Goto Section: 101.1 | 101.4 | Table of Contents

FCC 101.3
Revised as of September 1, 2021
Goto Year:2020 | 2022
  §  101.3   Definitions.

   As used in this part:

   24 GHz Service. A fixed point-to-point, point-to-multipoint, and
   multipoint-to-multipoint radio system in the 24.25-24.45 GHz band and
   in the 25.05-25.25 GHz band consisting of a fixed main (nodal) station
   and a number of fixed user terminals. This service may encompass any
   digital fixed service.

   Antenna power gain. The ratio of the maximum radiation intensity to
   that of an isotropic (omnidirectional) radiator in the far field of its
   main (forward direction) lobe.

   Antenna power input. The radio frequency peak or RMS power, as the case
   may be, supplied to the antenna from the antenna transmission line and
   its associated impedance matching network.

   Antenna structure. The antenna, its supporting structure and anything
   attached to it.

   Assigned frequency. The center of the frequency band assigned to a

   Assigned frequency bandwidth. The frequency band within which the
   emission of a station is authorized; the width of the band equals the
   necessary bandwidth plus twice the absolute value of the frequency

   Authorized bandwidth. The maximum bandwidth authorized to be used by a
   station as specified in the station license. (See § 2.202 of this

   Authorized frequency. The frequency, or frequency range, assigned to a
   station by the Commission and specified in the instrument of

   Authorized power. The maximum power a station is permitted to use. This
   power is specified by the Commission in the station's authorization.

   Automatic Transmitter Power Control (ATPC). ATPC is a feature of a
   digital microwave radio system that adjusts the transmitter output
   power. ATPC allows the transmitter to operate at less than maximum
   power for most of the time. In a radio employing ATPC, the transmit
   power is reduced during normal operation conditions. When the receiver
   detects a reduction in signal level, a control signal is sent to the
   far end transmitter, instructing it to increase the power output to
   compensate for the signal reduction. The power output is limited to the
   licensed (maximum) transmit power. Guidelines for use of ATPC are set
   forth in the TIA Telecommunications Systems Bulletin TSB 10,
   “Interference Criteria for Microwave Systems (TSB 10).”

   Bandwidth occupied by an emission. The band of frequencies comprising
   99 percent of the total radiated power extended to include any discrete
   frequency on which the power is at least 0.25 percent of the total
   radiated power.

   Bit rate. The rate of transmission of information in binary (two state)
   form in bits per unit time.

   Carrier. In a frequency stabilized system, the sinusoidal component of
   a modulated wave whose frequency is independent of the modulating wave;
   or the output of a transmitter when the modulating wave is made zero;
   or a wave generated at a point in the transmitting system and
   subsequently modulated by the signal; or a wave generated locally at
   the receiving terminal which when combined with the side bands in a
   suitable detector, produces the modulating wave.

   Carrier frequency. The output of a transmitter when the modulating wave
   is made zero.

   Central office. A landline termination center used for switching and
   interconnection of public message communication circuits.

   Common carrier fixed point-to-point microwave service. A common carrier
   public radio service rendered on microwave frequencies by fixed and
   temporary fixed stations between points that lie within the United
   States or between points to its possessions or to points in Canada or

   Communication common carrier. Any person engaged in rendering
   communication service for hire to the public.

   Contiguous United States. For the 3700-4200 MHz band, the contiguous
   United States consists of the contiguous 48 states and the District of
   Columbia as defined by Partial Economic Areas Nos. 1-41, 43-211,
   213-263, 265-297, 299-359, and 361-411, which includes areas within 12
   nautical miles of the U.S. Gulf coastline (see § 27.6(m) of this
   chapter). In this context, the rest of the United States includes the
   Honolulu, Anchorage, Kodiak, Fairbanks, Juneau, Puerto Rico,
   Guam-Northern Mariana Islands, U.S. Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and
   the Gulf of Mexico PEAs (Nos. 42, 212, 264, 298, 360, 412-416).

   Control point. An operating position at which an operator responsible
   for the operation of the transmitter is stationed and which is under
   the control and supervision of the licensee.

   Control station. A fixed station, the transmissions of which are used
   to control automatically the emissions or operations of a radio
   station, or a remote base station transmitter.

   Coordination area. The area associated with a station outside of which
   another station sharing the same or adjacent frequency band neither
   causes nor is subject to interfering emissions greater than a
   permissible level.

   Coordination contour. The line enclosing the coordination area.

   Coordination distance. The distance on a given azimuth from a station
   beyond which another station neither causes nor is subject to
   interfering emissions greater than a permissible level.

   Digital Electronic Message Nodal Station. A fixed point-to-multipoint
   radio station in a Digital Electronic Message Service providing two-way
   communication with Digital Electronic Message User Stations.

   Digital Electronic Message Service. A two-way end-to-end fixed radio
   service utilizing digital termination systems for the exchange of
   digital information in the frequency bands 10,550-10,680 MHz,
   18,820-18,920 MHz, and 19,160-19,260 MHz. This service may also make
   use of point-to-point microwave facilities, satellite facilities or
   other communications media to interconnect digital termination systems
   to comprise a network.

   Digital Electronic Message User Station. Any one of the fixed microwave
   radio stations located at users' premises, lying within the coverage
   area of a Digital Electronic Message Nodal Station, and providing
   two-way digital communications with the Digital Electronic Message
   Nodal Station.

   Digital modulation. The process by which some characteristic
   (frequency, phase, amplitude or combinations thereof) of a carrier
   frequency is varied in accordance with a digital signal, e.g., one
   consisting of coded pulses or states.

   Drop point. A term used in the point-to-point microwave radio service
   to designate a terminal point where service is rendered to a

   Earth station. A station located either on the Earth's surface or
   within the major portion of Earth's atmosphere and intended for

   (1) With one or more space stations; or

   (2) With one or more stations of the same kind by means of one or more
   reflecting satellites or other objects in space.

   Effective Radiated Power (ERP). The product of the power supplied to
   the antenna and its gain relative to a half-wave dipole in a given

   Equivalent Isotropically Radiated Power (EIRP). The product of the
   power supplied to the antenna and the antenna gain in a given direction
   relative to an isotropic antenna.

   Exchange. A unit of a communication company or companies for the
   administration of communication service in a specified area, which
   usually embraces a city, town, or village and its environs, and
   consisting of one or more central offices, together with the associated
   plant, used in furnishing communication service in that area.

   Exchange area. The geographic area included within the boundaries of an

   Fixed satellite earth station. An earth station intended to be used at
   a specified fixed point.

   Fixed relay station. A fixed station associated with one or more
   stations, established to receive radio signals directed to it and to
   retransmit them automatically on a fixed service frequency.

   Fixed service. A radio communications service between specified fixed

   Fixed station. A station in the fixed service.

   Frequency tolerance. The maximum permissible departure by the center
   frequency of the frequency band occupied by an emission from the
   assigned frequency or, by the characteristic frequency of an emission
   from the reference frequency.

   Note: The frequency tolerance is expressed as a percentage or in

   General communication. Two-way voice communication, through a base
   station, between:

   (1) A common carrier land mobile or airborne station and a landline
   telephone station connected to a public message landline telephone

   (2) Two common carrier land mobile stations;

   (3) Two common carrier airborne stations;

   (4) A common carrier land mobile station and a common carrier airborne

   Harmful interference. Interference that endangers the functioning of a
   radionavigation service or of other safety services or seriously
   degrades, obstructs or repeatedly interrupts a radiocommunication
   service operating in accordance with these regulations.

   Internodal link. A point-to-point communications link used to provide
   communications between nodal stations or to interconnect nodal stations
   to other communications media.

   Landing area. A landing area means any locality, either of land or
   water, including airports and intermediate landing fields, which is
   used, or approved for use for the landing and take-off of aircraft,
   whether or not facilities are provided for the shelter, servicing, or
   repair of aircraft, or for receiving or discharging passengers or

   Local Multipoint Distribution Service Backbone Link. A point-to-point
   radio service link in a Local Multipoint Distribution Service System
   that is used to interconnect Local Multipoint Distribution Service Hub
   Stations with each other or with the public switched telephone network.

   Local Multipoint Distribution Service Hub Station. A fixed
   point-to-point or point-to-multipoint radio station in a Local
   Multipoint Distribution Service System that provides one-way or two-way
   communication with Local Multipoint Distribution Service Subscriber

   Local Multipoint Distribution Service Subscriber Station. Any one of
   the fixed microwave radio stations located at users' premises, lying
   within the coverage area of a Local Multipoint Distribution Service Hub
   Station, capable of receiving one-way communications from or providing
   two-way communications with the Local Multipoint Distribution Service
   Hub Station.

   Local Multipoint Distribution Service System. A fixed point-to-point or
   point-to-multipoint radio system consisting of Local Multipoint
   Distribution Service Hub Stations and their associated Local Multipoint
   Distribution Service Subscriber Stations.

   Local television transmission service. A public radio communication
   service for the transmission of television material and related

   Long haul system. A microwave system licensed under this part in which
   the longest radio circuit of tandem radio paths exceeds 402 kilometers.

   Master station. A station in a multiple address radio system that
   controls, activates or interrogates four or more remote stations.
   Master stations performing such functions may also receive
   transmissions from remote stations.

   Message center. The point at which messages from members of the public
   are accepted by the carrier for transmission to the addressee.

   Microwave frequencies. As used in this part, this term refers to
   frequencies of 890 MHz and above.

   Microwave link. A link is defined as a simplex communications circuit
   between two points utilizing a single frequency/polarization
   assignment. A duplex communications circuit would require two links,
   one link in each direction.

   Miscellaneous common carriers. Communications common carriers that are
   not engaged in the business of providing either a public landline
   message telephone service or public message telegraph service.

   Mobile earth station. An earth station intended to be used while in
   motion or during halts at unspecified points.

   Mobile service. A radio communication service between mobile and land
   stations or between mobile stations.

   Mobile station. A station in the mobile service intended to be used
   while in motion or during halts at unspecified points.

   Multichannel Video Distribution and Data Service (MVDDS). A fixed
   microwave service licensed in the 12.2-12.7 GHz band that provides
   various wireless services. Mobile and aeronautical operations are

   Multiple address system (MAS). A point-to-multipoint or point-to-point
   radio communications system used for either one-way or two-way
   transmissions that operates in the 928/952/956 MHz, the 928/959 MHz or
   the 932/941 MHz bands in accordance with § 101.147.

   National Spatial Reference System. The National Spatial Reference
   System (NSRS) is the name given to all Geodetic Control information
   contained in the National Geodetic Survey (NGS) Data Base. This
   includes: A, B, First, Second, and Third Order horizontal and vertical
   control observed by NGS as well as data submitted by other agencies
   (i.e., USGS, BLM, States, Counties, Cities, and private surveying

   Necessary bandwidth. For a given class of emission, the width of the
   frequency band that is just sufficient to ensure the transmission of
   information at the rate and with the quality required under specified
   conditions. The necessary bandwidth may be calculated using the
   formulas in § 2.202 of this chapter.

   Nodal station. The central or controlling stations in a microwave radio
   system operating on point-to-multipoint or multipoint-to-multipoint
   frequencies with one or more user stations or internodal links.

   Occupied bandwidth. The width of a frequency bandwidth such that, below
   the lower and above the upper frequency limits, the mean powers emitted
   are each equal to a specified percentage, B/2 of the total mean power
   of a given emission. Unless otherwise specified by the CCIR for the
   appropriate class of emission, the value of B/2 should be taken as

   Note: The percentage of the total power outside the occupied bandwidth
   is represented by B.

   Operational fixed station. A private fixed station not open to public

   Passive repeater. A re-radiation device associated with a
   transmitting/receiving antenna system that re-directs intercepted
   radiofrequency energy. For example, it may consist of reflector(s) or
   back-to-back parabolic or horn antennas.

   Path length. The total distance of a path from the transmit to the
   receive antenna, inclusive of all passive repeaters, if any.

   Payload capacity. The bit rate available for transmission of data over
   a radiocommunication system, excluding overhead data generated by the

   Periscope antenna system. An antenna system which involves the use of a
   passive reflector to deflect radiation from or to a directional
   transmitting or receiving antenna which is oriented vertically or near

   Prior coordination. A bilateral process conducted prior to filing
   applications which includes the distribution of the technical
   parameters of a proposed radio system to potentially affected parties
   for their evaluation and timely response.

   Private carrier. An entity licensed in the private service and
   authorized to provide communications service to other private service
   eligibles on a commercial basis.

   Private line service. A service whereby facilities for communication
   between two or more designated points are set aside for the exclusive
   use or availability for use of a particular customer and authorized
   users during stated periods of time.

   Private operational fixed point-to-point microwave service. A private
   radio service rendered by fixed and temporary fixed stations on
   microwave frequencies for the exclusive use or availability for use of
   the licensee or other eligible entities for communication between two
   or more designated points. Service may be provided between points
   within the United States, points within United States possessions, or
   between the United States and points in Canada or Mexico.

   Public correspondence. Any telecommunication which the offices and
   stations must, by reason of their being at the disposal of the public,
   accept for transmission.

   Public message service. A service whereby facilities are offered to the
   public for communication between all points served by a carrier or by
   interconnected carriers on a non-exclusive message by message basis,
   contemplating a separate connection for each occasion of use.

   Radio station. A separate transmitter or a group of transmitters under
   simultaneous common control, including the accessory equipment required
   for carrying on a radiocommunication service.

   Radiocommunication. Telecommunication by means of radio waves.

   Rated power output. The maximum radio frequency power output capability
   (peak or average power) of a transmitter, under optimum conditions of
   adjustment and operation, specified by its manufacturer.

   Record communication. Any transmission of intelligence which is reduced
   to visual record form at the point of reception.

   Reference frequency. A frequency having a fixed and specified position
   with respect to the assigned frequency. The displacement of this
   frequency with respect to the assigned frequency has the same absolute
   value and sign that the displacement of the characteristic frequency
   has with respect to the centre of the frequency band occupied by the

   Relay station. A fixed station used for the reception and
   retransmission of the signals of another station or stations.

   Remote station. A fixed station in a multiple address radio system that
   transmits one-way to one or more central receive sites, controls a
   master station, or is controlled, activated or interrogated by, and may
   respond to, a master station.

   Repeater station. A fixed station established for the automatic
   retransmission of radiocommunications received from one or more mobile
   stations and directed to a specified location; for public mobile radio
   operations, a fixed station that automatically retransmits the mobile
   communications and/or transmitter information about the base station,
   along a fixed point-to-point link between the base station and the
   central station.

   Secondary operations. Radio communications which may not cause
   interference to operations authorized on a primary basis and which are
   not protected from interference from these primary operations.

   Short haul system. A microwave system licensed under this part in which
   the longest radio circuit of tandem radio paths does not exceed 402

   Signal booster. A device at a fixed location which automatically
   receives, amplifies, and retransmits on a one-way or two-way basis, the
   signals received from base, fixed, mobile, and portable stations, with
   no change in frequency or authorized bandwidth. A signal booster may be
   either narrowband (Class A), in which case the booster amplifies only
   those discrete frequencies intended to be retransmitted, or broadband
   (Class B), in which case all signals within the passband of the signal
   booster filter are amplified.

   Signaling communication. One-way communications from a base station to
   a mobile or fixed receiver, or to multi-point mobile or fixed receivers
   by audible or subaudible means, for the purpose of actuating a
   signaling device in the receiver(s) or communicating information to the
   receiver(s), whether or not the information is to be retained in record

   Standby transmitter. A transmitter installed and maintained for use in
   lieu of the main transmitter only during periods when the main
   transmitter is out of service for maintenance or repair.

   Symbol rate. Modulation rate in bauds. This rate may be higher than the
   transmitted bit rate as in the case of coded pulses or lower as in the
   case of multilevel transmission.

   Telegraphy. A form of telecommunication which is concerned in any
   process providing transmission and reproduction at a distance of
   documentary matter, such as written or printed matter or fixed images,
   or the reproduction at a distance of any kind of information in such a
   form. Unless otherwise specified, telegraphy means a form of
   telecommunication for the transmission of written matter by the use of
   signal code.

   Telemetering. The use of telecommunication for automatic indicating or
   recording measurements at a distance from the measuring instrument.

   Telephony. A form of telecommunication set up for the transmission of
   speech, or in some cases, other sounds.

   Television. A form of telecommunication for transmission of transient
   images of fixed or moving objects.

   Temporary fixed station. A station established in a non-permanent mode
   (temporary) at a specified location for a short period of time, ranging
   up to one year. Temporary-fixed operations are itinerant in nature, and
   are not to be confused with mobile-type operations.

   Universal Licensing System (ULS). The consolidated database,
   application filing system and processing system for all Wireless
   Telecommunications Services. The ULS offers Wireless Telecommunications
   Bureau (WTB) applicants and the general public electronic filing of all
   applications requests, and full public access to all WTB licensing

   User or subscriber station. The station(s) in a microwave radio system
   operating at the users' premises on point-to-multipoint or
   multipoint-to-multipoint frequencies and communicating with one or more
   nodal stations.

   Video entertainment material. The transmission of a video signal (e.g.
   United States Standard Monochrome or National Television Systems
   Committee 525-line television) and an associated audio signal which is
   designed primarily to amuse or entertain, such as movies and games.

   [ 61 FR 26677 , May 28, 1996, as amended at  61 FR 29693 , June 12, 1996;
    61 FR 31052 , June 19, 1996;  61 FR 44181 , Aug. 28, 1996;  62 FR 23163 ,
   Apr. 29, 1997;  63 FR 68981 , Dec. 14, 1998;  65 FR 17448 , Apr. 3, 2000;
    65 FR 38326 , June 20, 2000;  65 FR 59357 , Oct. 5, 2000;  67 FR 43037 ,
   June 26, 2002;  68 FR 4955 , Jan. 31, 2003;  77 FR 54432 , Sept. 5, 2012;
    85 FR 22889 , Apr. 23, 2020]


Subpart B—Applications and Licenses


General Filing Requirements


Goto Section: 101.1 | 101.4

Goto Year: 2020 | 2022
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