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01.15.2005
Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
Thales PSIP solution supports ATSC PMCP standard


Featuring an XML interface, Thales offers two standard configurations of PEARL: a stand-alone version with an ASI output for interface to any multiplexer and the "Smart Data Pack."
Thales’ PEARL PSIP product suite now supports the ATSC’s standard (A/76) for Program Metadata Communications Protocol (PMCP). The PMCP standard allows seamless interface between the PSIP generator and the source of EPG data (automation/traffic system) via simple eXtensible Markup Language (XML) message documents using a standard Ethernet interface.

The FCC mandates that DTV stations should be in full compliance with PSIP by Feb. 1.

PEARL, built on a 1RU PC server platform, has been available with an XML interface for several years – it was first displayed at the NAB2003 show - but the recent standardization of PMCP makes this interface even more useful to broadcasters.

Thales offers two standard configurations: a stand-alone version with ASI output for interface to any multiplexer and the “Smart Data Pack”. The Smart Data Pack takes advantage of Thales’ AMBER remultiplexer, acting as a stand-alone PSIP injector and a carouseling device. PEARL then uses an Ethernet link to the AMBER remux, providing inherent redundancy since the AMBER stores the PSIP tables and carousels the information into the final transport stream.

PEARL includes an intuitive editing capability for updates to the EPG information. Available options for include up to 16 days of EIT/ETT tables (four days comes standard), multi-route functionality for station groups, and multi-source management.

PEARL is available with standard interfaces to services such as Tribune Media Service and DecisionMark’s MediaStar, as well as a PMCP input (traffic and automation systems) as well. It can also be ordered to handle multi-source management of these various inputs with prioritization and merging capabilities.

For more information, visit www.thales-bm.com.

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