47 CFR § 25.122 - Applications for streamlined small space station authorization.

§ 25.122 Applications for streamlined small space station authorization.
Link to an amendment published at 85 FR 52452, Aug. 25, 2020.

(a) This section shall only apply to applicants for NGSO systems that are able to certify compliance with the certifications set forth in paragraph (c) of this section. For applicants seeking to be authorized under this section, a comprehensive proposal for Commission evaluation must be submitted for each space station in the proposed system on FCC Form 312, Main Form and Schedule S, as described in § 25.114(a) through (c), together with the certifications described in paragraph (c) of this section and the narrative requirements described in paragraph (d) of this section.

(b) Applications for NGSO systems may be filed under this section, provided that the total number of space stations requested in the application is ten or fewer.

(1) To the extent that space stations in the satellite system will be technically identical, the applicant may submit an application for blanket-licensed space stations.

(2) Where the space stations in the satellite system are not technically identical, the applicant must certify that each space station satisfies the criteria in paragraph (c) of this section, and submit technical information for each type of space station.

(c) Applicants filing for authorization under the streamlined procedure described in this section must include with their applications certifications that the following criteria will be met for all space stations to be operated under the license:

(1) The space station(s) will operate only in non-geostationary orbit;

(2) The total in-orbit lifetime for any individual space station will be six years or less;

(3) The space station(s):

(i) Will be deployed at an orbital altitude of 600 km or below; or

(ii) Will maintain a propulsion system and have the ability to make collision avoidance and deorbit maneuvers using propulsion;

(4) Each space station will be identifiable by a unique signal-based telemetry marker distinguishing it from other space stations or space objects;

(5) The space station(s) will release no operational debris;

(6) The space station operator has assessed and limited the probability of accidental explosions, including those resulting from the conversion of energy sources on board the space station(s) into energy that fragments the spacecraft;

(7) The probability of a collision between each space station and any other large object (10 centimeters or larger) during the orbital lifetime of the space station is 0.001 or less as calculated using current National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) software or other higher fidelity model;

(8) The space station(s) will be disposed of post-mission through atmospheric re-entry. The probability of human casualty from portions of the spacecraft surviving re-entry and reaching the surface of the Earth is zero as calculated using current NASA software or higher fidelity models;

(9) Operation of the space station(s) will be compatible with existing operations in the authorized frequency band(s). Operations will not materially constrain future space station entrants from using the authorized frequency band(s);

(10) The space station(s) can be commanded by command originating from the ground to immediately cease transmissions and the licensee will have the capability to eliminate harmful interference when required under the terms of the license or other applicable regulations;

(11) Each space station is 10 cm or larger in its smallest dimension; and

(12) Each space station will have a mass of 180 kg or less, including any propellant.

(d) The following information in narrative form shall be contained in each application:

(1) An overall description of system facilities, operations, and services and an explanation of how uplink frequency bands would be connected to downlink frequency bands;

(2) Public interest considerations in support of grant;

(3) A description of means by which requested spectrum could be shared with both current and future operators, (e.g., how ephemeris data will be shared, antenna design, earth station geographic locations) thereby not materially constraining other operations in the requested frequency band(s);

(4) For space stations with any means of maneuverability, including both active and passive means, a description of the design and operation of maneuverability and deorbit systems, and a description of the anticipated evolution over time of the orbit of the proposed satellite or satellites; and

(5) In any instances where spacecraft capable of having crew aboard will be located at or below the deployment orbital altitude of the space station seeking a license, a description of the design and operational strategies that will be used to avoid in-orbit collision with such crewed spacecraft shall be furnished at time of application. This narrative requirement will not apply to space stations that will operate beyond Earth's orbit.

(6) A list of the FCC file numbers or call signs for any known applications or Commission grants related to the proposed operations (e.g., experimental license grants, other space station or earth station applications or grants).

[85 FR 43734, July 20, 2020]

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