Friday, February 12, 2010

Information For Test Applicants

About Us

Radio Examiners of Chanhassen Minnesota is a non-profit organization, providing testing services for all FCC granted commercial radio operator licenses. Our supervising organization is National Radio Examiners of Dallas Texas (NRE). The national NRE organization of Dallas certifies and regulates our local organization.

NRE has approximately 300 examination sites located across the United States. For a list of the National Radio Examiners testing locations check the link to the right or call (toll free) 1-800-669-9594 to reach the NRE Office during normal business hours (9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Central time), Monday through Friday.

Commercial radio operator testing is now directed by private groups known as Commercial Operator Licensing Examination Managers (COLEMs.) Eight COLEMs, the commercial counterpart of the Amateur Service's VEC, have been certified and have entered into a Memorandum of Agreement with the government in much the same manner as VECs (Volunteer Examiner Coordinators.) The Commercial Radio Operator examination program is patterned after the very successful VEC System in the Amateur Service.

The first group to be chosen as a Commercial Operator License Examination Manager was the National Radio Examiners. NRE is now the largest examiner for Commercial Radio Operator licenses and provides examinations utilizing both licensed Commercial and Amateur Extra Class radio operators as Registered Examiners.

Commercial Radio Licenses

Follow this link to a table showing the various Commercial Radio Licenses issued by the FCC.

Effective in 1984. the Federal Communications Commission discontinued the First Class and Second Class Radiotelephone Operator Licenses and replaced them with a special lifetime General Radiotelephone Operator License (GROL).

The GROL license is required by international law for certain radio services - especially the Aviation (Part 87) and the Maritime Services (Part 80.)

The FCC also established a new Marine Radio Operator Permit (MP) that is required to operate two-way radio aboard certain vessels, aviation radiotelephone stations and maritime coast stations.

Due to changes in technology commercial coastal marine telegraphy stations are no longer on the air. As a result effective May 20, 2013 the FCC will NO longer issue New First, Second, or Third Class Radio Telegraph Operator Certificates. The NEW (T) Radio Telegraph Operator License will be issued as a lifetime license, with no expiration date. Applicants must pass the written FCC Elements 1 and 6 only. Discontinued are ELEMENT 5 and telegraphy Elements 1 & 2. Photographs are no longer required to be submitted for the issue of a new license, or for renewal. All existing 1st and 2nd Class T1, T2 Licenses, upon renewal, will be converted to a new LIFETIME RadioTelegraph Operator License (T). Prior holders of T3, 3rd Class RadioTelegraph Licenses will be issued an MROP upon renewal.

EFFECTIVE JANUARY 1, 2010 Test Fees were increased to $50 by National Radio Examiners, Dallas Texas.

Policy: $50.00 for the first 2 Elements (minimum sitting fee $50.00) and $25.00 for each additional Element per sitting.

Test Fee is paid for each additional element taken, pass or failed with minimum $50 per sitting.


MROP – Element 1 - $50 exam fee
GROL – Elements 1 & 3 - $50 exam fee
T2 Elements 1, 6, (No Element 5 and No Code) $50 exam fee
GROL+Radar - Elements 1, 3, 8 - $75 exam fee
GMDSS – Elements 1, 3, 9 - $50 exam fee
GROL+ Radar + GMDSS/M - $100 exam fee
GROL+ Radar + GMDSS/M/O - $125 exam fee

Testing Dates and Times

Test dates and times are by appointment only. To make your appointment Email:

or call 952-402-2155 (week days).

Test Site Location

Tests are typically given at the Carver County Public Library in downtown Chanhassen Minnesota. It is a nice one story brick building, visible when driving west through downtown Chanhassen 78th street.

 7711 Kerber Blvd. Chanhassen, MN 55317
Ph: 952-227-1500 Fax: 952-227-1510

Directions: on the corner of 78th and Kerber, one block north of Highway 5. Across the street from Byerlys.


There is a small 2 level parking ramp next to the library. If the lower level is full you park on the top level. It is accessed by going further north on Kerber Blvd. There is a cement staircase from the top level of the parking ramp to the street level entrence of the Library.

Another surface parking lot is located between the Library and Klein Bank.

Commercial License Types

You need a commercial radio operator license to operate the following:

Ship radio stations: if the vessel carries more than six passengers for hire; or
the radio operates on medium or high frequencies; or the ship sails to foreign ports; or the ship is larger than 300 gross tons and is required to carry a radio station for safety purposes.

Coast stations: which operate on medium or high frequencies, or operate with more than 1,500 watts of peak envelope power.

Aircraft radio stations: except those that use only VHF frequencies on domestic flights.

International fixed public radiotelephone and radiotelegraph stations.

Coast and ship stations transmitting radiotelegraphy.

Operator License NOT Required

You do NOT need a commercial radio Operator license to operate the following:

Coast stations: operating on VHF frequencies with 250 watts or less of carrier power.

Ship stations: operating only on VHF frequencies while sailing on domestic voyages.

Aircraft stations: which operate only on VHF frequencies and do not make foreign flights.

Radio Maintenance and Repair Licensing

You need a commercial radio operator license to repair and maintain the following:

All ship radio and radar stations.
All coast stations.
All hand carried units used to communicate with ships and coast stations on marine frequencies.

All aircraft stations and aeronautical ground stations including hand-carried portable units) used to communicate with aircraft.

International fixed public radiotelephone and radiotelegraph stations.

You do NOT need a commercial radio operator license to operate, repair, or maintain any of the following types of stations:

Two-way land mobile radio equipment, such as that used by police and fire departments, taxicabs and truckers, businesses and industries, ambulances and rescue squads, local, state, and federal government agencies.

Personal radio equipment used in the Citizens Band, Radio Control, and General Mobile radio services.

Auxiliary broadcast stations, such as remote pickup stations.

Domestic public fixed and mobile radio systems, such as mobile telephone systems, cellular systems, rural radio systems, point-to-point microwave systems, multipoint distribution systems, etc.

Stations that operate in the Cable Television Relay Service.

Satellite stations, both uplink and downlink of all types.

NOTE: Possession of a commercial radio operator license or permit does not authorize an individual to operate amateur radio stations. Only a person holding an amateur radio operator license may operate an amateur radio station.

Fee Payments

Payment may be in cash or by personal check. The fee may be paid when you come to take your test. The minimum fee is $50 for the first 2 elements, $25 for every additional element.

If paying by personal check make your check out to "Radio Examiners of Chanhassen".

If paying with cash please bring the exact amount.

ADA Accommodation

If you are physically disable or challenged, our test group will provide appropriate accommodation in keeping with the American With Disabilities Act. If accommodation will be required please inform us before you arrive to ensure the needed resources are available. Typical accommodation might include reading the questions and answers to a visually impaired applicant, or to a person who has difficulty reading.

The paperwork completed by our volunteer group in Chanhassen is mailed to Dallas for processing and submission to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Licenses are granted by the FCC.

Studying For Your Test

Before you come to take your test make sure you have studied. Practice tests are available on the Internet through a number of free web sites.

Identification Required

Applicants must have a US Social Security number, or FCC issued FRN (electronic id number). The FRN number is prefered because this how your license file will eventually be tracked by the FCC. Using the FRN also helps control the identity theft. To get your FRN assigned, go to the FCC licensing web site.

You need to bring a photo copy of, and the actual photo ID to your test session. You will not get the photo copy back. If the applicant is a minor, the parent must show his/her photo ID.

Testing Room

Your test will be given in one of the conference rooms of the library. Ask the librarians at the information desk and they will direct you to the room we are using.


You will need to fill out some forms before taking your test. It will take you about 15 minutes to do this. The forms will be provided when you come to take your test.