W3BE'S BE Informed!
BASICS
 
Home1.0 W3BE Checklists1.1 RF Safety1.2 Antenna Structures1.3 Quiet Zones1.4 60 Meter Privileges1.5 Take A Paying Job?1.6 Hams At Sea1.7 Imported Radios1.8.0 Reciprocal Privileges1.8.1 For Canadians1.8.2 Reciprocal I.D.1.8.3 More Reciprocal Q&A1.8.4 Hear Something Say Something1.9 Third Party Communications1.10 Incentive Licensing1.11 GEPs and GAPs1.12 Hamslanguage1.13 Visiting Operators1.14 Terms in Part 971.15 Amateur Station?1.16 Licenses & Call Signs1.17 All About Spectrum1.18 Transmitter Stability1.19 Selling Over Ham Radio1.20 Still an Amateur?1.21 Use My Station?1.22 Digi-Standards1.23 No Secrets1.24 Where's My License?1.25 Spectrum Management1.26 A Little Bit Commercial1.27 What is CW?2.0 Ham Needs To Know2.1 VE System Management2.2 What A VE Does2.3 Remote Testing2.4 Get Your Pools Right2.8 GOTA Experience: License Qualifier?2.12 Former Hams2.13 The Hunt for Stereotype W2.14 VE's Universe2.15 More HF for Techs2.16 Can A VE Accept Pay2.17 VEC Supposed To Do2.18 Significance of license2.19 Enough Operator Classes?3.0 Smell Test3.1 Maintenance Monitoring3.2 International/domestic3.3 Excuses3.4 Heed The Rules!3.5 Regulatable3.6 No Broadcasting3.7 Station Records4.0 Which Call Sign?4.1 Self-assigned indicator4.2 Station ID4.3 ID Every 10 minutes4.5 Indicator Schedule4.6 Special Event 1 by 14.7 Non-Appended Indicator4.8 Club Station ID5.0 Alternatives To Exams5.1 VPoD Protocols5.3 Big Red Switch6.0 Constitution Go-By6.1 What Ia A Radio Club?6.2 School Radio Club6.3 Club Stations Control Op6.4 Radio Club Repeater Station7.0 EmComm7.2 RACES7.3 Commercial Communications7.11 Supposed To Be7.12 Emergency Responders & Part 978.0 Repeaters & Part 978.1 Auxiliary Stations & Part 978.2 Remote Control, Telecommand & Part 978.3 Frequency Coordination8.4 Automatic Control & Part 978.5 The Internet & Part 978.6 Beacons & Part 978.7 Automatic Control & Part 978.8 Frequency Coordination & Part 9710.0 Comments in RM-1170810.2 Deceased's Call Sign10.3 A New Era for Ham Radio10.4 New Era Q/A10.5 Four Operator Classes10.6 Novice ArtifactQUIZ

BE Informed No. 1.15

●▬ ▬     ●●●▬ ▬      ▬●●●    ●

What Is An

Amateur Station?

John B. Johnston W3BE

Q. What exactly is an amateur station?

A. In places where the FCC regulates our amateur service, there is SEC. 3. [47 USC 153](2) of the Communications Act. It is supposed to be the final authority. It says the term “amateur station” means a radio station operated by a duly authorized person interested in radio technique solely with a personal aim and without pecuniary interest.

   In Section 2.1(a) of the FCC rules, it says: Where a term or definition appears in this part of the Commission's Rules, it shall be the definitive term or definition and shall prevail throughout the Commission's Rules. For the term Amateur Station, it simply means A station in the amateur service. Then it goes on to define the term Amateur Service: A radiocommunication service for the purpose of self-training, intercommunication and technical investigations carried out by amateurs, that is, by duly authorized persons interested in radio technique solely with a personal aim and without pecuniary interest. The source of the definition is claimed to be the ITU Radio Regulations.

   Additionally, it defines the term Amateur-Satellite Service: A radiocommunication service using space stations on earth satellites for the same purposes as those of the amateur service.

   Section 2.1(c) defines the term station to mean: One or more transmitters or receivers or a combination of transmitters and receivers, including the accessory equipment, necessary at one location for carrying on a radiocommunication service, or the radio astronomy service. Note: Each station shall be classified by the service in which it operates permanently or temporarily.

   Finally, there is our Section 97.3(a)(5). It says the term Station as used in our Part 97 means A station in an amateur radio service consisting of the apparatus necessary for carrying on radio-communications.

Q. Does an amateur station’s apparatus also include all of its antennas?

A. Yes. All of the antennas necessary at one location for carrying on radio-communications are accessory apparatus. All of the station’s radiating and/or receiving elements, their supporting structures, and any appurtenances mounted thereon, necessary for carrying on radio-communications, constitutes the antenna structure. Read Section 17.2(a).

Q. Does the station licensee have to be the owner of all of the station apparatus?

A. No. The Section 97.103 station licensee must, however, have sufficient Section 97.5(a) physical control of the station apparatus necessary to carry out the his/her responsibilities for the proper operation of the station in accordance with the FCC rules.

Q. Is the control point a part of its associated amateur station?

A. Yes. Each Section 97.3(a)(5) amateur station must have at least one Section 97.109(a) control point.

Q. What exactly is the control point?

A. Section 97.3(a)(14) defines that to be the location at which the control operator function is performed. OTA14 proffers: The word “point” usually refers to a narrowly localized place having a precisely indicated position. In this context, the control operator must be situated such as to be able to exercise proper judgment while doing those things that the control operator does: view and interpret all indicators showing the status of the regulated transmitting parameters; manipulate appropriately the apparatus dials and switches controlling of these parameters; ensure that the message content of each transmission is appropriate for the amateur service; making certain that the channel is not already occupied before transmitting; etc.

Q. Does the control point always have to be co-located with the rest of the station apparatus?

A. Not while the station is being Section 97.213 remotely controlled. Any Section 97.5 amateur station may be Section 97.213 remotely controlled. In such instances, the Section 97.109 control point and the designated Section 97.105 control operator are located at some distance from the rest of the station apparatus.

Q. Does an amateur station’s control point also have to be situated at a place where the FCC regulates our amateur service?

A. One prevailing assumption seems to be that it does not for a remotely controlled FCC-licensed amateur station utilizing the Internet as its Section 97.213 wireline point-to-point control link. That theory, however, is not explicitly confirmed – or prohibited - in our rules. If it ever comes into question, a negative decision could be triggered by an unfortunate situation influencing our regulator’s judgment at the time.  

   Most of us probably prefer that our assumption be confirmed and codified before some over-imaginative high risk-taking ham becomes way too clever for our own good. For example, our homeland security authorities may not view favorably radio stations that are transmitting from places where the FCC regulates our amateur service being remotely controlled by foreigners at locations beyond our authorities’ jurisdiction.

Q. Does the station licensee have to be present at the station’s transmitting site whenever it is transmitting?

A. Not necessarily. All Section 97.5 station apparatus, however, should be under the physical control of the Section 97.103 station licensee before the station may transmit on any amateur service frequency from any place that is within 50 km of the Earth's surface and at a place where the amateur service is regulated by the FCC. But that obligation can oftentimes be satisfied even while the station licensee is absent from the station’s transmitting site.

Q. Does anyone have to be present at the station’s transmitting site whenever it is transmitting?

A. No, unless human presence is necessary to the Section 97. 103 station licensee maintaining physical control of the Section 97.5(a) station apparatus. The Section 97.105 control operator, moreover, must be at the station’s Section 97.109(a) control point. While the station is being Section 97.109(b) locally controlled, its Section 97.109(a) control point is supposed to be co-located with the other station apparatus at the transmitting site.  

Q. Can there be multiple amateur stations transmitting from the same location using the same call sign?

A. Yes. The rules, at least, do not place a numerical limit on the number of amateur stations at any one location all transmitting the same call sign in their Section 97.119 station identification announcement. There is, however, Section 97.103(a). It says “The station licensee is responsible for the proper operation of the station in accordance with the FCC Rules.” So, it is the Section 97.103 station licensee who must decide on how much responsibility he/she is willing to manage concurrently.   

Q. Can multiple amateur stations transmit simultaneously from the same location, or multiple locations, all with the same call sign?

A. Yes, provided all of the station apparatus is under the Section 97. 5(a) physical control of the Section 97.103 station licensee as exposed in the Section 97.119 station identification announcement.

   The Section 97.103 station licensee must also designate the Section 97.105 control operator of each station. That designation, therefore, could carry the stipulation that the designated Section 97.105 control operator will also carry out the Section 97.5 physical control duty on behalf of the Section 97.103 station licensee. The FCC, however, will presume that the Section 97.103 station licensee is also the designated Section 97.105 control operator, unless documentation to the contrary is in the station records.

●▬ ▬    ●●●▬ ▬     ▬●●●    ●

July 18, 2017

Supersedes all previous editions