Frequencies that used to be allocated to Differential GPS (DGPS) are now being used by government services like law enforcement and emergency services.

Under the new arrangements, several segments between 403 and 470 MHz have been identified for the harmonised government spectrum (HGS). HGS will be primarily used by state and territory governments for law enforcement, emergency services and public safety communications. Some segments in HGS were previously used by DGPS services, in particular Segment T (457.50625–459.9875 MHz) and Segment Y (467.50625–469.9875 MHz).

Through the ACMA field spectrum monitoring activities, they‘ve found a number of unlicensed DGPS services operating in Segment Y. As government services transition into the HGS, there is a risk that unlicensed DGPS equipment could interfere with these critical communications.

All non-government users operating DGPS equipment licensed to operate in a high- or medium-density area were required to transition out of the HGS by 31 December 2015. All non-government users operating DGPS equipment in low- or remote-density areas have until 31 December 2018 to relocate.  If you aren't sure which area you operate under, refer to the apparatus licence fee density maps.

Operating without a license, or causing interference to other services, means you could be fined or taken to court.

  • If you don’t hold an apparatus licence for a frequency programmed in your equipment, you should remove it immediately unless you have the written authorisation from a current apparatus licensee to use that frequency under a third-party arrangement. It is against the law to operate an unlicensed radiocommunications device.
  • If you hold an apparatus licence for the frequency programmed into your DGPS equipment or are operating under a third-party arrangement, make sure you understand the conditions of the licence and any transition requirements you must meet.
  • The 400 MHz implementation FAQ provides useful information on how to vary or surrender a licence.

When you rent or hire a piece of equipment from SITECH Construction Systems, the operator may already hold a licence, or if you don't, you have a maximum 4 weeks written permission from SITECH CS (current licensee) via a third party arrangement to use their licence.  Outside the 4 weeks you must purchase your own.  If you plan to be on the same site for longer than the 4 weeks, a 'site specific' licence is required rather than an area wide licence.  Which is best for you?  Area-wide or site-specific? Find out here.

What to know about licensing your DGPS

  • Operation of all DGPS equipment must be authorised by a relevant radiocommunications licence.
  • All of the licence conditions must be met, including the permitted operating frequency, bandwidth, allowable transmitting power, location and antenna details.
  • The licence issued will allow DGPS operation at one fixed site (site-specific operation) or within a larger geographic area (area-wide operation).

Not sure if you're operating your DGPS legally:

  • Call the AMCA on 1300 850 115
  • Speak with your authorised SITECH dealer - 1800 748 324
  • Get the facts at - acma.gov.au/400MHz