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Administrative Radio Conference (Geneva, 1959)

17 August - 21 December 1959 - Geneva, Switzerland

The main task of the 1959 Administrative Radio Conference was to revise the Radio Regulations and Additional Radio Regulations of Atlantic City, 1947. However, this was complicated due to the major developments in radiocommunication that had taken place in the intervening period between 1947 and 1959. After four months, and despite a variety of challenges, the Conference managed to successfully reach acceptable solutions with respect to the over 6000 proposals submitted to revise the Radio Regulations.

Overall, the Conference succeeded in recognizing and responding to the developments in radio spectrum usage. Among its accomplishments, the Conference agreed to accept new procedures and stricter technical performance requirements for radio equipment as a means to improve the efficiency of the operation of stations using frequencies within the radio spectrum allocated to each service. In addition, it was essential to revise Article 1 of the Radio Regulations to incorporate several new definitions in response to the swift advances in radio engineering and the emergence of new radio services, namely: the space service, the earth-space services, and the radio astronomy service.

Other changes to the existing Radio Regulations included extending and modernizing the international operating procedures for establishing contact and handling messages between ship and shore, between ships, between aircraft and land stations, between aircraft themselves, and between aircraft and ships. In order to facilitate the exchange of information, particularly in distress and rescue operations, a new international standard of pronunciation for various code words used in radio telephone communication by ships and aircraft was agreed upon.

As part of its work, the Conference also had to undertake a thorough overhaul of frequency band allocations, making due allowance for the extraordinary expansion of certain services, such as the broadcasting and aviation services, while providing for the requirements of new radio services such as radio astronomy. Drawing up a new Frequency Allocation Table was a difficult endeavour since it had to accurately reflect the present and future situation of radio services in the various countries. The Conference also devoted much time to the question of the provision of frequencies for space communications and decided to allocate within the Table, and by means of footnotes, frequencies for space research purposes only. Finally, the Conference adopted a Table that extended the allocation of radio spectrum from 10,500 megacycles to 40,000 megacycles - an increase of three times the amount that had been previously allocated.

The Conference also adopted fifteen Resolutions and thirty-seven Recommendations. The Resolutions dealt with matters which could not properly be handled in the Regulations themselves because they were of passing interest, or future interest, only. They did, however, reflect formal decisions taken by the Conference including Resolution 1 which called for the establishment of the Master International Frequency Register which, as of 1 May 1961, replaced the Master Radio Frequency Record.

In addition to revising the Radio Regulations and preparing the new Frequency Allocation Table, the Conference appointed eleven members to the IFRB and instructed the CCIR to study the question of identification of radio emissions from satellites and other space vehicles, as well as the question of providing for the cessation, at appropriate times, of radio emissions from such vehicles.

Administrative Radio Conference (Geneva, 1959)
Use the tabs below to explore the different publications, documents, and resources related to this event. The History of ITU Portal uses Persistent Identifiers for its digitized documents. To copy a Persistent ID, hover the cursor over the document link and then right-click on it.
Radio Regulations and Additional Radio Regulations (Geneva, 1959)(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Appendix 25 to the Radio Regulations (Geneva, 1959)(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Appendix 26 to the Radio Regulations (Geneva, 1959)(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Réglement et réglement additionnel des radiocommunications (Genève, 1959)(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Appendice 25 au Règlement des radiocommunications (Genève, 1959)(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Appendice 26 au Règlement des radiocommunications (Genève, 1959)(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Reglamento y Reglamento Adicional de Radiocomunicaciones (Ginebra, 1959)(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Apéndic 25 al Reglamento de Radiocomunicaciones (Ginebra, 1959)(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Apéndice 26 al Reglamento de Radiocomunicaciones (Ginebra, 1959)(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Radio Regulations and Additional Radio Regulations (Geneva, 1959)(Chinese)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Appendix 25 to the Radio Regulations (Geneva, 1959)(Chinese)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Appendix 26 to the Radio Regulations (Geneva, 1959)(Chinese)download PDF PDF (acrobat)

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List of Documents of CAR-59 (Geneva, 1959)(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Proposals: Series One(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Proposals: Series Two(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Proposals: Series Three(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 1-101(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 101-200(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 201-300(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 301-400(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No.401-500(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 501-600(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 601-700(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 701-800(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 801-915(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 1-100(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 101-200(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 201-300(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 301-400(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 401-500(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 501-600(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 601-700(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 701-800(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 801-875(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Liste des documents de la CAR-59 (Genève, 1959)(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Propositions: Série Une(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Propositions: Série Deux(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Propositions: Série Trois(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 1-100(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 101-200(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 201-300(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 301-400(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 401-500(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 501-600(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 601-700(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 701-800(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document No. 801-915(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 1-100(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 101-200(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 201-300(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 301-400(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 401-500(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 501-600(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 601-700(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 701-800(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Document DT No. 801-875(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Lista de los Documentos de la CAR-59 (Ginebra, 1959)(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Proposiciones: Serie Uno(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Proposiciones: Serie Dos(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Proposiciones: Serie Tres(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos No. 1-100(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos No. 101-200(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos No. 201-300(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos No. 301-400(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos No. 401-500(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos No. 501-600(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos No. 601-700(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos No. 701-800(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos No. 801-915(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos DT No. 1-100(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos DT No. 101-200(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos DT No. 201-300(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos DT No. 301-400(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos DT No. 401-500(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos DT No. 501-600(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos DT No. 601-700(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos DT No. 701-800(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Documentos DT No. 801-875(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)

Chairman

Mr. Charles J. Acton (Canada)

Countries participating

87

Further Reading

"The Administrative Radio Conference (Geneva, 1959)." Telecommunication Journal 26, no. 8 (1959): 180e-184e.(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
"The Achievements of the Geneva Conferences: First Assessment." Telecommunication Journal 26, no. 12 (1959): 256e-258e.(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Henry, A. "The Administrative Radio Conference." Telecommunication Journal 27, no. 3 (1960): 40e-43e.(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Henry, A. "The Administrative Radio Conference." Telecommunication Journal 27, no. 4 (1960): 66e-72e.(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Henry, A. "The Final Acts of the Administrative Radio Conference." Telecommunication Journal 27, no. 7 (1960): 148e-156e.(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
Loeber, C.W. "Administrative Radio Conferences - Is It Time For A Change?" Telecommunication Journal 29, no. 2 (1962): 54-55.(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)

Library Catalogue

Link to the ITU Library Catalogue (Geneva, 1959)(Multilingual) URL

Newsletter

The Morning Electron (Geneva, 1959)(English)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
L'electron du matin (Genève, 1959)(French)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
El Electrón de la Mañana (Ginebra, 1959)(Spanish)download PDF PDF (acrobat)
YearConference NameAcronymRadio ServicesRegionsPlace

1903

Preliminary Conference on Wireless Telegraphy (Berlin, 1903)

Mobile - MaritimeWorldBerlin

1906

International Radiotelegraph Conference (Berlin, 1906)

Mobile - MaritimeWorldBerlin

1912

International Radiotelegraph Conference (London, 1912)

Mobile - MaritimeWorldLondon

1927

International Radiotelegraph Conference (Washington, 1927)

All servicesWorldWashington, D.C.

1929

European Radiotelegraph Conference (Prague, 1929)

BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesPrague

1932

International Radiotelegraph Conference (Madrid, 1932)

All servicesWorldMadrid

1933

European Radio Conference (Lucerne, 1933)

BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesLucerne

1938

International Radiocommunication Conference (Cairo, 1938)

All servicesWorldCairo

1939

European Broadcasting Conference (Montreux, 1939)

Mobile - Aeronautical, BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesMontreux

1947

International Radio Conference (Atlantic City, 1947)

All servicesWorldAtlantic City

1947

International HF Broadcasting Conference (Atlantic City, 1947)

BroadcastingWorldAtlantic City

1948

European Broadcasting Conference (Copenhagen, 1948)

CERBroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesCopenhagen

1948

Regional Maritime Radio Conference (Copenhagen, 1948)

MAR-48Mobile - MaritimeRegional - Radio ConferencesCopenhagen

1948

International Administrative Aeronautical Radio Conference (1st Session) (Geneva, 1948)

Mobile - AeronauticalWorldGeneva

1948

International High Frequency Broadcasting Conference (1st session) (Mexico City, 1948-1949)

CIRAFBroadcastingWorldMexico City

1949

Special Administrative Conference for the North-East Atlantic (LORAN) (Geneva, 1949)

Mobile - MaritimeRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1949

Administrative Radio Conference for Region 1 (Geneva, 1949)

All servicesRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1949

Administrative Radio Conference for Region 3 (Geneva, 1949)

All servicesRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1949

North American Regional Broadcasting Conference (1st Session) (Montreal, 1949)

NARBABroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesMontreal

1949

International Telecommunication Union Region 2 - Fourth Inter-American Radio Conference (Washington, D.C., 1949)

All servicesRegional - Radio ConferencesWashington, D.C.

1949

International Administrative Aeronautical Radio Conference (2nd Session) (Geneva, 1949)

Mobile - AeronauticalWorldGeneva

1950

North American Regional Broadcasting Conference (2nd Session) (Washington, D.C., 1950)

NARBABroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesWashington, D.C.

1950

2nd International High Frequency Broadcasting Conference (Florence-Rapallo, 1950)

CIRAFBroadcastingWorldFlorence-Rapallo

1951

Extraordinary Administrative Radio Conference (Geneva, 1951)

EARC-51All servicesWorldGeneva

1952

European Broadcasting Conference (Stockholm, 1952)

CERBroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesStockholm

1959

Administrative Radio Conference (Geneva, 1959)

All servicesWorldGeneva

1960

Special Regional Conference (Geneva, 1960)

BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1961

European VHF/UHF Broadcasting Conference (Special Regional Conference) (Stockholm, 1961)

CERBroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesStockholm

1963

African VHF/UHF Broadcasting Conference (Geneva, 1963)

BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1963

Extraordinary Administrative Radio Conference to allocate frequency bands for space radiocommunication purposes (Geneva, 1963)

EARC-63SpaceWorldGeneva

1964

African LF/MF Broadcasting Conference (Geneva, 1964)

BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1964

Extraordinary Administrative Radio Conference for the preparation of a revised allotment plan for the aeronautical mobile (R) service (1st session) (Geneva, 1964)

EARC-64Mobile - AeronauticalWorldGeneva

1966

African LF/MF Broadcasting Conference (Geneva, 1966)

BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1966

Extraordinary Administrative Radio Conference for the preparation of a revised allotment plan for the aeronautical mobile (R) service (2nd session) (Geneva, 1966)

EARC-66Mobile - AeronauticalWorldGeneva

1967

World Administrative Radio Conference to deal with matters relating to the maritime mobile service (Geneva, 1967)

WARC MarMobile - MaritimeWorldGeneva

1971

World Administrative Radio Conference for Space Telecommunications (Geneva, 1971)

WARC-71 SpaceWorldGeneva

1974

Regional Administrative LF/MF Broadcasting Conference (Regions 1 and 3) (1st session) (Geneva, 1974)

BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1974

World Maritime Administrative Radio Conference (Geneva, 1974)

WMARC-74Mobile - MaritimeWorldGeneva

1975

Regional Administrative LF/MF Broadcasting Conference (Regions 1 and 3) (2nd session) (Geneva, 1975)

BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1977

World Administrative Radio Conference for the Planning of the Broadcasting-Satellite Service in Frequency Bands 11.7-12.2 GHz (Regions 2 and 3) and 11.7-12.5 GHz (Region 1) (Geneva, 1977)

WARC SAT-77Mobile - Maritime, BroadcastingWorldGeneva

1978

World Administrative Radio Conference on the Aeronautical Mobile (R) Service (Geneva, 1978)

WARC-Aer2Mobile - AeronauticalWorldGeneva

1979

World Administrative Radio Conference (Geneva, 1979)

WARC-79All servicesWorldGeneva

1980

Regional Administrative MF Broadcasting Conference (Region 2) (1st session) (Buenos Aires, 1980)

RARC-1BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesBuenos Aires

1981

Regional Administrative MF Broadcasting Conference (Region 2) (2nd session) (Rio de Janeiro, 1981)

RARC-2BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesRio de Janeiro

1982

Regional Administrative Conference for FM Sound Broadcasting in the VHF band (Region 1 and certain countries concerned in Region 3) (1st session) (Geneva, 1982)

BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1983

Regional Administrative Conference for the planning of the Broadcasting-Satellite Service in Region 2 (Geneva, 1983)

RARC SAT-83Broadcasting, SpaceRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1983

World Administrative Radio Conference for the Mobile Services (Geneva, 1983)

WARC MOB-83Mobile - Land, Mobile - Maritime, Mobile - AeronauticalWorldGeneva

1984

Regional Administrative Conference for FM Sound Broadcasting in the VHF band (Region 1 and certain countries concerned in Region 3) (2nd session) (Geneva, 1984)

BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1984

World Administrative Radio Conference for the Planning of the HF Bands Allocated to the Broadcasting Service (1st session) (Geneva, 1984)

WARC HFBC-84BroadcastingWorldGeneva

1985

Regional Administrative Radio Conference for the Maritime Mobile Service and the Aeronautical Radionavigation Service in certain parts of the MF band in Region 1 (Geneva, 1985)

Mobile - Maritime, Mobile - AeronauticalRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1985

Regional Administrative Radio Conference for the Planning of Frequencies for Maritime Radiobeacons in the European Maritime Area (Geneva, 1985)

Mobile - MaritimeRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1985

Regional Administrative Radio Conference of the Members of the Union in the African Broadcasting Area to abrogate certain parts of the Geneva Agreement (1963) (Geneva, 1985)

GE85BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1985

Regional Administrative Radio Conference of the Members of the Union in the European Broadcasting Area to revise certain parts of the Stockholm Agreement (1961) (Geneva, 1985)

BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1985

World Administrative Radio Conference on the use of the geostationary-satellite orbit and the planning of the space services utilizing it (1st session) (Geneva, 1985)

WARC ORB-85SpaceWorldGeneva

1986

Regional Administrative Radio Conference to establish a plan for the broadcasting service in the band 1605-1705 kHz in Region 2 (1st session) (Geneva, 1986)

RARC BC-R2(1)BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1986

Regional Administrative Radio Conference for the planning of VHF/UHF television broadcasting in the African Broadcasting Area and neighbouring countries (1st session) (Nairobi, 1986)

RARC AFBC(1)BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesNairobi

1987

World Administrative Radio Conference for the Planning of the HF Bands Allocated to the Broadcasting Service (2nd session) (Geneva, 1987)

WARC HFBC-87BroadcastingWorldGeneva

1987

World Administrative Radio Conference for the Mobile Services (Geneva, 1987)

WARC MOB-87Mobile - Land, Mobile - Maritime, Mobile - AeronauticalWorldGeneva

1988

Regional Administrative Radio Conference to establish a plan for the broadcasting service in the band 1605-1705 kHz in Region 2 (2nd session) (Rio de Janeiro, 1988)

RARC BC-R2(2)BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesRio de Janeiro

1988

World Administrative Radio Conference on the use of the geostationary-satellite orbit and the planning of the space services utilizing it (2nd session) (Geneva, 1988)

WARC ORB-88SpaceWorldGeneva

1989

Regional Administrative Radio Conference for the Planning of VHF/UHF Television Broadcasting in the African Broadcasting Area and Neighbouring Countries (2nd session) (Geneva, 1989)

RARC AFBC-2BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1989

Regional Administrative Conference of the Members of the Union in the African Broadcasting Area to abrogate the Regional Agreement for the African Broadcasting Area (Geneva, 1963) (Geneva, 1989)

AF+BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

1992

World Administrative Radio Conference for Dealing with Frequency Allocations in Certain Parts of the Spectrum (Málaga-Torremolinos, 1992)

WARC-92All servicesWorldMalaga-Torremolinos

1993

World Radiocommunication Conference (Geneva, 1993)

WRC-93All servicesWorldGeneva

1995

World Radiocommunication Conference (Geneva, 1995)

WRC-95All servicesWorldGeneva

1997

World Radiocommunication Conference (Geneva, 1997)

WRC-97All servicesWorldGeneva

2000

World Radiocommunication Conference (Istanbul, 2000)

WRC-2000All servicesWorldIstanbul

2003

World Radiocommunication Conference (Geneva, 2003)

WRC-03All servicesWorldGeneva

2004

Regional Radiocommunication Conference for planning of the digital terrestrial broadcasting service in parts of Regions 1 and 3, in the frequency bands 174-230 MHz and 470-862 MHz (Geneva, 2004)

RRC-04BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

2006

Regional Radiocommunication Conference for planning of the digital terrestrial broadcasting service in parts of Regions 1 and 3, in the frequency bands 174-230 MHz and 470-862 MHz (2nd session) (Geneva, 2006)

RRC-06BroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

2006

Regional Radiocommunication Conference for the revision of the Stockholm 1961 Agreement, in the frequency bands 174-230 MHz and 470-862 MHz (Geneva, 2006)

RRC-06-Rev.ST61 / RRC-06-EURBroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

2006

Regional Radiocommunication Conference for the revision of the Geneva 1989 Agreement, in the frequency bands 174-230 MHz and 470-862 MHz (Geneva, 2006)

RRC-06-Rev.GE89 / RRC-06-AFRBroadcastingRegional - Radio ConferencesGeneva

2007

World Radiocommunication Conference (Geneva, 2007)

WRC-07All servicesWorldGeneva

2012

World Radiocommunication Conference (Geneva, 2012)

WRC-12All servicesWorldGeneva

2015

World Radiocommunication Conference (Geneva, 2015)

WRC-15All servicesWorldGeneva

2019

World Radiocommunication Conference (WRC-19) (Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt)

WRC-19N/AWorldSharm el-Sheikh