Two distinct sets of frequencies are available for SMR operation: 800 MHz and 900 MHz. Prior to Band Reconfiguration, a total of twenty-six and one-half MHz of spectrum was available in the SMR Service (refer to the 800 MHz Band Plan); twenty-one and one-half MHz in the 800 MHz band and five MHz in the 900 MHz band. 800 MHz SMR systems operate on paired 25 kHz channels with 45 MHz separation between the base and mobile channel while 900 MHz systems operate on paired 12.5 kHz channels with 39 MHz separation between the base and mobile channel. Due to the different sizes of the channel bandwidths allocated for 800 MHz and 900 MHz systems, the radio equipment used for 800 MHz SMRs is not compatible with the equipment used for 900 MHz SMRs.
After Band Reconfiguration there will be 14 MHz of spectrum for ESMRs, 2 MHz of spectrum for a Guard Band, 2 MHz of spectrum for an Expansion Band, and 12.5 MHz of spectrum for B/ILT, Public Safety, and Non-Cellular SMRs.
Prior to Band Reconfiguration, there were a total of 430 channel pairs allocated in the 800 MHz SMR services in non-border areas (see rule 90.613 and rule 90.617). To auction licenses in the 800 MHz band, the above channels were combined into six 25 channel blocks on the general category channels (D, D1, E, E1, F, F1) – most of these blocks have been eliminated by band reconfiguration -, three blocks (A, B, and C) on the upper 200 channels, and sixteen blocks (G through V) on the lower 80 channels.
The channel blocks discussed above are different sizes. On the upper 200 channels, block A comprises 20 channel pairs (1MHz), block B comprises 60 channel pairs (3MHz), and block C comprises 120 channel pairs (6MHz). Each of the general category channel blocks contain 25 channel pairs (1.25MHz), and each of the lower 80 channel blocks contain 5 channel pairs (250KHz).
There are a total of 200 channel pairs allocated to the 900 MHz SMR service in non-border areas (see rule 90.613 and rule 90.617). To auction licenses in the 900 MHz band, the above channels were combined into 20 blocks (A through T) with 10 channel pairs (250KHz) per block.