WSWG Requests Early Analog Shutdown

Several analog TV stations operating above Channel 51 have requested and received authority to shut down their analog signal before the end of the DTV transition.

Gray Television, licensee of WSWG in Valdosta, Ga., which transmits in analog on Channel 44, is one of the few stations below Channel 52 to request early shutdown. The FCC, in a letter released Jan. 30, granted WSWG permission to operate as a digital-only station on Channel 45.

WSWG’s analog facility has been silent since Jan. 30, 2007, when it “experienced extensive equipment failure.” Gray said the equipment can no longer be repaired and the cost of purchasing and installing new transmitting gear would exceed $180,000, which would be “financially devastating.”

The entire area of within WSWG’s Grade B contour is encompassed by the Grade B contour of WCTV, licensed in Thomasville, Ga., and also owned by Gray. Both stations are CBS affiliates with almost identical programming.

The FCC agreed the public interest would not be served by requiring Gray to construct a new analog replacement facility, given its unique relationship with WCTV.

Doug Lung

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. As vice president of Broadcast Technology for NBCUniversal Local, H. Douglas Lung leads NBC and Telemundo-owned stations’ RF and transmission affairs, including microwave, radars, satellite uplinks, and FCC technical filings. Beginning his career in 1976 at KSCI in Los Angeles, Lung has nearly 50 years of experience in broadcast television engineering. Beginning in 1985, he led the engineering department for what was to become the Telemundo network and station group, assisting in the design, construction and installation of the company’s broadcast and cable facilities. Other projects include work on the launch of Hawaii’s first UHF TV station, the rollout and testing of the ATSC mobile-handheld standard, and software development related to the incentive auction TV spectrum repack.
A longtime columnist for TV Technology, Doug is also a regular contributor to IEEE Broadcast Technology. He is the recipient of the 2023 NAB Television Engineering Award. He also received a Tech Leadership Award from TV Tech publisher Future plc in 2021 and is a member of the IEEE Broadcast Technology Society and the Society of Broadcast Engineers.