Ofcom launches electromagnetic field (EMF) emissions consultation

To ensure electromagnetic field (EMF) emissions are kept below the guidelines set by the International Commission on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection (ICNIRP), Ofcom has launched a new consultation on licence conditions for spectrum licensees. This covers equipment used to transmit mobile signals and other wireless services.

It has said that manufacturers, installers and operators of wireless equipment should already be aware of the ICNIRP guidelines and factor them in to how they plan their services, but it will formalise those commitments “to ensure this always remains the case”.

These proposals would mean licensees must operate within the ICNIRP guidelines as a condition of their Ofcom licence – including keeping data and records of any testing to demonstrate their compliance. The regulator has said it welcomes responses to this consultation by 15 May 2020.

Ofcom has also published the latest results from its spectrum measurement programme, which records EMF emissions close to sixteen 5G-enabled mobile phone base stations in 10 cities across the UK and near 60GHz fixed wireless equipment in Liverpool.

It has measured EMF emissions for a number of years but extended the programme to cover the frequencies being used for 5G, given all four UK mobile networks have launched 5G services in the last year.

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