Dielectric Helps Puerto Rican Broadcasters Meet Early Repack Deadline

RAYMOND, MAINE--Like the island itself, many of Puerto Rico’s TV stations continue to deal with the devastation created by Hurricanes Irma and Maria, which struck about one year ago.

To relieve Puerto Rican TV broadcasters from working to put their RF infrastructures back on air only to face Phase 3 or Phase 10 repack do-overs of the work, the FCC amended its spectrum repack transition phasing to assign a pre-Phase 1 deadline of Aug. 1 to these broadcasters.

[Read: FCC Allows Early Repack In Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands]

To assist these broadcasters, antenna manufacturer Dielectric has expedited orders from Puerto Rican broadcasters for 11 antennas, 10 of which are being used for the spectrum repack. The eleventh is replacing an antenna damaged in the hurricanes, the company said.

The antennas, which include top-mounted and side-mounted primary antennas, are in various states of manufacturing and shipping, Dielectric said. Among them are mid- to high-power TFU series UHF antennas and low-power TLP series antennas. The company is also providing RF filters and components to OEMs for these antennas.

Although Dielectric has two antenna plants with broad manufacturing capability, logistical challenges are bound to surface when there are close to 500 other repack antennas the company has contracted to build, said Jay Martin, Dielectric vice president of sales.

“However, that isn’t going to stand in the way of helping our friends in Puerto Rico. We proactively reached out to them to find out what they needed, and we’ve been diligently generating technical proposals for antenna systems that address their unique needs, such as withstanding Category 5 force winds and other extreme weather conditions,” he said.

For more information on the repack, visit TV Technology's repack silo.

Phil Kurz

Phil Kurz is a contributing editor to TV Tech. He has written about TV and video technology for more than 30 years and served as editor of three leading industry magazines. He earned a Bachelor of Journalism and a Master’s Degree in Journalism from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Journalism.