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Harris to Receive Emmy for DTV RF Mask Filters

Harris will be awarded a Technology & Engineering Emmy Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS) for “developing special transmission filters that help broadcasters improve the quality and reduce the costs of operating digital television signals,” the company announced.

The award for “ATSC Broadcast Transmission System RF Filters” will be presented Jan. 7, 2008, at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

The filter was developed Robert Plonka, a principle engineer at Harris until his retirement. The filters have steep “skirts” (the term used to describe the roll-off at the upper and lower band edges of the filter) while keeping in-band group delay and amplitude variations within ranges the ATSC transmitter’s exciter can correct. This allows transmitter tubes to operate at power levels that would otherwise create interference to adjacent channels and allows combining two adjacent channel transmitters into one antenna.

“We’re thrilled to have been selected by NATAS for our efforts to advance ATSC signal transmission through the use of sharply tuned band-pass RF filters,” said Tim Thorsteinson, president of Harris Broadcast Communications. “Today, DTV stations in the United States use these RF filters to stay in strict compliance with FCC specifications. Ensuring that DTV signals maintain highly reduced side-band emission levels means that adjacent spectrum may be used reliably for other purposes without the risk of interference.”