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Commercial Radio Operator License Program


Radiotelegraph Operator License (T)


The T authorizes the holder to operate, repair, and maintain ship stations, and to repair and maintain coast radiotelegraph stations in the maritime services. It also confers all of the operating authority of a T2.


To qualify, you must:

Term of License

The T is issued for the holder's lifetime.

How to Obtain a License

Submit FCC Form 605 along with the appropriate Proof of Passing Certificates (for the requisite written and/or telegraphy examination elements) to apply. Use the FCC Form 605 and the FCC Form 159 (fee processing form) to renew your license or to replace a lost, stolen, or mutilated license. Many Commercial Operator License Examination Managers (COLEMs) file these documents for applicants who test with them. Ask your COLEM if it provides this service to its customers.


To obtain an FCC Commercial Operator License, applicants must submit, to the Commission, proof of passing written and telegraphy Elements as illustrated in the following table.

View License Comparison Chart Written Elements Telegraphy Elements
Type of License 1 3 6 7 7R 8 9 1 2
Radiotelegraph Operator License Check Mark Check Mark Check Mark Check Mark

Written Examination Elements

Telegraphy Examinations Elements

Telegraphy exams may consist of both transmitting and receiving tests or just a receiving test. Although the FCC rules provide that passing a telegraphy receiving examination is adequate proof of an examinee's ability to both send and receive telegraphy, a COLEM may nonetheless include a sending segment in a telegraphy examination. Examinees must copy by ear and, if subject to a sending test, send by hand plain text and code groups in the international Morse code using all the letters of the alphabet, numerals 0-9, period, comma, question mark, slant mark, and prosigns AR, BT, and SK. Examinees must copy and send at the required speeds for one continuous minute without making any errors. Each test lasts approximately five minutes. The failing of any code test automatically terminates the examination. Code speeds are computed using five letters per word or code group. Punctuation symbols and numbers count as two letters each.

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