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Spectrum Management In Sri Lanka
Introduction to Spectrum Management

Radio technologies use electromagnetic waves to send information in free space. Many different radio applications can be used at the same time by employing waves of different frequency.The radio spectrum is defined as that part of the electromagnetic spectrum at frequencies between 3 kHz and 300 GHz.

Radio frequency spectrum is one of country’s key natural resources of great economic value as a result of its direct application in telecommunications, broadcasting, military, and scientific research in addition to a range of other socioeconomic activities such as social services, law enforcement, education, healthcare, transportation, etc. As a result, many industries depend heavily on the efficient utilization of radio frequency spectrum.

Spectrum Management is the combination of administrative and technical procedures necessary to ensure the efficient operation of radio communication equipment and services without causing interference to other radio systems. The goal of spectrum management is to maximize spectrum efficiency and minimize interference.

Mandate of TRCSL

By virtue of Section 10(a) of the Sri Lanka Telecommunications Act, Telecommunications Regulatory Commission of Sri Lanka (TRCSL) is the sole lawful body in Sri Lanka to manage and control the use of the radio frequency spectrum and matters relating to the stationary satellite orbit and have the power where it deems necessary to withdraw or suspend its use or prohibit any such use of frequencies.

The Commission is also vested with authority under the Section 22 of the Act to issue licenses for the users of radio communication services, conserve the radio spectrum and enforce compliance with rules to minimize electro-magnetic disturbances produced by radio communications installations.

In TRCSL, the Spectrum Management Division is responsible for the efficient administration of the radio spectrum.
Spectrum Management Division performs following functions;
Allocating frequency bands in accordance with international Radio Regulations and the national priorities ;

Assigning frequencies through fair, equitable and transparent procedures;

Planning, coordinating, regulating and administering the use of the frequencies;
Establishing regulations, technical parameters and standards governing the use of radio spectrum and use of satellite orbit belongs to the country;
Defining technical standards for radio communication equipment;
Managing the spectrum in order to make adequate provision for various services based on their relative importance to country’s socio economic goals;
Licensing of users for the purpose of regulating the use of spectrum in order ensure minimum interference with other users;
Monitoring of radio spectrum;
Granting Type Approval for Radio and Telecommunications Terminal Equipment (RTTE);
Conducting licence conformity inspections of radio communication stations to ensure their operation is in accordance with the technical standards and parameters stipulated in the license;
Maintaining regional and international co-ordination and co-operation for the use of radio frequencies;
Maintaining information database on authorized radio systems such as frequencies, the locations, transmitting powers, call signs, etc, and notifying to the Radiocommunication Bureau of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) if there is possibility to cause interference to other countries;
Spectrum re-farming that systematically phase out ageing radio communication services in order to free up new spectrum space to accommodate emerging technologies and new services;
Verifying the compatibility and the interference-free use of authorized emissions, detecting and identifying the origin of the interferences and to resolve them;
Collecting licence fees payable for use of spectrum.
  Conducting Armature Radio and Global Maritime Distress Safety System (GMDSS) examinations.