Goto Section: 90.201 | 90.205 | Table of Contents

FCC 90.203
Revised as of October 20, 2020
Goto Year:2020 | 2022
  §  90.203   Certification required.

   (a) Except as specified in paragraphs (b) and (l) of this section, each
   transmitter utilized for operation under this part and each transmitter
   marketed as set forth in § 2.803 of this chapter must be of a type which
   has been certified for use under this part.

   (1) Effective October 16, 2002, except in the 1427-1432 MHz band, an
   equipment approval may no longer be obtained for in-hospital medical
   telemetry equipment operating under the provisions of this part. The
   requirements for obtaining an approval for medical telemetry equipment
   after this date are found in subpart H of part 95 of this chapter.

   (2) Any manufacturer of radio transmitting equipment (including signal
   boosters) to be used in these services may request certification for
   such equipment following the procedures set forth in subpart J of part
   2 of this chapter. Certification for an individual transmitter or
   signal booster also may be requested by an applicant for a station
   authorization by following the procedure set forth in part 2 of this
   chapter. Such equipment if approved will be individually enumerated on
   the station authorization.

   (b) Certification is not required for the following:

   (1) [Reserved]

   (2) Transmitters used for police zone and interzone stations authorized
   as of January 1, 1965.

   (3) Transmitting equipment used in the band 1427-1435 MHz.

   (4) Transmitters used in radiolocation stations in accordance with
   subpart F authorized prior to January 1, 1974, for public safety and
   land transportation applications (old parts 89 and 93).

   (5) Transmitters used in radiolocation stations in accordance with
   subpart F authorized for industrial applications (old part 91) prior to
   January 1, 1978.

   (6) [Reserved]

   (7) Transmitters imported and marketed prior to September 1, 1996 for
   use by LMS systems.

   (c) Radiolocation transmitters for use in public safety and land
   transportation applications marketed prior to January 1, 1974, must
   meet the applicable technical standards in this part, pursuant to
   § 2.803 of this chapter.

   (d) Radiolocation transmitters for use in public safety and land
   transportation applications marketed after January 1, 1974, must comply
   with the requirements of paragraph (a) of this section.

   (e) Except as provided in paragraph (g) of this section, transmitters
   designed to operate above 25 MHz shall not be certified for use under
   this part if the operator can program and transmit on frequencies,
   other than those programmed by the manufacturer, service or maintenance
   personnel, using the equipment's external operation controls.

   (f) Except as provided in paragraph (g) of this section, transmitters
   designed to operate above 25 MHz that have been approved prior to
   January 15, 1988, and that permit the operator, by using external
   controls, to program the transmitter's operating frequencies, shall not
   be manufactured in, or imported into the United States after March 15,
   1988. Marketing of these transmitters shall not be permitted after
   March 15, 1989.

   (g) Transmitters having frequency programming capability and that are
   designed to operate above 25 MHz are exempt from paragraphs (e) and (f)
   of this section if the design of such transmitters:

   (1) Is such that transmitters with external controls normally available
   to the operator must be internally modified to place the equipment in
   the programmable mode. Further, while in the programmable mode, the
   equipment shall not be capable of transmitting. The procedures for
   making the modification and altering the frequency program shall not be
   made available with the operating information normally supplied to the
   end user of the equipment; or

   (2) Requires the transmitter to be programmed for frequencies through
   controls normally inaccessible to the operator; or

   (3) Requires equipment to be programmed for frequencies through use of
   external devices or specifically programmed modules made available only
   to service/maintenance personnel; or

   (4) Requires equipment to be programmed through cloning (copying a
   program directly from another transmitter) using devices and procedures
   made available only to service/maintenance personnel.

   (h) The requirements of paragraphs (e), (f), and (g) of this section
   shall not apply if:

   (1) The equipment has been designed and manufactured specifically for
   aircraft use; and

   (2) The part 90 certification limits the use of the equipment to
   operations only under § 90.423.

   (i) Mobile/portable equipment capable of use in the 806-809/851-854 MHz
   band segment and submitted for certification thirty or more days after
   publication of a summary of the Report and Order, (FCC 16-48, released
   April 25, 2016) in PS Docket 13-209 in the Federal Register must have
   the capability to operate in the analog FM mode on the mutual aid
   channels designated in § 90.617(a)(1).

   (j) Except where otherwise specially provided for, transmitters
   operating on frequencies in the 150-174 MHz and 406-512 MHz bands must
   comply with the following:

   (1) Applications for certification of mobile and portable equipment
   designed to transmit voice on public safety frequencies in the 150-174
   MHz or 450-470 MHz band will be granted only if the mobile/portable
   equipment is capable of operating in the analog FM mode on the
   nationwide public safety interoperability channels in the 150-174 MHz
   band or 450-470 MHz band, as appropriate. (See § 90.20(c), (d)(80) of
   this part.)

   (2) Applications for certification received on or after February 14,
   1997 but before January 1, 2005 will only be granted for equipment with
   the following channel bandwidths:

   (i) 12.5 kHz or less for single bandwidth mode equipment or
   multi-bandwidth mode equipment with a maximum channel bandwidth of 12.5
   kHz;

   (ii) 25 kHz for multi-bandwidth mode equipment with a maximum channel
   bandwidth of 25 kHz if it is capable of operating on channels of 12.5
   kHz or less; and

   (iii) 25 kHz if the equipment meets the efficiency standard of
   paragraph (j)(3) of this section.

   (3) Applications for part 90 certification of transmitters designed to
   operate on frequencies in the 150.8-162.0125 MHz, 173.2-173.4 MHz,
   and/or 421-512 MHz bands, received on or after February 14, 1997 must
   include a certification that the equipment meets a spectrum efficiency
   standard of one voice channel per 12.5 kHz of channel bandwidth.
   Additionally, if the equipment is capable of transmitting data, has
   transmitter output power greater than 500 mW, and has a channel
   bandwidth of more than 6.25 kHz, the equipment must be capable of
   supporting a minimum data rate of 4800 bits per second per 6.25 kHz of
   channel bandwidth.

   (4) Applications for part 90 certification of transmitters designed to
   operate on frequencies in the 150.8-162.0125 MHz, 173.2-173.4 MHz,
   and/or 421-512 MHz bands, received on or after January 1, 2011, except
   for hand-held transmitters with an output power of two watts or less,
   will only be granted for equipment with the following channel
   bandwidths:

   (i) 6.25 kHz or less for single bandwidth mode equipment;

   (ii) 12.5 kHz for multi-bandwidth mode equipment with a maximum channel
   bandwidth of 12.5 kHz if it is capable of operating on channels of 6.25
   kHz or less;

   (iii) 25 kHz for multi-bandwidth mode equipment with a maximum channel
   bandwidth of 25 kHz if it is capable of operating on channels of 6.25
   kHz or less; and

   (iv) Up to 25 kHz if the equipment meets the efficiency standard of
   paragraph (j)(5) of this section.

   (5) Applications for part 90 certification of transmitters designed to
   operate on frequencies in the 150.8-162.0125 MHz, 173.2-173.4 MHz,
   and/or 421-512 MHz bands, received on or after January 1, 2011, must
   include a certification that the equipment meets a spectrum efficiency
   standard of one voice channel per 6.25 kHz of channel bandwidth.
   Additionally, if the equipment is capable of transmitting data, has
   transmitter output power greater than 500 mW, and has a channel
   bandwidth of more than 6.25 kHz, the equipment must be capable of
   supporting a minimum data rate of 4800 bits per second per 6.25 kHz of
   channel bandwidth.

   (6) Modification and permissive changes to certification grants.

   (i) The Commission's Equipment Authorization Division will not allow
   adding a multi-mode or narrowband operation capability to single
   bandwidth mode transmitters, except under the following conditions:

   (A) Transmitters that have the inherent capability for multi-mode or
   narrowband operation allowed in paragraphs (j)(2) and (j)(4) of this
   section, may have their grant of certification modified (reissued) upon
   demonstrating that the original unit complies with the technical
   requirements for operation; and

   (B) New FCC Identifiers will be required to identify equipment that
   needs to be modified to comply with the requirements of paragraphs
   (j)(2) and (j)(4) of this section.

   (ii) All other applications for modification or permissive changes will
   be subject to part 2 of this chapter.

   (7) Transmitters designed only for one-way paging operations may be
   certified with up to a 25 kHz bandwidth and are exempt from the
   spectrum efficiency requirements of paragraphs (j)(3) and (j)(5) of
   this section.

   (8) The Commission's Equipment Authorization Division may, on a case by
   case basis, grant certification to equipment with slower data rates
   than specified in paragraphs (j)(3) and (j)(5) of this section,
   provided that a technical analysis is submitted with the application
   which describes why the slower data rate will provide more spectral
   efficiency than the standard data rate.

   (9) Transmitters used for stolen vehicle recovery on 173.075 MHz must
   comply with the requirements of § 90.20(e)(6).

   (10) Except as provided in this paragraph, single-mode and multi-mode
   transmitters designed to operate in the 150-174 MHz and 421-512 MHz
   bands that operate with a maximum channel bandwidth greater than 12.5
   kHz shall not be manufactured in, or imported into, the United States
   after January 1, 2011, except as follows:

   (i) To the extent that the equipment meets the efficiency standard of
   paragraph (j)(3) of this section, or

   (ii) Where operation with a bandwidth greater than 12.5 kHz is
   specified elsewhere.

   (k) For transmitters operating on frequencies in the 220-222 MHz band,
   certification will only be granted for equipment with channel
   bandwidths up to 5 kHz, except that certification will be granted for
   equipment operating on 220-222 MHz band Channels 1 through 160
   (220.0025 through 220.7975/221.0025 through 221.7975), 171 through 180
   (220.8525 through 220.8975/221.8525 through 221.8975), and 186 through
   200 (220.9275 through 220.9975/221.9275 through 221.9975) with channel
   bandwidths greater than 5 kHz.

   (l) Ocean buoy and wildlife tracking transmitters operating in the band
   40.66-40.70 MHz or 216-220 MHz under the provisions of § 90.248 shall be
   authorized under Supplier's Declaration of Conformity pursuant to
   subpart J of part 2 of this chapter.

   Note 1 to paragraph (l): The verification procedure has been replaced
   by Supplier's Declaration of Conformity. Equipment previously
   authorized under subpart J of part 2 of this chapter may remain in use.
   See § 2.950 of this chapter.

   (m) Applications for part 90 certification of transmitters designed to
   operate in in 769-775 MHz and 799-805 MHz frequency bands will only be
   granted to transmitters meeting the modulation, spectrum usage
   efficiency and channel capability requirements listed in § § 90.535,
   90.547, and 90.548.

   (n) [Reserved]

   (o) Equipment certification for transmitters in the 3650-3700 MHz band.
   (1) Applications for all transmitters must describe the methodology
   used to meet the requirement that each transmitter employ a contention
   based protocol and indicate whether it is capable of avoiding
   co-frequency interference with devices using all other types of
   contention-based protocols (see § § 90.7, 90.1305 and 90.1321 of this
   part);

   (2) Applications for mobile transmitters must identify the base
   stations with which they are designed to communicate and describe how
   the requirement to positively receive and decode an enabling signal is
   incorporated (see § 90.1333 of this part); and

   (3) Applications for systems using advanced antenna technology must
   provide the algorithm used to reduce the equivalent isotropically
   radiated power (EIRP) to the maximum allowed in the event of
   overlapping beams (see § 90.1321 of this part).

   (4) Applications for fixed transmitters must include a description of
   the installation instructions and guidelines for RF safety exposure
   requirements that will be included with the transmitter. (See
   § 90.1335).

   (p) Certification requirements for signal boosters are set forth in
   § 90.219.

   [ 43 FR 54791 , Nov. 22, 1978;  44 FR 32219 , June 5, 1979]

   Editorial Note: For Federal Register citations affecting § 90.203, see
   the List of CFR Sections Affected, which appears in the Finding Aids
   section of the printed volume and at www.govinfo.gov.

   


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