About

Rule Part

47 C.F.R, Part 97


Radio Service Code(s)

  • HA - Amateur
  • HV - Amateur Vanity

The amateur and amateur-satellite services are for qualified persons of any age who are interested in radio technique solely with a personal aim and without pecuniary interest. These services present an opportunity for self-training, intercommunication, and technical investigations.

The amateur and amateur-satellite services are for qualified persons of any age who are interested in radio technique solely with a personal aim and without pecuniary interest. These services present an opportunity for self-training, intercommunication, and technical investigations. Twenty-seven small frequency bands throughout the spectrum are allocated to this service internationally. Some 1,300 digital, analog, pulse, and spread-spectrum emission types may be transmitted.

Millions of amateur operators in all areas of the world communicate with each other directly or through ad hoc relay systems and amateur-satellites. They exchange messages by voice, teleprinting, telegraphy, facsimile, and television. In areas where the FCC regulates the services, an amateur operator must have an FCC or Canadian license. FCC-issued Reciprocal Permit for Alien Amateur Licensee are no longer needed. Reciprocal operation in the U.S. is now authorized by Section 47 C.F.R. § 97.107.

All frequencies are shared. No frequency is assigned for the exclusive use of any amateur station. Station control operators cooperate in selecting transmitting channels to make the most effective use of the frequencies. They design, construct, modify, and repair their stations. The FCC equipment authorization program does not generally apply to amateur station transmitters.

Operator Class & Examinations

The FCC has issued six types of license operator class, each authorizing varying levels of privileges. The class for which each licensee is qualified is determined by the degree of skill and knowledge in operating a station that the licensee demonstrates during an examination to volunteer examiners (VEs) in his or her community.

Most new amateur operators start at the Technician Class and then advance to the General Class or Amateur Extra Class operator license. The VEs give examination credit for the license class currently held so that examinations required for that license need not be repeated. The VEs construct the written examinations from question pools that have been made public. Helpful study guides and training courses are widely available.

Licensing

Operation of an amateur station requires an amateur operator license grant from the FCC. Before receiving a license grant, you must pass an examination administered by a team of volunteer examiners (VEs) to determine your operator class.

License Grants & Exams

Operation of an amateur station requires an amateur operator license grant from the FCC. Before receiving a license grant, you must pass an examination administered by a team of volunteer examiners (VEs). The VEs determine the license operator class for which you are qualified through the testing of your skills and abilities in operating an amateur station. You can contact a VE team in your community to make arrangements for being administered the examination elements you desire. If you need assistance in finding a VE team in your area, contact a Volunteer Examiner Coordinator (VEC).

After you successfully complete the exam, the VEC collects your Form 605 document from your VE team and, after carefully screening it, forwards the information thereon to the FCC for processing, usually electronically. The VEC may also handle registering an examinee with the FCC. Your operating authority begins when your license grant information appears on the amateur service licensee database of the Universal Licensing System.

Common Filing Tasks

Amateur licensees can submit applications using the Universal Licensing System (ULS) or paper applications using Form 605 and Form 159. Common filing tasks include:

Releases

9/16/2016
PUBLIC NOTICE (DA 16-1048)
Amateur Service Operation in CEPT Countries
2/7/2011
PUBLIC NOTICE (DA 11-221)
Amateur service operation in CEPT countries
5/7/2010
NOTICE OF PROPOSED RULEMAKING (FCC 10-76)
Amendment of Parts 2 and 97 of the Commission's Rules to Facilitate Use by the Amateur Radio Service of the Allocation at 5 MHz. Proposed to Amend Parts 2 and 97 of Its Rules Relating to the Amateur Radio Service
10/27/2009
LETTER (DA 09-2302)
Kentucky Department of Military Affairs
Granted the Waiver Request.
9/10/2009
PUBLIC NOTICE (DA 09-2031)
Amateur Service Operation in CEPT Countries
2/8/2007
PUBLIC NOTICE (DA 07-610)
WTB Implements Restriction of One Request Per Vanity Call Sign
12/11/2006
HEARING DESIGNATION ORDER (DA 06-2487)
Re: Joseph W. Hartmann, Jr., Application for New License in the Amateur Radio Service
By this Hearing Designation Order, we commence a hearing proceeding before a Commission Adminstrative Law Judge (ALJ) to determine whether the application filed by Joseph Hartmann, Jr. for a new Amateur Radio Service license should be granted.
12/19/2005
PUBLIC NOTICE (DA 05-3224)
WTB Reminds Wireless Licensees in Areas Impacted by Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma of Procedures for Seeking Further Extensions of Regulatory Deadlines
10/8/2002
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER (DA 02-2475)
Modification and Clarification of Policies and Procedures Governing Siting and Maintenance of Amateur Radio Antennas and Support Structures; Amendment of Section 97.15
Dismissed the Petition for Reconsideration filed by W. Lee McVey
11/13/2002
REPORT AND ORDER (FCC 02-298)
Revisions to Broadcast Auxiliary Rules in Part 74 and Conforming Technical Rules for Broadcast Auxiliary Service, Cable Television Relay Service and Fixed Services in Parts 74, 78, and 101 of the Commission's Rules

Bureau/Office: 

Updated: 
Thursday, April 20, 2017