Background The World Broadcasting Unions International Media Connectivity Group (WBU-IMCG) Intentional Interference to Satellite Services Working Group (IISS) has drafted the following proposal for a WBU position on C-Band. In producing the proposed position below, the group referenced and updated the 2015 WBU-ISOG position on C-Band. Examples of the impact on broadcasters of interference to their C-Band downlinks were invaluable in industry defense of C-Band spectrum at ITU WRC-15.
WBU C-Band Position
WBU members welcome technological change and the benefits it brings to both audiences and broadcasters. At the same time, many tried and tested technologies continue to deliver reliable and efficient services for WBU members. Satellite services have long provided valuable broadcasting services and remain an essential part of often complex broadcast supply chains serving our audiences, both nationally and internationally, for public service and commercial broadcasters.
C-Band FSS downlink frequencies between 3,400-4,200 MHz, have been and are extensively used throughout the world by WBU members for Fixed Satellite Services (FSS) applications and will continue to be used for the foreseeable future, in particular above 3,600 MHz. Since FSS downlink sites receive extremely weak signals from satellites in geosynchronous orbit, they are particularly fragile and susceptible to interference. WBU members have experienced serious interference to services where this spectrum has been opened up to other users and, because few countries require these receive-only downlink sites to be licensed or registered, little recourse is available. The WBU encourages our members to register their downlink sites.
WBU members have been and will continue to be highly dependent upon the use of satellite services using C-Band spectrum to 100 of thousands of FSS downlink sites for contribution and distribution. C-Band allows the operation of reliable, efficient and cost effective global and regional contribution/distribution systems and is also ideally suited to delivering media services into rapidly developing regions of the world. The potential allocation of C-band FSS spectrum to Mobile Services will create chaos to the economics of broadcasting by satellite, potentially interrupting services to audiences around the world. Furthermore, C-Band is critical for satellite services in tropical regions as it suffers less from the attenuation effects of heavy rainfall than higher frequency bands.
WBU members therefore call on satellite service providers and government regulators to protect the availability of the upper part of the C-Band spectrum, where the band has been allocated to satellite services and is currently used to provide many broadcasting services, enabling broadcasters around the world to continue to provide vital broadcasting services to billions of people across the world.
1 WBU-IMCG was previously known as the WBU International Satellite Operations Group (WBU-ISOG).