The FCC says it will reactivate its Equipment Authorization System (EAS), which had been unavailable since the FCC ran out of funds on January 3 because of the partial government shutdown that began a month ago. RF devices, including most Amateur Radio equipment, must be properly authorized before being marketed or imported into the US. The FCC Office of Engineering and Technology (OET) administers the equipment authorization program.
“After reviewing our statutory authority, the status of contract obligations, and our lapse in funding plan, we will be reactivating this system today,” the FCC said in a January 18 public notice. “Most radio transmitters are required to be certificated to ensure compliance with the Commission’s technical rules.”
Certification applications are reviewed and granted by private-sector Telecommunications Certification Bodies (TCBs), which must enter the application and grant of equipment certification into the EAS before the grant becomes effective.
“The reactivation of the EAS will enable the TCBs to grant equipment certifications, thereby allowing that equipment to be imported and marketed in the United States,” the FCC said. “While the EAS will be available to the public, no support will be provided by Commission staff.”
There are some exceptions. TCBs are required to consult with FCC staff before granting certification for certain products under a procedure called Pre-Approval Guidance (PAG). “This procedure generally involves products where the required tests are complex or break new ground,” the FCC said. “TCBs will continue to be unable to grant equipment certification for products subject to the pre-approval guidance procedure until the FCC resumes normal operations and staff is available for consultation.”
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