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RF Shorts: Other Items of Interest - Jan. 22, 2010

The FCC is saying it doesn't plan to forcibly take spectrum from broadcasters, but leaves it as a possibility in the future. See John Eggerton's article FCC's Bellaria Says Broadcasters Lobbying Against Scenario That's No Longer On Table Lead spectrum staffer addresses proposals.

TerreStar was granted a license to add an ancillary terrestrial component to its S-band spectrum. TerreStar is using some of the frequencies reallocated from the lower part of the 2 GHz broadcast auxiliary service (BAS) band.

While I missed it at CES, thanks to I’ve learned about a new media server that’s available with up to three ATSC tuners. The XStreamHD media server can capture signals from satellite as well as record up to three broadcast HDTV programs simultaneously.

Finally, Scientific American describes a personal vertical take-off and landing plane that NASA is designing that will run entirely on batteries. While this isn't directly RF-related, you could certainly put a camera and 2 GHz transmitter in it. The article Electric Icarus: NASA Designs a One-Man Stealth Plane includes pictures and a computer generated video showing how it would function. Researchers plan on testing a one-third scale model in March. The device looks simple. Electric motors eliminate the need for the complex mechanical assemblies needed on conventional helicopters. Perhaps one day it will be available as a kit. It sure looks like fun.

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.