WMBC-TV deploys SFN to improve coverage in NJ, NYC

WMBC-TV, an independent television station in West Caldwell, NJ, has deployed an ATSC single-frequency network (SFN) to improve its coverage in New Jersey and New York City.

The installation allows WMBC-TV to reach target viewing areas in New York that were not adequately served from the broadcaster's New Jersey transmitter due to interference from terrain and building profiles. "The ATSC SFN allows us to overcome specific conditions in the densely built-up areas we serve,” said WMBC-TV Victor Joo, general manager.

Thomson Broadcast upgraded WMBC-TV's existing DCX Paragon transmitter for SFN compatibility and provided a second Thomson Elite 1000 (ELT-3K80-ULA) solid-state transmitter located in the Empire State Building in New York. The addition of this second transmitter in SFN mode increased penetration into the targeted areas, improving WMBC-TV's broadcast signal coverage.

Both transmitters are fitted with the ADAPT-IV exciter and use Thomson Broadcast's FPGA and PowerPC technologies, making upgrades and improvements simple and cost-effective. Thomson Broadcast also provides the SFN multiplexing, with the installation of a NetProcessor 9030 at the WMBC-TV studio to manage the necessary SFN timing information to the two transmitter sites. Thomson Broadcast supplied system setup and commissioning for the project, with third-party verification of system timing at several sites in the WMBC-TV coverage area.

The WMBC-TV project was Thomson Broadcast’s first SFN deployment, said Richard Fiores Jr., company VP, worldwide sales.