ACMA e-bulletin 29 July 2020

ACMA have sent the following email bulletin to all amateurs:

29 July 2020

Welcome to the amateur radio e-bulletin.

Our e-bulletins highlight the latest amateur service information and ACMA regulatory activities affecting amateur radio, including recent and upcoming public consultations. Changes in call sign policy

We’ve made some administrative changes that give amateurs more options and flexibility, and a more active role in self-managing call signs. The changes will facilitate access to a wider range of digital modes for foundation licensees, and provide a ‘call sign for life’ for all licensees by: allowing all amateurs to obtain a three-letter call sign removing the association between call sign suffixes and qualifications. Read more about call sign changes, including your options and what to do if you move.

RF exclusion zone calculator
To help you comply with your electromagnetic energy (EME) obligations, we’ve developed a new simple RF exclusion zone calculator for the far-field region of the antenna. This calculator uses the free-space transmission equation from the AS/NZS 2772.2 Standard and provides a maximum circular exclusion zone for a transmitting antenna.

Future arrangements for syllabus reviews
We’ve decided to revise the process for updating the amateur radio syllabus. This is because the Syllabus Review Panel established by the ACMA in November 2019 has been unable to reach consensus on the minor changes required to align the foundation syllabus with the amateur licensing framework. Find out more about syllabus review changes.

Amateur radio fact sheet
We’ve developed a fact sheet to help outline our role in regulating amateur radio, the role of the Australian Maritime College (AMC) in amateur qualifications and call signs, and to provide some general information about regulation for amateur radio.

Upcoming consultation: Review of non-assigned amateur and outpost licensing
We’re currently looking into the most appropriate licensing mechanisms and conditions for non-assigned amateur and outpost licences and will be asking for feedback. The upcoming consultation will examine our existing licensing options, and whether this approach is appropriate for the future, and will propose reforms to streamline and reduce regulatory, administrative, and financial burdens on licensees and the ACMA. Further information about the review is available in the draft Five-year spectrum outlook 2020–24. Please note that this consultation has been delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and we now expect to consult in Q4 2020. We’ll let you know when it commences.

Your questions answered
We often get questions about whether communicating with someone operating outside the conditions of the Amateur LCD is a breach of the LCD. The answer is: no. As long as you operate within the terms of the LCD, another person’s behaviour, such as using the wrong frequency band, cannot put you in breach of the LCD.

Useful links
Amateur radio on the ACMA website
Amateur radio operating procedures
Radiocommunications Licence Conditions (Amateur Licence) Determination 2015 (the Amateur LCD)
Amateur radio on the AMC website