The US FCC has authorized the use of Pactor 4 by US hams until Sept 25 2020. This in response to Hurricane Laura. The order is shown below.

Federal Communications Commission DA 20-963
Before the
Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of
Emergency Request for a Temporary Waiver of
Section 97.307(f) of the Commission’s Rules
Adopted: August 27, 2020 Released: August 27, 2020
By the Deputy Chief, Mobility Division, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau:

  1. Introduction. We have before us a request filed by the American Radio Relay League
    (ARRL) for a temporary waiver to permit amateur data transmissions at a higher symbol rate than
    currently is permitted by section 97.307(f) of the Commission’s rules, in order to facilitate hurricane relief
    communications within the continental United States.1 For the reasons set forth below, we grant the
    waiver request.
  2. Background. Section 97.307(f) limits the symbol rate (also known as the baud rate) –
    the rate at which the carrier waveform amplitude, frequency, and/or phase is varied to transmit
    information2 – for high frequency (HF) amateur radioteletype (RTTY)/data transmissions as follows to
    300 bauds for frequencies below 28 MHz (except the 60 meter band), and 1200 bauds in the 10 meter (28-
    29.7 MHz) band.
    The digital code used to encode the signal being transmitted must be one of the codes
    specified in section 97.309(a) of the Commission’s rules, but an amateur station transmitting a RTTY or
    data emission using one of the specified digital codes may use any technique whose technical
    characteristics have been publicly documented, such as CLOVER, G-TOR, or PACTOR.4
  3. In 2016, in response to an ARRL petition for rulemaking, the Commission proposed to
    remove the symbol rate limitations, which it tentatively concluded had become unnecessary due to
    advances in modulation techniques and no longer served a useful purpose.5
    That proceeding is currently
    1 E-mail from Dan Henderson, Call Sign N1ND on behalf of the ARRL to Thomas Derenge, Laura Smith and
    Joshua Smith, FCC (August 26, 2020 14:02 EDT) (Waiver Request); see 47 CFR § 97.307(f).
    2 Amendment of Part 97 of the Commission’s Amateur Radio Service Rules to Permit Greater Flexibility in Data
    Communications, Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, 31 FCC Rcd 8485, 8485, para. 1 (2016) (Baud Rate NPRM).
    3 47 C.F.R. § 97.307(f)(3), (4). In the 60 meter (5.3305-5.4064 MHz) band, there is no maximum symbol rate, but
    bandwidth is limited to 2.8 kilohertz for data and 60 hertz for RTTY. See 47 CFR § 97.307(f)(14).
    4 47 C.F.R. §§ 97.307(f)(3), (4), 97.309(a)(4). CLOVER, G-TOR, and PACTOR are different techniques used to
    increase the efficiency of digital communications. Baud Rate NPRM, 31 FCC Rcd at 8486, n.18.
    5 See Baud Rate NPRM, 31 FCC Rcd at 8458, para. 8.
    Federal Communications Commission DA 20-963
  4. ARRL seeks this waiver for those licensed radio amateurs who are directly involved with
    hurricane relief via High Frequency Amateur Radio using PACTOR 4 modems in communications within
    the Continental United States relative to impending Hurricane Laura.6 ARRL states that Section 97.307(f)
    of the Commission’s Rules prevents the use of PACTOR 4 emissions, which is a data protocol that
    permits relatively high-speed data transmission in the High Frequency (HF) bands and many Amateur
    stations active in emergency communications preparedness are capable of using. They also point out that
    the past FCC temporary waivers have allowed this protocol in similar events including Hurricane Maria,
    Typhoon relief communications in Hawaii and Hurricane Dorian.
  5. ARRL also states that trained amateur radio operators with communications equipment in
    the southeastern United States are actively preparing to assist radio amateurs involved with the Amateur
    Radio Emergency Service (ARES) working with federal, state and local emergency management officials
    to assist with disaster relief communications in anticipation of the arrival on the Gulf Coast of Hurricane
    Laura.7 This equipment includes PACTOR radio modems that are capable of both PACTOR 3 and
    PACTOR 4 emissions and the higher data rates offered by PACTOR 4 emissions are critical to sending
    hurricane relief communications including lists of needed and distributed supplies.
  6. Discussion. To obtain a waiver of the Commission’s rules, a petitioner must demonstrate
    either that (i) the underlying purpose of the rule(s) would not be served or would be frustrated by
    application to the present case, and that a grant of the waiver would be in the public interest; or (ii) in
    view of unique or unusual factual circumstances of the instant case, application of the rule(s) would be
    inequitable, unduly burdensome, or contrary to the public interest, or the applicant has no reasonable
    We conclude that ARRL’s request should be granted.
  7. ARRL stands ready to assist the area potentially impacted by Hurricane Laura to conduct
    disaster relief communications.9 While PACTOR 3 and PACTOR 4 modems are downward-compatible
    with slower speed versions of PACTOR, ARRL asserts that the higher data rates offered by PACTOR 3
    and PACTOR 4 emissions are critical to sending hurricane relief communications.10
  8. We conclude that granting the requested waiver is in the public interest. Hurricane Laura
    has the potential to cause massive destruction states along the Gulf of Mexico, and communications
    services will likely be disrupted. Thus, to accommodate amateur radio operators assisting in the recovery
    efforts, we grant the ARRL’s waiver request for the period of 30 days from the date of this Order. The
    waiver is limited to amateur radio operators in the continental United States using PACTOR 3 and
    PACTOR 4 emissions who are directly involved with HF hurricane relief communications.
  9. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that pursuant to section 4(i) of the Communications Act
    of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. § 154(i), and section 1.925 of the Commission’s rules, 47 CFR § 1.925,
    the Emergency Request for a Temporary Waiver of Section 97.307(f) of the Commission’s Rules filed by
    the American Radio Relay League on August 26, 2020, IS GRANTED as set forth above.
    6 See Waiver Request.
    7 See Waiver Request.
    8 47 CFR §§ 1.925(b)(3).
    9 See Waiver Request.
    10 See id.
    Federal Communications Commission DA 20-963
  10. This action is taken under delegated authority pursuant to sections 0.131 and 0.331 of the
    Commission’s rules, 47 CFR §§ 0.131, 0.331.
    Thomas Derenge
    Deputy Chief, Mobility Division
    Wireless Telecommunications Bureau