ACMA RadiocommunicationsRadio Compliance, Wireless Approvals, Short Range Devices, LIPD, Class Licence, AS/NZS 4268, ACMA SRD 2014
Radio Compliance is legislated in Australia under the Radiocommunications Act 1992. It is mandatory for all intentional transmitters, transceivers and receivers to comply with the ACMA Radiocommunications (Compliance Labelling – Devices) Notice 2014 and applicable standards.
Radiocoms Compliance is a requirement of ACMA RCM.
Q: Why is radio compliance important?
A: To ensure that radio devices can operate reliably, without interfering with other radios and nearby electronic devices. This is critical for reliable emergency services communications.
The ACMA specify Radiocommunications standards covering UHF, VHF, CB, DECT, Paging, Satellite and Short Range Devices Technologies to name a few examples.
Most of these devices are ACMA Medium Risk where a valid test report to an applicable standard is required.
Short Range Devices
The most commonly applied standard for ACMA RCM is ACMA Short Range Devices Standard 2014. Under this Standard a Class Licence can be applied for applicable devices called LIPDS (Low Interference Potential Devices). The ACMA Standard refers to industry standard AS/NZS 4268.
Examples of common LIPD’s and SRD’s (Short Range Devices) include the following:
- Bluetooth and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) Transceivers (2.4GHz)
- Wi-Fi Transceivers (2.4GHz and 5GHz)
- LoRa (915MHz)
- RFID (13.56MHz)
- Garage door openers (433MHz)
- Zigbee Transceivers (2.4GHz)
- Sigfox Transceivers (915MHz)
SRD’s are Low Risk under ACMA RCM and holding a test report is not mandatory. The Radio Device must still comply hence the best way to ensure radio compliance is to hold a valid test report.
If the device is fitted with a Radio Module, the combination of the Module and Host must be compliant. The recommended solution is to have a Module test report assessed along with the Module installation.
Industry standard AS/NZS 4268 accepts valid CE or FCC test reports although the operating frequencies and power levels must be verified before radio compliance can be determined. Compliance must also be assessed for the combination of the radio module and the host device in the case of a stand-alone CE or FCC Radio Module report.
Example standards that can be used to verify radio compliance of short range devices:
EN 300 328 Wideband transmission systems; Data transmission equipment operating in the 2,4 GHz ISM band and using wide band modulation techniques
EN 300 220 Short Range Devices (SRD) operating in the frequency range 25 MHz to 1 000 MHz
EN 300 440 Short Range Devices (SRD); Radio equipment to be used in the 1 GHz to 40 GHz frequency range
EN 300 330 Short Range Devices (SRD); Radio equipment in the frequency range 9 kHz to 25 MHz and inductive loop systems in the frequency range 9 kHz to 30 MHz
EN 301 893 5 GHz RLAN
EN 303 413 Satellite Earth Stations and Systems (SES); Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) receivers; Radio equipment operating in the 1164 MHz to 1300 MHz and 1559 MHz to 1610 MHz frequency bands
FCC Part 15.247 Operation within the bands 902-928 MHz, 2400-2483.5 MHz, and 5725-5850 MHz
FCC Part 15.249 Operation within the bands 902-928 MHz, 2400-2483.5 MHz, 5725-5875 MHz, and 24.0-24.25 GHz
It is not mandatory to have reports to these Standards assessed however the ACMA recommends that they are checked by an expert if there is any doubt. Ultimately the Responsible Supplier must sign the ACMA DoC hence having a radio assessment completed by an expert is an economical investment for peace of mind and reduced risk.
HOT TIP: If integrating a Radio Module, ensure you select a model that is CE or FCC compliant/certified. Try to use an antenna specified in the manufacturers compliance documentation, don’t modify the hardware and do not exceed the maximum tested power level. Otherwise the device will have to be tested to AS/NZS 4268 in order to determine radio compliance.
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