Vol. 15, No. 4; August 2002

Japan's Government Concluded
It is not suitable to allow HF band for PLC

PLC, a shortened form of the word "Power Line Communications" that intends to implement high rate Internet data transmission on existing electrical power lines, is an extremely important issue for amateur radio as it occurs between 2 MHz - 30 MHz, and HF reception can be seriously disturbed by such radiation.

JARL has been deeply concerned about PLC, and firmly expressed strong opposition to the Ministry of Public Management, Home Affairs, Posts and Telecommunications (MPHPT.)

On April 30, 2002, the Ministry's study group on PLC held its first public hearing with JARL, Association of Radio Industries and Business, and others. At the meeting, the results of collaborated field tests, which were held in January, 2002, were reported. The tests included monitoring leakage of electric waves from power lines -- specifically in cases of providing Internet access via power lines to homes.

In this way, JARL actively cooperated with the group. Even more, at the group's request, JARL dispatched one of its directors, Mr. Masao Matsumoto, JA1AYC, to Germany to conduct research on the PLC situation in Europe.

As a result, MPHPT's study group officially announced in its fifth meeting on July 31 that it is too early to allow PLC between 2 MHz and 30 MHz due to hazardous effects on HF users. This news was reported by major newspapers including Yomiuri, Asahi and Mainichi, as well as the major financial daily, Nihon Keizai Shimbun.

JARL President, Mr. Shozo Hara, JA1AN, said "JARL is glad that the Ministry's study group on PLC concluded that it is not suitable to allow PLC between 2 MHz and 30 MHz. However, we need to keep in mind that the future course of environmental demonstrative tests, their direction and international standards planning need to be watched very carefully."

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The Japan Amateur Radio League, Inc.