View Full Version : FCC Threat to Radioastronomy

2004-Mar-21, 09:59 PM
"This web page contains files and links of information about BPL [Bandwidth-over-Power Lines] and related broadband technologies and how they may adversely affect Amateur Radio and other HF radio operation...also sometimes called Power-line Communications or PLC...uses the electrical distribution grid to deliver broadband internet access to homes and businesses using the distribution system and building electrical wiring as a conductor...Sharing studies between the radio astronomy telescopes and the power line communication systems in the HF regionsystem...it was recognized that it is quite difficult to share frequencies with the PLC systems and radio astronomy..."

2004-Mar-21, 11:44 PM
BPL is a four letter word to communications enthusiasts - all around!!! http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/images/smiles/icon_evil.gif

Thank you for apprising participants of this forum as to its threat to RA as well!!! http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/images/smiles/eusa_clap.gif

Very best regards
Dan Sarandon

Charlie in Dayton
2004-Mar-22, 06:54 AM
It's on the way...they just began this service down the pike in Cincinnati.

2004-Mar-22, 11:05 PM
That's probably one of the test sites; the FCC has yet to make an official ruling.

2004-Mar-23, 02:08 AM
Maybe now they'll finally have an excuse to put insulation around all the above-ground power lines in the country, and twist them into shielded pairs.

2004-Mar-23, 03:16 AM
That should solve the unemployment problem!

2004-Mar-27, 12:20 AM
26 Mar 2004
"..."It's important that we stay on the cutting edge of technological change, and one way to do so is to have a bold plan for broadband," he said. Bush did not elaborate on how he would accomplish the 2007 goal...Paul Glenchur, an analyst at Schwab Soundview Capital Markets in Washington:
"Given that you haven't seen this issue talked a lot about on the campaign trail, it's interesting that it's creeping in now," he said. "I don't know whether you can read much into it based on what you heard."
Hmmh...a "bold plan"...

2004-Mar-27, 03:21 AM
The FCC is very protective of radio astronomy.

I work on satcom links for... certain customers, and even we have to bow to radio astronomy requirements.

So I don't think some dotcom startup is going to have much luck.

2004-Mar-27, 03:54 AM
Hey, the worst nightmare of the Ham radio operators has also been noticed by the astronomical community! We should form a pact. 8)
Personally I think the best thing the FCC does is summarized by a little square of text on every single device that uses radio frequencies in this country-
This device complies with Part 15 of the FCC rules. Operation is subject to the following two conditions:
(1) This device may not cause harmful interference, and
(2) This device must accept any interference recieved, including interference that may cause undesired operation.
BPL gets an official exception to the first part. The entire idea behind it is in very remote areas (incidentally the areas where radio astronomy is done) it costs a lot of money to run cable lines. You already have power lines so why not use them?
It sounds fine and dandy, but I can't help but wonder. You are going to hamper emergency communications with this (because their frequencies will be swamped with noise) and alienate some amateur radio operators who will not be willing to go the extra mile to volunteer their time in an emergency. Now when it comes down to something life threatening what do you want, high speed Internet access or someone who can communicate effectively to save your life?
I think it's rather interesting that over in Japan they took one look at BPL and declared it illegal. Must have something to do with the fact that they have such a high concentration of Hams and astronomers over there!
Hope you guys are holding up alright over in Ohio, Charlie.

2004-Mar-27, 04:53 AM
Personally I think the best thing the FCC does is summarized by a little square of text...---Andromeda321
and don't forget how they rolled over for the media giants recently, allowing individual companies 35% market saturation. Then, when one of the companies realized it had 39%, the FCC went back and dotted their "i" to allow 39%. Now it's the energy/utility companies who stand to gain thru their powerlines, and they do seem to have a degree of influence with this administration, judging by my (California) utility bill.
Hope you're right, GalaxyTrio!

2004-Mar-27, 05:16 AM
Yep. Some of you guys know that I REALLY don't like the FCC much (did you know it is literally impossible to start an AM or FM station right now in this country? they don't issue new liscences). I think I'll keep tweaking my homebrew AM transmitter and see if I can actually get a signal further then a quarter mile...
The reason I like Part 15 is because it gives everyone an equal chance in the spectrum. I mean it would really save me a lot of trouble to have a transmitter that spews spurious signals all over the place but I'm not gonna do it cause it's not very fair to others. Let one person do it over others, however, and the one will hurt everyone else. Especially if the government says that company is legal in doing so and no one else is!

2004-Mar-27, 05:24 AM
What is the deal with 15.2, the 'must accept interference part?'

2004-Mar-27, 08:19 AM
From the horse's mouth:
"Federal Communications Commission FCC 04-29
1. By this action, we are proposing to amend Part 15 of our rules to adopt new requirements and measurement guidelines for a new type of carrier current system that provides access to broadband
services using electric utility companiesí power lines..."