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Information on the operation of Wireless LAN and Related Systems in the 2 GHz and 5 GHz Bands

General User Radio Licences

Under the provisions of General User Licences, various uses of radio spectrum are exempt from individual licensing fees. General User Licence bands are commonly known as "spectrum public parks", "unlicensed bands", or "class licence bands". In many instances the nature of the technologies employed, or the short operating ranges involved, limits the potential for interference between different application sharing the same spectrum.

In recent times significant interest has developed in the provision of high-capacity data services in the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands, particularly in regard to the Internet. Terminology relating to such applications includes "RLANs", "Wi-Fi", "802.11", "Hotspots", and "WISPs". This document is intended as a guide to the regulatory provisions for such services under General User Licences. It does not, however, exempt any person from the requirement to fully comply with the Radiocommunications Act 1989, the Radiocommunications Act 2001, or any notices made under that Act and those regulations.

Frequency use is on a shared basis and is the Ministry does not accept liability under any circumstances for any loss or damage of any kind occasioned by the unavailability of frequencies, or interference to reception. Nevertheless, the Ministry recognises that coordination between users can minimise the risk of interference between services. The Ministry therefore encourages the establishment of local user groups or associations to coordinate installations, technologies, and systems for the equitable utilisation by all users of the available frequencies.

 

General User Radio Licence (GURL) Provisions:

Frequency Range

Power

Modulation

Restrictions

2.4 - 2.4835 GHz

1 watt peak eirp

any modulation

 

2.4 - 2.4835 GHz

4 watt peak eirp

frequency hopping or digital modulation only

 

5.15 - 5.25 GHz

200 mW peak eirp

any modulation

-indoor W-LAN only

5.25 - 5.35 GHz

200 mW peak

any modulation

-W-LAN only

5.725 - 5.875 GHz

1 watt peak eirp

any modulation

 

5.725 - 5.875 GHz

4 watt peak

frequency hopping or digital modulation only

 

5.725 - 5.825 GHz (refer to Note 1)

200 watt peak eirp with a max 1 watt peak transmitter power

digital modulation only

-Fixed Radio Link Devices (FRL) only

-Peak power spectral density must not exceed 17dBM/MHz

 

Frequency coordination

Frequency is on a shared basis and is the Ministry does not accept liability under any circumstances for any loss or damage of any kind occasioned by the unavailability of frequencies, or interference to reception. Nevertheless, the Ministry recognises that coordination between users can minimise the risk of interference between services. The Ministry therefore encourages the establishment of local user groups or associations to coordinate installations, technologies, and systems for the equitable utilisation by all users of the available frequencies.

 

Note 1: Additional provisions in regard to the Fixed Radio Link (FRL) GURL
  • Point-to-multipoint, omni-directional, and multiple co-located transmitters transmitting the same information are not permitted (ie. point-to-point applications only).
  • Power must not exceed that necessary to reasonably maintain communications.
  • Notwithstanding the provisions of the above condition regarding frequency coordination, the Ministry reserves the right to require and ensure that any transmission pursuant to the General User Radio Licence change frequency, reduce power, or cease operation, where reasonable evidence is provided to the Ministry of:
  1. harmful interference being caused to licensed services operating outside the range of frequencies specified in the licence; or
  2. intentional harmful interference being caused to licensed services operating within the range of frequencies specified in the licence.

 

Standards

There is a requirement to conform to the Radio Standards Notice. There are five possible Standards able to be used to show compliance for equipment in the 5.725 GHz to 5.875 GHz range:

  • AS/NZS 4268
  • AS/NZS 4771 (part of AS/NZS4268, to be removed from the Standards Notice in due course)
  • EN 300 440
  • FCC CFR Title 47: Part 15. 247
  • FCC CFR Title 47: Part 15.249


Depending on the parameters of your equipment, and in particular the choice of modulation systems for the communication protocol you wish to use, one or more of those Standards could be appropriate.

New Zealand imposes as few restrictions on usage within the specified bands as possible. The channelling restrictions on equipment in your band of interest are basically imposed only on Digital Modulation techniques, where a requirement of 500kHz minimum bandwidth at the -6dB points is imposed by AS/NZS 4771, AS/NZS 4268 and FCC 15.247. For frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum modulation, NZ doesn't require a minimum number of "different emission frequency centres", but Australia and USA require at least 75 in AS/NZS 4268 and FCC 15.247.

Check for current standards on the Radiocommunications (Radio Standards) Notice.
 

Last updated 8 November 2010