International spectrum management is the responsibility of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). The ITU Radio Regulations allocate separate bands for each service such as fixed, mobile, broadcasting or amateur. Each ITU member nation implements the Radio Regulations within its borders. In Australia, spectrum management is the responsibility of the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA). It determines frequency allocations and licence conditions for all transmitting stations in Australia and its territories.
Amateurs use a wide variety of different modes. Within one amateur band, activity can include CW, voice, satellite and EME activity, and ATV. The best way of avoiding clashes is to set aside different band segments for each of these activities, so that all amateurs can pursue their interests without interference.
Amateur band plans are voluntary agreements, often known as “Gentlemen’s Agreements”. They are sponsored by the WIA, but they are for the benefit of all amateurs. Most amateurs – WIA members or not – abide by the band plans because it makes sense to give everyone a fair go. Clashes still occur at times, and the usual reason is lack of awareness of the band plans. Most amateurs are willing to change frequency if the problem is explained to them politely.
Full details on the amateur band plans can be found in the Australian Amateur Band Plans document at the WIA web site.
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