The Japanese Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC) has formalised the introduction of Body SAR requirements in Japan from April 1, 2014 and will amend the radio equipment rules and regulations accordingly.
Currently, regulations cover radio equipment used near the ear, such as mobile phones. The new regulations will include radio equipment to be used in close proximity to the human body and are expected to be harmonised with IEC 62209-2.
FCC and Industry Canada SAR Test Exemption Threshold
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) introduced a new set of formulas for determining the SAR test exemption threshold. These replace the old 60/f formula and incorporate the device-to-user separation distance.
Customers sometimes send us devices where MPE Calculations are performed, but the device could actually qualify for SAR exemption due to the new procedures. To determine whether a device is exempt from SAR testing, the latest FCC SAR exclusion criteria are outlined in KDB 447498 D01v05 Clause 4.3.1.
Industry Canada has issued Notice 2013-DR0911, which will be part of the upcoming RSS-102 Issue 5 release. This provides new SAR exemption limits, which can now be applied as an alternative to the RSS-102 Issue 4 SAR exemption criteria.
For a test/usage distance of 5mm or less, the exemption limits for a separation distance of 5 mm can be applied to determine if a routine evaluation is required. This means that some devices which are low power devices (normally exempt if <20mW based on current RSS-102 Issue 4 rules) may fall within scope of SAR testing dependent upon the output power if greater than 1mW at 5GHz or 4mW at 2.4GHz.
FCC WiFi Channels Notice
The FCC is addressing a software configuration issue relating to Wi-Fi client devices which support operation on Channels 12 and 13 and has stated that:
“If a device is capable of transmitting on these channels, it must meet all of the emission requirements for that band, as specified in FCC Rule Part 15.247, otherwise the channels must be disabled. If the device uses passive scanning to determine if a master transmits on these channels, it must still be able to determine that the master is transmitting in a manner compliant with the rules. Since this is not a standard in Wi-Fi protocol, it is not acceptable to rely on a standard master device.”
TÜV SÜD’s research shows that many Wi-Fi client devices rely on 802.11 access points to ensure proper operation and some changes to these devices will therefore be required for them to operate in compliance with FCC requirements.
In recognition that it will take time for manufacturers to implement the changes, to both currently approved products and new devices, the FCC is permitting a transition period until March 31, 2014 to ensure that all device approvals are consistent with the requirements.
During the transition period, devices which rely on passive scanning may still be approved, but we would encourage manufacturers to implement the new revisions as quickly as possible.
Signal Boosters must meet new FCC requirements by April 30th 2014
The FCC have amended Parts 1, 2, 20, 22, 24, 27, and 90 of its rules to adopt new technical, operational, and registration requirements for signal boosters. The new rules created two classes of signal boosters – Consumer and Industrial – with distinct regulatory requirements. Consumer Signal Boosters are designed to be used “out of the box” by individuals to improve their wireless coverage within a limited area such as a home, car, boat, or recreational vehicle while Industrial Signal Boosters include a wide variety of devices that are designed for installation by licensees or qualified installers. These devices are typically designed to serve multiple users simultaneously and cover larger areas such as stadiums, airports, office buildings, hospitals, tunnels, and educational campuses.
The FCC had outlined a new regulatory framework for equipment certification for both Consumer and Industrial Signal Boosters in Report and Order FCC 13-21 in February 2013. The FCC would no longer accept applications for equipment certification of Consumer or Industrial Signal Boosters that do not comply with the new rules and will cease certification of devices which do not comply with their new rules.
All Consumer and Industrial Signal Boosters sold, marketed or distributed in the United States must comply with the new FCC requirements by April 30, 2014.