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    EMC and the USA A Quick Guide

    Authorities The Federal Communication Commission1 (FCC) is the authority responsible for overseeing the authorisation of equipment using the radio frequency (RF) spectrum in the USA (this covers both intentional and unintentional transmitters). The Office of Engineering & Technology2 is responsible for advising the commission on such matters.

    Rules & regulations

    The FCC rules and regulations are laid out in Title 47 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR47)3. This title consists of many parts, only a few of which are applicable to electronic equipment. The parts listed below are those to which we commonly test. Devices may not be imported and/or marketed until they have shown compliance with the technical standards which have been specified by the Commission.

    Part 2 - Frequency Allocations and Radio Treaty Matters; General Rules and Regulations Part 15 - Radio Frequency Devices
    Part 18 - Industrial, Scientific and Medical Devices

    Routes of compliance explained3/4

    The manufacturer is able to make measurements or take the necessary steps to ensure the product complies with the appropriate technical standards. There is no requirement to submit a sample unit or data to the Commission to demonstrate compliance. The manufacturer can therefore test the product themselves or test at a facility of their choice. Details of such testing should be kept on file and only need be produced if requested. A full description of the test facilities must also be kept unless tests are performed at a site whose details are filed with the FCC (e.g. dB T echnology).

    􏰀 Certification (2.907)

    This is an authorisation procedure whereby the Commission or, more commonly, a Telecommunications Certification Body (TCB) issues an authorisation following the submission of test data by the applicant. For certification, measurements must be made at one of the following:

    ·  a site whose facilities are filed with the FCC (e.g. dB Technology)

    ·  a site accredited under NVLAP (see below)

    ·  Declaration of conformity (2.906)

    This is a process whereby a responsible party makes measurements or takes the necessary steps to ensure the product complies with the appropriate technical standards. There is no requirement to submit a sample unit or data to the Commission to demonstrate compliance unless specifically requested. A responsible party is a test house that has been accredited by the National Voluntary Laboratory Accreditation Program (NVLAP) or one that has been designated by the Commission under a Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA).