WRC-19 Day-9+10: Halfway there?

| November 10, 2019

Thursday and Friday saw the halfway point reached at WRC-19 but this has led to some agenda items being continued into the weekend ahead of key deadlines on Monday.

Satellites: One example, so far not mentioned, is a solution for Agenda Item 1.7 for tele-command spectrum for short duration small satellites (cubesats etc). A solution for this item should protect the amateur satellite service from being ‘mis-used’ by what are increasingly commercial applications. It is focusing on a 137MHz (down)/ 149MHz (up) option. However reaching agreement is proving really hard work with over a dozen drafting group sessions so far; and weekend overtime in use.

Meanwhile the amateur satellite service itself has also had to work to prevent the abrogation (deletion) of ITU-R Resolution 642 regarding its filing process. This dates back many years and had been barely used (as opposed to alternate routes), thus leading to it being proposed for the chopping block. IARU specialists successfully lobbied for ‘No Change’ now that processes have improved and increasing amateur satellite demand needs such flexibility and recognition.

HF: Meanwhile another old one, ITU-R Resolution 641 re the ceasing of HF Broadcasting in 7.0-7.1 MHz was put out to grass. It predates the full protection to amateur radio afforded by Primary status and the removal of broadcasting allocations in 7.0-7.2 MHz.

50 MHz: Regarding ongoing key topics, AI-1.1 for 50 MHz has seen the closure of its drafting group after ten sessions, but not the end of deliberations on it! Some helpful advice from the ITU staff led to a further revision of the various draft footnotes during an informal but large session of the upper Working Group 4C level on Friday. The matter is thus precariously poised, pending more formal consideration during the coming week.

Other relevant topics that are ongoing include AI-1.13 (mobile/IMT2020), AI-1.16 (Wi-Fi in 5725-5850 MHz), AI-1.15 >275 GHz. Editorial updates for the radio regulations included a formal amendment for Swaziland to use its new name of Eswatini.

Future Agenda Items have been set an ambitious target of readying the various proposals for early next week as well. Here by far the greatest concern is the item that seeks greater protection for navigation systems in 1240-1300 MHz (particularly Galileo) from secondary amateur use. Numerous other proposals are also under preparation including a few that may affect amateur allocations. All are receiving IARU attention.

The end of the week also saw Tim Ellam VE6SH concluding his time at WRC-19 and some further plenary activities – including items on space debris and the gender balance in ITU-R (18% of the delegates are female, but the aim is for even better).

The latest weekly IARU and CEPT reports also give an excellent overview:-


A diverse group of Middle Eastern delegates

Take-2! – a new group photo for the amateurs  – this time the full team

Category: Front Page News, GB2RS, WRC-19