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What is FCC Part 15?

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What is FCC Part 15? What are its different sub parts? Who needs to company with this standard?

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Editorial Tesm - EMC Directory

Apr 24, 2022

FCC part 15 is a standard developed by the American Federal Communications Commission (FCC) which regulates the amount of electromagnetic interference allowed from electronic devices like computers, TVs, Laptops, telephones and a wide range of low-power transmitters. Any electronic device that operates at a frequency of 9 kHz or higher needs to comply with FCC part 15 standards to be sold in the United States. This standard applies to those companies and organizations that want to launch an electronic product in the United States. Failure to comply with FCC Part 15 regulations can result in the suspension in sales of the devices in the United States, along with some hefty fines for the distributor/manufacturer of the device.

FCC Part 15 is part of FCC Title 47. The FCC’s rules and regulations are located in Title 47 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR).

FCC Part 15 Device Classes

The FCC has designed different classes/categories of devices based on where they will be used.

FCC Part 15 Class A Devices: Class A devices are those that are designed for devices that are used for commercial, industrial or business purposes.

FCC Part 15 Class B Devices: Class B devices are those that are intended for use in homes (residential or domestic environments). Examples of such devices include computers, TVs, etc.

These have been segregated into classes because of the different emission patterns from these devices. Contrary to popular belief Class B products have lower emissions and Class A have higher emissions, which is why designers always try to get a class B certification so that they are better able to market their product.

FCC Part 15 is Split into multiple sub-parts:

FCC Part 15A: FCC 15 subpart A regulates the conditions under which an intentional, unintentional, or incidental radiator may be operated without an individual license. The FCC Part 15A standard contains the technical specifications as well as the administrative requirements related to the marketing of FCC Part 15 devices.

FCC Part 15B: FCC Part 15B specifies the maximum power limits for any emission from intentional, unintentional or incidental radiators in the United States. The standard specifies the test methods used to measure these emissions and in which frequency bands to measure them, and how to reduce these emissions and improve susceptibility.

There are a number of other FCC 15 sub-parts that range from C to H.

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