National Radio Quiet Zone Rules

The dimensions of the area are almost rectangular, stretching 107.0 miles (172.2 km) across the northern boundary, 109.6 miles (176.4 km) across the southern boundary, and 120.9 miles (194.6 km) along the eastern and western boundaries. It includes all countries with latitudes between 37° 30′ 0.4″ N and 39° 15′ 0.4″ N and longitudes between 78° 29′ 59.0″ W and 80° 29′ 59.2″ W. Near-radio silence is a prerequisite for those who live near the city`s largest and most demanding resident, the Green Bank Observatory, home to the world`s largest fully steerable radio telescope. To protect sensitive equipment from interference, the federal government created the National Radio Quiet Zone in 1958, a 13,000-square-mile area near the Virginia state border. Cellular and Wi-Fi networks have spread across the country to support our growing reliance on smartphones and other portable devices with internet connectivity. But in Green Bank, West Virginia, radio transmissions are severely limited to protect the National Radio Astronomy Observatory`s Robert C. Byrd Green Bank telescope, “the world`s largest fully controllable radio telescope.” The telescope picks up radio waves from space, which are faint and therefore difficult to detect. (e) band 420-450 MHz. Applicants for pulse detection systems operating in the band 420-450 MHz along the coast of contaminated United States and Alaska and spread spectrum radiolocation systems operating in the 420-435 MHz sub-band in the contiguous United States and Alaska should not expect to be accommodated if their area of operation is in the following areas: The only radio stations that exist near the core are part of the Allegheny Mountain radio network. which maintains one AM station and several low-power FM transmitters.

Exceptions are usually determined on a case-by-case basis and public safety considerations are taken. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration remote alarm systems, emergency service repeaters and weather radio are permitted. with the exception of frequencies in the radio astronomical observation bands listed in the United States Frequency Assignments Table; in this case, the power densities given in Table 1 of Recommendation ITU-R RA.769 apply. A full list can be found here. This paragraph concerns areas where radiation must be limited in order to minimize possible effects on the operation of radio astronomy or other facilities that are highly sensitive to interference. In this paragraph, consent means the written consent of the quiet area, radio astronomy, research and reception facility. The areas concerned and the procedures required are as follows: The “radio industry” is an umbrella term for all undertakings or public service providers involved in the broadcasting of radio stations or ancillary services. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) created the Quiet Zone in 1958 to protect the Green Bank and Sugar Grove radio telescopes from radio interference. [15] Today, the Green Bank Observatory monitors the zone of tranquility. The Green Bank telescope is the largest fully controllable radio telescope in the world. John W. Poole/NPR Hide the caption The National Radio Quiet Zone (NRQZ) is a large area in the United States designated as a radio quiet zone, where radio transmissions are severely restricted by law to facilitate scientific research and military intelligence gathering.

About half of the area is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of west-central Virginia, while the other half is the Allegheny Mountains in east-central West Virginia. A small portion of the area is located at the southern end of the Maryland Panhandle. The National Radio Quiet Zone is an area of nearly 13,000 square miles in the mountainous eastern United States where radio transmissions are limited to scientific research and military intelligence. The tranquility has also given young people here a greater appreciation for fostering connections in real life, the great outdoors and intimacy. Even teens who can use Wi-Fi at home — in the quiet area but outside the 10-mile core — said they spend less time online than most people their age, and those who moved to the quiet area said they discovered a new sense of adventure. Zone 1, also known as the radio astronomy instrument zone, limits intentional emitters to those deemed essential, and unintentional transmitters must operate in accordance with recommendations ITU-R RA.769 for radio astronomical measurements. Gasoline vehicles are prohibited in the area because spark-ignition engines generate radio interference. All vehicles and equipment in the area must therefore be powered by diesel.

But at Green Bank, where restrictions are mandatory, the quiet area has created a temporal distortion in the mountainous region in many ways. Phone booths rise near barns and stand guard on country roads. Paper maps are still common. Here, people are less distracted by the technologies that dominate 21st century American life. 1. Licensees and applicants intending to construct and operate a new or modified station at a fixed location near Boulder County, Colorado, are asked to consider the need to protect the radio reception area of Table Mountain from interference before submitting an application. In order to prevent deterioration of the current level of environmental radio signals at the site, the Department of Commerce ensures that the field strength of all radiated signals (except reflected signals) received at this 1800-hectare site (near 40°07′49.9″ north latitude, 105°14′42.0″ west longitude) results from new allocations (other than mobile stations) or from the modification or relocation of Existing signals In the case of the United Kingdom, it is necessary to carry out a more detailed analysis of the results of the values indicated. In the following table: The Federal Communications Commission created the National Radio Quiet Zone in 1958 to protect the observatory`s sensitive radio telescopes from interference, and state law restricts transmissions within 10 miles of any radio astronomy facility. (The quiet zone also protects “radio reception facilities for the United States Navy at Sugar Grove, WV.”) Zones 1 and 2 are located on the grounds of the Green Bank Observatory. The entire property is designed as Zone 1, with the exception of small portions (e.g.

residential areas, visitor areas and laboratories) which are designed as Zone 2. Zone 1, also known as the radio astronomy instrument zone, limits intentional transmitters to those deemed essential. All unintentional transmitters shall be operated in accordance with Recommendations ITU-RRA.769 on protection criteria for radio astronomical measurements. Gasoline-powered vehicles are prohibited in Zone 1 because their spark-ignition engines generate significant radio interference, requiring all vehicles and equipment to be powered by diesel. [13] Zone 2, also known as the Observatory Building Zone, allows intentional heaters authorized by the National Radio Quiet Zone, but does not allow other radiators such as Wi-Fi, cordless phones, and other wireless devices. Certain types of unintentional heaters are allowed. Digital cameras are prohibited, although film photography is allowed. [14] The restrictions are annoying for some residents who want a better way to use wireless devices. But for nearly a decade, these limits have allowed Green Bank to attract “electrosensitive” residents who suffer from diseases they believe are caused by electromagnetic fields. The January issue of Washingtonian Magazine provides a detailed update on these new residents and how wireless restrictions affect those who have no objection to wireless technology. The article, titled “The City Without Wi-Fi,” also notes that the telescope facility could be shut down by 2017 due to a lack of funding, which could lead to the lifting of wireless restrictions. (2) If an application for authorization to operate a station is submitted to the FCC, the notice required by paragraph (a)(1) of this section may be given before or at the same time as the application.

The application shall indicate the date on which the notification referred to in point (a)(1) of this Section was made. Upon receipt of such requests, the FCC will allow 20 days to make comments or objections in response to the communications provided.