Alternate Spectrum for Broadcasting: 26100~26480 kHz
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This is spectrum adjacent to the 11 meter shortwave band. REC has in the past suggested combining this spectrum and the 11 meter shortwave band to create a single band of 80 channels.
Who uses it?
Domestic incumbent users: Broadcast auxiliary remote pickup (439), broadcast auxiliary low power (206) and maritime coast stations (20).
Foreign incumbent users: Unknown.
How do they use it?
ITU Region 2 allocation: 26100~26175 is allocated to maritime mobile and the rest of the band is allocated to fixed and mobile (except maritime mobile) on a co-primary basis. In addition, there is a recent allocation to the radiolocation service at 26200~26420 for the use of oceanographic radars in accordance with ITU Resolution 612 (Rev. WRC-12).
FCC allocations: 26100~26175 is allocated to maritime mobile and 26175~26480 is allocated to land mobile. Specifically, the FCC has allocations in Part 74 for Remote Pickup and Low Power Auxiliary.
Federal Government allocations: Government radiolocation at 26200~26420 (see ITU allocation). Radars running in this spectrum can not interfere with non-federal land mobile (e.g. remote pickup) stations.
Canada/Mexico allocations: In accordance with the ITU Region 2 allocation.
REC analysis and opinion for use as alternate spectrum
Since this spectrum is outside of the actual shortwave broadcast band, it would only be receivable with general coverage receivers and software defined radios that cover this spectrum. No DRM receiver has been specifically designed or prototyped for this band however DRM receivers with SDR technology could likely be programmed for this band.
Despite the low powers that would be used by hyperlocal stations, it would still be an International Bureau decision to determine if this spectrum would have to be reallocated as "Broadcasting", even as just a national footnote in the table of allotments.
While this spectrum has the same characteristics of the 11 meter shortwave band, there is much more loading of these channels with broadcast auxiliary compared with the spectrum below 26100. An inquiry would need to be done to determine how broadcasters are using this spectrum.
Unlike the occasional transmissions from remote pickups and the much lower power (1 watt) of the auxiliary transmitters allowed in this band, continious duty transmissions are likely to cause more interference, especially in the maritime mobile subband during peak sunspot cycles. This spectrum is currently too loaded to be considered for alternate spectrum at this time.