Satellite Monitoring Facility
The FCC satellite monitoring facility located in Columbia, MD, was established in 1979 and is the agency’s only satellite monitoring facility. This location covers satellite communications over all of the U.S. and surrounding areas, with a primary mission to detect and resolve interference, both domestically and internationally. The Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau’s satellite monitoring facility provides support to the other bureaus of the FCC, U.S. licensees, and federal government agencies. The facility is also the United States’ registered space monitoring facility with International Telecommunications Union (ITU), through which it provides interference/signal analysis assistance to international partners.
The Purposeful Interference Response Team (PIRT) is an interagency organization chartered by the National Security Council to facilitate U.S. Government agencies, working with commercial owner/operators and our allies, to attribute and resolve satellite interference. The PIRT is comprised of seven core member agencies: Department of Defense, Department of State, Department of Commerce, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Transportation, Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and the Federal Communications Commission and several conditional member agencies: National Reconnaissance Office, National Security Agency, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, Central Intelligence Agency, National Air and Space Intelligence Center, Defense Intelligence Agency, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, and the Department of Justice. FCC is one of the founding members of the PIRT and actively supports efforts for the resolution of satellite interference both domestically and internationally.