Monitoring and control of the spectrum

/ Updated on 20.10.2017

Within the scope of powers related to the management of the radio spectrum, ANACOM provides a permanent service of spectrum monitoring and control (24 hours a day, 365 days a year) in Mainland Portugal and in the Autonomous Regions of the Azores and Madeira.

The spectrum monitoring and control service has the following objectives:

  • Resolution of interference - this is the main and perhaps most complex activity of the spectrum monitoring and control service, since it is essential to ensure that communications from authorised users, including DTT reception (Monitorização TDT, take place without interference.
  • Verification of compliance/enforcement - this constitutes the enforcement part of spectrum monitoring and control: verification of compliance with the rules of spectrum use, such as evaluation of electromagnetic fields
  • Performance of studies on coverage, spectral occupation, quality of service and the preparation of technical opinions - this work is extremely important, not only as technical support to the various areas of ANACOM, but also for the other components of spectrum management, including provision of information relevant to spectrum planning (e.g. degree of frequency band occupation for new services in the context of  processes of refarming) and for the licensing of radiocommunication services (as part of the frequency assignment process).
  • Cooperation with other national bodies - this type of work is increasingly taking on a major role in all undertaken activities, given that spectrum monitoring and control has very specific resources and powers that it can place at the service of other public or private entities, which increasingly make use of ANACOM’s services.
  • International cooperation, carried out at two levels:

- on a daily basis (24 hours per day), with ANACOM’s counterparts, in particular for the resolution of interferences (or other problems) whose cause is sometimes thousands of kilometres away from the network and/or station affected, mainly in short-wave bands and in bands operating satellite services; in particular, joint actions with the regulators of Spain and Morocco;

- on a regular basis, through the participation of ANACOM teams in the daily activities of other international regulators and vice versa, as member countries of the European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administrations (CEPT) and the Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP), and participation in International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and CEPT forums.

To accomplish these objectives, ANACOM has technical resources and monitoring infrastructure, both in Mainland Portugal and in the Autonomous Regions, operated by highly specialised staff.

If a problem is detected in the use of the radio spectrum, in particular situations of interference, the appropriate CMCE - Centro de Monitorização e Controlo do Espectro (Spectrum Monitoring and Control Centre) should be contacted immediately, according to the respective areas of operation.