The reason I decided to do this presentation is because of a statement I once heard a long time ago. To ASSUME makes an ASS out of YOU and ME. The fact is that most people in Australia DO NOT KNOW the ‘LIPD Class Licence’ exists and yet they use devices authorised by it every day. Refer https://www.legislation.gov.au/Details/F2016C00432
The LIPD Class Licence only exists because all radiocommunications transmitters in Australia must be licensed. Unlike other forms of licensing where the spectrum user pays for a licence to use some radio spectrum, the LIPD Class Licence acts sort of like a public park. Everyone is entitled to use the bands listed in it, as long as they meet the rules and do not ‘interfere’ with one another. What it does is list many device types, frequencies and power levels which facilitate many of the daily things we take for granted.
If people don’t know about the LIPD Class Licence then how does it work?
Because supply of product into Australia is regulated.
The LIPD Class icence in association with the ACMA short-range devices standard (S162) act as a filter to indicate what product from around the world can be used in Australia. They indicate device type, permitted frequency, power level and any other necessary conditions to be met.
How do new items get added to the LIPD Class Licence and SRD standard?
The ACMA vets applications submitted for new products to be added and assesses their compatibility with Australian spectrum arrangements. Most items included in the LIPD Class Licence are not changed in design from their native overseas market. An example of one that does need change is Wi-Fi products in the 902 to 928 MHz USA band because in Australia up to 915 MHz we have a mobile telecommunications band. So devices here are restricted to the range 915 to 928 MHz.
How does the ACMA standards regime work?
NOW THAT PROCESS IS COMPLICATED because of the ‘wheels and processes of government legislation’, which involves having a
- Radiocommunications (RCM) labelling regime with STANDARDS under it.
- One of which is the ACMA short range devices (SRD) standard (Section 162 of the R/C Act)
- which mandates the Australian Standard AS/NZS 4268 and now ALSO the LIPD Class Licence.
- Then under AS/NZS 4268 and the LIPD Class Licence items can also refer to ETSI, standards, FCC, etc, plus any local requirements (e.g. reduced frequency band or limits on usage).
What does a supplier have to do?
- Assure product compliance with the radiocommunications ‘standard’, LIPD Class.
- Make a product declaration and maintain a compliance folder.
- Get a supplier code, register for the RCM and label the product.
- Determine if the product needs to comply with other regimes (such as telecommunications, EMC, EMR & electrical).
- Keep track of changes to the LIPD Class Licence and associated ‘standard(s)’.
Noel Higgins – Radio Communications Consultant, Analyse Solve & Test Pty Ltd