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Spectrum Management

Many Federal agencies use radio frequency spectrum to perform vital operations. NTIA manages the Federal government's use of spectrum, ensuring that America's domestic and international spectrum needs are met while making efficient use of this limited resource. NTIA carries out this responsibility with assistance and advice from the Interdepartment Radio Advisory Committee and by:

  • establishing and issuing policy regarding allocations and regulations governing the Federal spectrum use;
  • developing plans for the peacetime and wartime use of the spectrum;
  • preparing for, participating in, and implementing the results of international radio conferences;
  • assigning frequencies;
  • maintaining spectrum use databases;
  • reviewing Federal agencies' new telecommunications systems and certifying that spectrum will be available;
  • providing the technical engineering expertise needed to perform specific spectrum resources assessments and automated computer capabilities needed to carry out these investigations;
  • participating in all aspects of the Federal government's communications related emergency readiness activities; and
  • participating in Federal government telecommunications and automated information systems security activities.

Related content


Memorandum of Understanding Between the FCC and NTIA

August 02, 2022

The FCC is an independent agency that is the exclusive regulator of non-Federal spectrum use. NTIA is the sole agency responsible for authorizing Federal spectrum use and is the President's principal advisor on telecommunications policies, coordinating and communicating the views of the Executive Branch. Together, the FCC and NTIA jointly manage the nation's radio spectrum resources in the public interest. The agencies have a long history of cooperation to ensure that spectrum policy decisions foster economic growth, ensure our national and homeland security, maintain U.S.