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Submitted by Globo Comunicaçao e Participações

ESPN's continued rapid growth was the catalyst for a new transmission facility, which opened on July 15, 2010, and was designed with a 10-year vision of growth. It consists of a 5400sq-ft control room, two equipment rooms and a network operations center to support ESPN's private fiber network.

The heart of the facility is a new automation system, the intelligent resource manager that was developed in collaboration with Evertz Microsystems. This system uses a variety of discrete control systems. The intelligent resource manager provides a common user interface to optimize the use of resources through a real-time data exchange with ESPN's internal event scheduling application. Resources for an event are reserved, configured and routed with just a few mouse clicks, which has yielded significant improvements in workflow efficiency.

Net Insight's Nimbra Vision platform provides service provisioning, bandwidth monitoring and alarm notifications for network events across all nodes in the system, which allows full view and enables fast response times to any network event on a 24/7 basis.

The facility is 3G-compliant with two 1152-squared Evertz EQX 3G routing systems, two 576-squared ASI routing systems, two 256 × 128 L-band routing systems and dual MADI routers. Streamlined management systems and consolidation of core routing systems reduce the complexity of the day-to-day operational workflow.

Best-practice optical and electrical cable management systems have greatly enhanced the integrity of infrastructure installation and maintenance, eliminating clutter encountered in a shared space. The use of embedded audio has expanded audio channel-handling capability from eight to up to 16 channels, and the Consumer Experience Lab allows for real-time evaluation of ESPN's end product, including 3-D and 5.1 discrete surround sound.