the array or arrays that comprise the device, i.e., the sum of the power supplied to all antennas, antenna elements, staves, etc. and summed across all carriers or frequency channels, shall not exceed the limit specified in paragraph (b)(1) or (b)(3) of this section, as applicable. However, the total conducted output power shall be reduced by 1 dB below the specified limits for each 3 dB that the directional gain of the antenna/antenna array exceeds 6 dBi. The directional antenna gain shall be computed as follows:
(A) The directional gain shall be calculated as the sum of 10 log (number of array elements or staves) plus the directional gain of the element or stave having the highest gain.
(B) A lower value for the directional gain than that calculated in paragraph (c)(2)(ii)(A) of this section will be accepted if sufficient evidence is presented, e.g., due to shading of the array or coherence loss in the beamforming.
(iii) If a transmitter employs an antenna that operates simultaneously on multiple directional beams using the same or different frequency channels, the power supplied to each emission beam is subject to the power limit specified in paragraph (c)(2)(ii) of this section. If transmitted beams overlap, the power shall be reduced to ensure that their aggregate power does not exceed the limit specified in paragraph (c)(2)(ii) of this section. In addition, the aggregate power transmitted simultaneously on all beams shall not exceed the limit specified in paragraph (c)(2)(ii) of this section by more than 8 dB.
(iv) Transmitters that emit a single directional beam shall operate under the provisions of paragraph (c)(1) of this section.
(d) In any 100 kHz bandwidth outside the frequency band in which the spread spectrum or digitally modulated intentional radiator is operating, the radio frequency power that is produced by the intentional radiator shall be at least 20 dB below that in the 100 kHz bandwidth within the band that contains the highest level of the desired power, based on either an RF conducted or a radiated measurement, provided the transmitter demonstrates compliance with the peak conducted power limits. If the transmitter complies with the conducted power limits based on the use of RMS averaging over a time interval, as permitted under paragraph (b)(3) of this section, the attenuation required under this paragraph shall be 30 dB instead of 20 dB. Attenuation below the general limits specified in § 15.209(a) is not required. In addition, radiated emissions which fall in the restricted bands, as defined in § 15.205(a), must also comply with the radiated emission limits specified in § 15.209(a) (see § 15.205(c)).
(e) For digitally modulated systems, the power spectral density conducted from the intentional radiator to the antenna shall not be greater than 8 dBm in any 3 kHz band during any time interval of continuous transmission. This power spectral density shall be determined in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (b) of this section. The same method of determining the conducted output power shall be used to determine the power spectral density.
(f) For the purposes of this section, hybrid systems are those that employ a combination of both frequency hopping and digital modulation techniques. The frequency hopping operation of the hybrid system, with the direct sequence or digital modulation operation turned-off, shall have an average time of occupancy on any frequency not to exceed 0.4 seconds within a time period in seconds equal to the number of hopping frequencies employed multiplied by 0.4. The power spectral density conducted from the intentional radiator to the antenna due to the digital modulation operation of the hybrid system, with the frequency hopping operation turned off, shall not be greater than 8 dBm in any 3 kHz band during any time interval of continuous transmission.
The transition provisions found in § 15.37(h) will apply to hybrid devices beginning June 2, 2015.
(g) Frequency hopping spread spectrum systems are not required to employ all available hopping channels during each transmission. However, the system, consisting of both the transmitter and the receiver, must be designed to comply with all of the regulations in this section should the transmitter be presented with a continuous data (or information) stream. In addition, a system employing short transmission bursts must comply with the definition of a frequency hopping system and must distribute its transmissions over the minimum number of hopping channels specified in this section.
(h) The incorporation of intelligence within a frequency hopping spread spectrum system that permits the system to recognize other users within the spectrum band so that it individually and independently chooses and adapts its hopsets to avoid hopping on occupied channels is permitted. The coordination of frequency hopping systems in any other manner for the express purpose of avoiding the simultaneous occupancy of individual hopping frequencies by multiple transmitters is not permitted.
Spread spectrum systems are sharing these bands on a noninterference basis with systems supporting critical Government requirements that have been allocated the usage of these bands, secondary only to ISM equipment operated under the provisions of part 18 of this chapter. Many of these Government systems are airborne radiolocation systems that emit a high EIRP which can cause interference to other users. Also, investigations of the effect of spread spectrum interference to U. S. Government operations in the 902-928 MHz band may require a future decrease in the power limits allowed for spread spectrum operation.
(i) Radio frequency devices operating under the provisions of this part are subject to the radio frequency radiation exposure requirements specified in §§ 1.1307(b), 1.1310, 2.1091, and 2.1093 of this chapter, as appropriate. Applications for equipment authorization of mobile or portable devices operating under this section must contain a statement confirming compliance with these requirements. Technical information showing the basis for this statement must be submitted to the Commission upon request.
[54 FR 17714, Apr. 25, 1989, as amended at 55 FR 28762, July 13, 1990; 62 FR 26242, May 13, 1997; 65 FR 57561, Sept. 25, 2000; 67 FR 42734, June 25, 2002; 69 FR 54035, Sept. 7, 2004; 72 FR 5632, Feb. 7, 2007; 79 FR 24578, May 1, 2014; 85 FR 18149, Apr. 1, 2020]