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Naming guidelines for Satellite Networks, Earth stations and Radioastronomy Stations​

The name of the satellite network, earth station or radioastronomy station recorded in the Space Network Systems (SNS) database is the identity of the satellite network, earth station or radioastronomy station as specified in item A.1 of Appendix 4 of the Radio Regulations. It is a mandatory item for all networks and stations.

1 - Naming Rules for Satellite Network

The name of a satellite network constitutes the identity of a specific satellite. It should be unique for each satellite network.
An identity for a geostationary-satellite network can only correspond to one nominal orbital position; it is not possible to have one satellite name at two or more nominal orbital positions.
Although it is possible to indicate the orbital position in the name, due to the possibility of changing orbital position from one phase to another, this could result in confusion. Administrations are therefore discouraged from indicating the orbital position in the satellite name, although doing so will still be accepted by the Bureau.
When an administration requests to change an orbital position of a satellite network which would conflict with an orbital position that is indicated in its name, the Bureau shall advise the notifying administration to change the name of the satellite network so as to reflect the current orbital position.
Any request to change the name of a satellite network will be checked against the guidelines listed below. If such a request is found to be acceptable, the name change will be effected for all Article 9 and 11 filings in the SNS relating to this satellite network. For example, if a change of name is requested at the stage of notification, the Bureau will update this change in the advance publication (API), coordination request (CR/C) and Resolution 49 due diligence information as appropriate, in addition to publishing it in the notification. For filings under Appendices 30, 30A and 30B, the satellite name at the notification stage may be different to the name recorded in the relevant Plan or List. The Bureau maintains a list of name-changes of satellite networks that can be consulted at the following URL: Within a satellite filing, associated earth stations with the same name shall contain the same set of characteristics. However, the same name can be used for an associated earth station with different characteristics if it is used in a different satellite filing.

2 - Naming Rules for Earth Stations

Since an earth station may operate with different satellite networks, each earth station-satellite network pair is a separate notice, the SNS is structured such that an earth station name can be repeated in different notices. The earth-station name and satellite network name together forms the unique identifier of the earth station as it is recorded in the SNS.
Note that, for an earth station, any change of satellite network would imply that it is a new earth station filing.

3 - Naming Rules for Radioastronmy Stations

The name of a radioastronomy station should be unique.

4 - General Naming Rules

4.1 - Maximum Length
Names for satellite networks, earth stations and radioastronomy stations are limited to a maximum of 20 characters.
4.2 - Acceptable Characters
Only the following characters are acceptable:
0​ 0​ L​ L​
1​ 1​ M​ M​
2​ 2​ N​ N​
3​ 3​ O​ O​
4​ 4​ P​ P​
5​ 5​ Q​ Q​
6​ 6​ R​ R​
7​ 7​ S​ S​
8​ 8​ T​ T​
9​ 9​ U​ U​
A​ A​ V​ V​
B​ B​ W​ W​
C​ C​ X​ X​
D​ D​ Y Y​
E​ E​ Z​ Z​
F​ F​ -​ hyphen​
G​ G​ _​
horizontal bar (underscore)
H​ H​ .​
period (fullstop)
I​ I​ (​
left parenthesis
J​ J​ )​
right parenthesis
K​ K​ Space (in between other characters)*​
* Space should not be used consecutively
4.3 Prohibited Characters
Character​ Description​
horizontal tab
line feed
carriage return
 ​  leading or trailing space
 apostrophe (acute accent, close single quote)
 quotation mark
At sign
grave accent (open single quote, backquote)
number sign
percent sign
less than
greater than
exclamation mark
left square bracket
right square bracket
dollar sign
question mark
left curly brace
right curly brace
plus sign
equals sign
reverse solidus (backslash)
solidus (slash)
vertical bar​
The Bureau has found that the use of the above special characters in the names of satellite networks might produce unpredictable issues as some software are able to accept them, while others not. Although the submission of names containing one of these characters may have been accepted in past, the Bureau occasionally experienced difficulties in the data processing of such networks.  Whilst the Bureau can strive to ensure that these can be handled by BR space software, the Bureau is unable to ensure their compatibility with commercial office software or operating systems. Consequently, the use of these characters is now prohibited for submission of new satellite networks earth stations and radioastronomy stations.​