PxPixel
RF Shorts for Oct. 6, 2014 - TvTechnology

RF Shorts for Oct. 6, 2014

A review of RF-related news during the past week
Author:
Publish date:

World's Largest Satellite Fleet Operations Lobby to Protect C-band
Peter B. de Selding's article The World’s Biggest Satellite Fleet Operators Are Lobbying To Keep Global Flight Tracking Off WRC Agenda on SpaceNews.com describes efforts by Intelsat, SES, Eutelsat, Inmarsat, Hispasat, Telenor, Hellas Sat and others to convince global regulators not to extend current radio spectrum allocations for air-to-ground communications links to satellite services.

“The group, the European Satellite Operators Association (ESOA), says 'there is no urgent need for action. ... Related to global flight tracking,' and proposes that regulators turn aside efforts from North America, South America, Asia and Africa to formally adopt a resolution recognizing the satellite link, known as Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast, or ADS-B,” de Selding reports.

He explains, “The issue is whether to extend the regulatory protection of broadcasts in the 1090-megahertz frequency, which covers air-to-ground communications, to cover satellite-to-aircraft links. The disappearance of Malaysian Airlines’ Flight 370 in March has given an added motivation to the effort.” ESOA is concerned the regulations could be flawed as the technical studies normally conducted for any WRC-15 agenda item will note be complete,

The article reports, “The issue is whether to extend the regulatory protection of broadcasts in the 1090-megahertz frequency, which covers air-to-ground communications, to cover satellite-to-aircraft links. The disappearance of Malaysian Airlines’ Flight 370 in March has given an added motivation to the effort.”

See de Selding's article for comments from the companies involved.


El Salvador Stops Digital Terrestrial TV Process
In his article El Salvador stops DTT process on RapidTVNews.com, Juan Fernandez Gonzalez writes, “Already among the most delayed countries in Latin America regarding DTT transition, El Salvador's telecom authority SIGET has now suspended the process.”

SIGET started technical tests one year ago to decide which standard is best for the country, but SIGET's president Blanca Coto said the process has been stopped do to a decision by the supreme justice court (CSJ) which forced SIGET to “suspend the reorganization of the radioelectric spectrum.”

Gonzalez writes, “Although the switch off is set for 2018, El Salvador has still to decide whether to use the ATSC, DVB or ISDB-T standard, and then begin the transition process to DTT.”

Could El Salvador be considering other uses for some of the UHF TV spectrum?


A 2,000-Foot Tower in Chicago?
Construction on The Chicago Spire, a 2,000-foot tower from Santiago Calatrava that tried to become the world's second-tallest building, halted in 2008 due to the recession. It may be starting up again.

C. J. Hughes, in the article Chicago Spire Tries to Rise Again at Construction.com writes, “The developer of the twisting, 2,000-foot tower, Shelbourne North Water Street, is close to paying off $135 million owed to creditors of the bankrupt project, sources close to the project say. Those payments, which could be approved in October, include $109 million to a local division of mega-developer Related Companies, which purchased part of the Spire’s soured loan in 2013. The development team—made up of Shelbourne Development Group plus Atlas Apartment Holdings, a multi-family landlord brought in to provide financing—would then restart construction, the sources add.”

Hughes outlines the history of the building, “Recalling Calatrava’s Turning Torso in Malmo, Sweden, the tapered Spire broke ground in spring 2007, and workers got as far as pouring a foundation for the tower and a seven-level below-grade parking garage before the recession forced construction to a halt in fall 2008. Despite selling 369 apartments, developers returned every down payment. And with the economy tattered, Shelbourne struggled to pay contractors and designers, including Calatrava, who filed a lien against Shelbourne for $11.3 million, though he did receive $15 million in a separate payment, sources say.”

Construction would take more than three years to complete and there questions remain whether there's enough local demand for $1,100/square foot apartments.

Hughes said the only building to top it would be the Burj Khalifa, in Dubai, at 2,723 feet, including its antenna. Willis (Sears) Tower is 1,729 feet with antenna.

There's no mention in the article of space for antennas on The Chicago Spire.