Dielectric Shifts Production from Displaced Antenna Arrays to NextGen TVRFecho
As the US spectrum repack or displayed antenna arrays advance toward conclusion, Dielectric, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Sinclair Broadcast Group, is hard at work preparing for the next generation of over-the-air broadcast opportunities. With Dielectric preparing its remaining shipments for Phase 10 – the final repack phase for higher power stations – the company has about 82 percent of the total repack market share, and a strong foundation to address emerging business opportunities.
Much of this success has been due to Dielectric’s advance preparation for the busy repack period, which emphasized capacity throughout the organization. Dielectric established a manufacturing strategy across two facilities that focused on advance production, assembly and stocking of antennas and supporting RF systems. This ensured that Dielectric could not only reliably deliver orders across strict repack timelines, but also accommodate emergency requests and fill new orders unrelated to repack.
“We have booked 959 repack or displaced antenna arrays in North America since we began taking repack orders, and have shipped more than 930 of those arrays over a 30-month period,” said Jay Martin, Vice President of Sales, Dielectric. “Upon adding in non-repack projects, we estimate that Dielectric will ship 1065 medium-to-high power antennas within the same period in North America alone by the conclusion of repack.”
Martin anticipates a busy period ahead for replacement TV antennas worldwide, including more than 200 high-power antennas and transmission line runs in North America that have been in operation for at least 30 years. Dielectric’s existing RF portfolio, augmented by the ongoing development of antennas, filters and components, will ensure that these customers have access to the latest RF technology and manufacturing capacity to meet their technical and delivery needs. Dielectric’s recently-introduced RFHAWKEYE for real-time monitoring of antenna feed systems will serve another critical business need moving forward, providing customers with previously unavailable status monitoring of these essential systems.
Keith Pelletier, Vice President and General Manager, Dielectric, adds that Dielectric’s focus on the launch of LPTV design tools will allow for quicker fulfilment of international TV orders, which largely operate lower power systems, in addition to serving NextGen TV and other domestic LPTV customers.
Pelletier further added that Dielectric has added support for nearly 20 additional antenna patterns that apply to NextGen TV SFN systems and low-power TV systems worldwide, along with a comprehensive software toolset for consultants to enhance SFN coverage analysis and antenna configurations. These advanced toolsets, along with maintaining their high-capacity manufacturing practices established during repack, ensures that Dielectric customers will be well-served for years to come.
Dielectric has presented its expanded Powerlite Series, RFHAWKEYE, and its overall NextGen TV value proposition at NAB Show Express, May 13-14.
In addition to new product information, brochures and video presentations, Dielectric has posted “ATSC 3.0 SFN Network Planning and Antenna Design,” a white paper presented at the 2020 NAB Show by Dielectric VP of Engineering, John Schadler.
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