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Earth Stations on Aircraft (AES), Vessels (ESV) and Mobile Platforms (ESOMPS)

Earth Stations on Aircraft (AES)

Earth Stations on Aircraft (AES) are mobile earth stations in the Aeronautical Mobile-Satellite Service located on board aircraft and operate in the secondary MSS frequency allocations at 14 GHz. These stations are intended to provide non-safety related data communication services and will be authorised for the installation and operation by the national regulatory authority and/or civil aviation authority in the country where the aircraft are registered.

Operation of AES without individual authorisation from each of the CEPT administrations is essential for the provision of an uninterrupted service to users whilst aircraft crosses borders of various countries, as well as in reducing the regulatory burden.
 
The ECC has developed a process of AES authorisation which takes into account the requirements of both CEPT administrations and AES operators, and the international obligations defined in the ITU Radio Regulations.  This process is put into place through ECC Decision (05)11 "on the free circulation and use of AES".
 
According to this Decision administrations should make the national information on AES operation (terms of AES operation when the aircraft is on the ground, any additional limitations on the operation of AES at low altitudes and need for frequency authorisation) available to operators through the ECO information services. On the other hand, AES operators are also required to register their networks with the ECO and to provide through the ECO information services certain technical and operational data about their networks.
 
Information about AES operators’ data is available in the ECC Documentation Database www.ecodocdb.dk (corresponding ZIP files can be downloaded directly from the ECC Decision’s (05)11 area in the database).
 
In return for complying with the requirements of the said ECC Decision, AES are granted free circulation and use, and AES operators are exempted from the requirement to obtain additional authorisations from each of the overflown CEPT administrations which have implemented ECC Decision (05)11.
 
It is important to note that use of AES requires authorization by the relevant national Administration and/or Civil Aviation Authority of the country where the aircraft is registered.
 
Please note that ECC Decisions are implemented by CEPT administrations on a voluntary basis. The current implementation status of ECC Decision (05)11 can be consulted via its implementation record (link to the implementation record for ECC/DEC/(05)11). This record also contains references to country specific policy guidance on the use of AES for some CEPT countries which have not implemented the said Decision.

Earth Stations on Vessels (ESV)

For many years satellite communications for ships were limited to services provided by systems operating in the 1.5/1.6 GHz band.  Within the last decade, however, operators have installed terminals on ships which operate in the FSS bands at 4/6 GHz and at 11/12/14 GHz, and are intended to provide broadband data communication services.  These terminals are based on the design of conventional VSAT networks and are known within the ITU as Earth Stations on board Vessels (ESV). The ECC has developed a process of ESV authorisation which takes into account the requirements of both CEPT administrations and ESV operators, and the international obligations defined in the ITU Radio Regulations.  This process is put into place through ECC Decisions (05)09 and (05)10 "on the free circulation and use of ESV" addressing the 4/6 GHz and the 11/12/14 GHz bands respectively.

 

According to those Decisions administrations should make the information on the restricted or excluded areas for ESV operations and other requirements (e.g. need for an individual licence, terms of operation in the territorial sea and internal waters etc.) available to operators through the ECO information services. From the other side, ESV operators are also required to register their networks with the ECO and to provide through the ECO information services certain technical and operational data about their networks.

Information about ESV operators’ data is available in the ECO Documentation Database www.ecodocdb.dk (corresponding ZIP files can be downloaded directly from the ECC Decisions’ (05)09 and (05)10 areas in the database).

In return for complying with the requirements of the above mentioned ECC Decisions, ESV are granted free circulation and use, and ESV operators are exempted from the requirement to obtain licences from CEPT administrations which have implemented those Decisions. However, some CEPT administrations may require ESV which are installed on ships registered in their country to be licensed.

Please note that ECC Decisions are implemented by CEPT administrations on a voluntary basis. The current implementation status of ECC Decisions (05)09 and (05)10 can be consulted via the corresponding implementation record (links to the implementation record for ECC/DEC/(05)09 and ECC/DEC/(05)10). These records also contain references to country specific policy guidance on the use of ESV for some CEPT countries which have not implemented the said Decisions. 

Earth Stations On Mobile Platforms (ESOMPS)

ECC Decision (13)01 on the harmonised use, free circulation and exemption from individual licensing of Earth Stations On Mobile Platforms (ESOMPs) within the frequency bands 17.3-20.2 GHz and 27.5-30.0 GHz has been approved by the ECC in March 2013.

ESOMPs operate in Fixed Satellite Service (FSS) networks and are terminals with small directional antennas for the provision of broadband communication services. The terminals may be mounted on aircraft, ships or land vehicles or may be transportable devices used in motion or at temporary halts. ESOMPs on aircraft and ships may operate in national airspace and waters, or may also operate in international airspace and international waters. ECC Decision (13)01 relates only to ESOMPs operating in geostationary satellite networks.

Administrations inform the ECO, through the ECO Frequency Information System (EFIS), whether frequencies within 28.8365-28.9485 GHz are designated for ESOMP operations, or not, within their territory. They also inform ECO of the necessity for ESOMPs operating on the Earth surface in the vicinity of airfields to be coordinated.

Any ESOMP operator intending to operate ESOMPs within the framework of ECC Decision (13)01 is required to submit to the ECO a declaration that their system complies with the requirements of this Decision and the information (with any subsequent changes) contained in Annex 4, Table 2 of the ECC Decision (13)01.

A presentation (October 2013) on ESOMPs is provided here for information.

Information about ESOMPs operator declarations notified to the ECO is available in the ECO Documentation Database www.ecodocdb.dk (corresponding ZIP files can be downloaded directly from the ECC Decision (13)01 area in the database).

ECO contact for AES, ESV and ESOMPS related enquiries and registrations: Thomas Weber, thomas.weber@eco.cept.org,
tel. +45 33 89 63 12

Updated: 08 October 2013, 15:58