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EU implementing regulation on 8.33 KHZ channnel spacing

Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 1079/2012 of 16 November 2012 was
published on 17 November in the EU Official Journal. It lays down the requirements for
voice channel spacing for the Single European Sky. The Regulation comes into force on 7
December and is applicable in all Member States.

In 2007 a regulation laid down the requirements for voice channel spacing above FL 195,
making the use of 8.33 Khz radios mandatory to reduce frequency congestion. At that
time, EAS still hoped that an extension of this requirement below FL 195 could be avoided,
as it would force owners to refit their aircraft, at their own expense, with 8.33 KHz spaced
radios. Many meetings of EAS representatives with other airspace users and talks with
service providers and the Commission were unsuccessful in limiting the requirement to
flying activities above FL 195.

In brief, the requirements of the Regulation Article 4 are as follows:

  • The Regulation will apply to all radios operating in the 117,975 – 137 MHz band (‘the VHF band’)
  • From 17 November 2013, manufacturers must ensure that all radios on the market are 8.33 kHz channel spacing capable.
  • Operators must ensure that all radio equipment put into service from 17 November 2013 includes the 8.33 kHz channel spacing capability.
  • Aircraft with a radio equipage requirement, for which individual certificates of airworthiness or individual flight permits are first issued in the Union from 17 Nov 2013, have to be fitted with radios with 8,33 kHz channel spacing capability.
  • Member States must ensure that by 31 December 2017 at the latest, all radios have the 8,33 kHz channel spacing capability

There are two more important final requirements:

The full text of the Regulation is available in all EU languages

To avoid a rush towards the end of the retrofit period it is wise to plan your retrofit early.
Most installations will be a minor change only but will need some time and, unfortunately,

Source : Europe Air Sports newsletter November 2012

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