Welcome to RF Current, a weekly electronic newsletter focusing on Broadcast technical and F.C.C. related issues. This newsletter is part of The RF Page @ www.transmitter.com, a web site devoted to TV Broadcast RF engineering. For more information see the What is... guide to the R.F. Page site.

Issues are dated each Monday, although recently I've needed an extra day or two to complete each issue. Articles may be posted earlier if time permits or if there is a major, breaking story.

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June 21, 1999 - Issue 170 Final Edition

FCC Mass Media Bureau Announces Availability of Streamlined Forms (June 20)
As part of its proceeding to make its licensing procedures more efficient, the FCC has significantly revised some key broadcast forms. In many cases, open-ended narrative questions have been replaced with yes-no certifications. To date, the following revised broadcast forms are now available:
Form 301 - App. for Construction Permit for Commercial Broadcast Station (May 1999)
Form 314 - App. for Consent to Assignment of Broadcast Station CP or License (March 1999)
Form 315 - App. for Consent to Transfer Control of Entity Holding Broadcast CP or License (March 1999)
Form 316 - App. for Consent to Assign Broadcast CP or License or Transfer Control of Entity... (Mar. 1999)
Effective July 15, 1999, applicants must use the revised forms. These forms are available on the FCC Form Page as Adobe Acrobat PDF files. Note that form 347, application for a Low Power TV, TV Translator or TV Booster Station License, has also changed. While the date remains May 1996, Question 13 has been modified to include the FCC tower registration number or certification that the registration has been filed for.

More detailed information is available in the FCC Public Notice (da991153).

WIRELESS - Motorola President Says Wireless Internet the "Next wave of opportunity" (June 16)
Speaking at the 1999 CDMA World Congress in Hong Kong, Bo Hedfors, executive vice president and president of Motorola, Inc's Network Solutions Sector stated, "At Motorola we believe that the next wave of opportunity for our industry will be known as the 'wireless Internet'. In this new world, we will see the rapid development of mobile services leveraging the Internet and TCP/IP connectivity. Personalized information, transaction-based services, location and time-driven services will be among the winning services."

Hedfors explained "The business model will be based on integrating the Internet value chain with the value chain of network operators. Through this integration, we will create new services, reach new customers and find potential new revenue streams." He urged the wireless industry to begin offering these new, next-generation services and content. "If we do this right, the potential is almost limitless."

More information on Hedfors' remarks may be found in a Motorola Press Release.

ANTENNAS - Scientific American Article Discusses Fractal Antennas (June 15
Fractal Antenna Systems, Inc. is back in the news. The company announced a new family of antenna solutions for wireless applications, including cell phones and wireless LANs. Fractal Chief Telenology Officer Nathan Cohen compared his design with existing 'pillbox' patch antennas, saying "Arrays of conventional patches are a useful approach, but they are large for what they deliver and suffer from quite a bit of mutual coupling. Also, they are grossly overpriced: the customer is paying for a slab of big, square circuit boards inside a box."

As explained in a previous RF Column article, Cohen uses fractal elements to shrink the size of individual antennas. While the antenna elements serve the same purpose as larger elements in phased arrays, they are much smaller, allowing higher gain in less space. The science behind the fractal antenna is explained in an article in the July issue of Scientific American. Additional information, including information on amateur radio uses of fractial antennas may be found on the Fractal Antenna Systems web site.

DTV - Zenith Demos HDTV Solutions for Cable Operators, including an ATSC Remodulator IC (June 13)
At the National Cable Television Association convention in Chicago, Zenith offered a headend ATSC translator that allows cable operators to pass-through broadcast HDTV signals. The translator includes digital signal processing and error correction. It was demonstrated under real world conditions using the DTV signal transmitted by WFLD-DT (channel 31) on the Sears Tower. Zenith also demonstrated a multiplexer that combined two 8-VSB signals into a single 16-VSB signal, in the same 6 MHz bandwidth.

Recognizing the need for a digital successor to the channel 3 or 4 NTSC modulator found in VCRs, set-top boxes, satellite receivers and camcorders, Zenith developed a low cost digital ATSC RF remodulator IC. The IC translates the output of digital devices to an 8-VSB signal compatible with the RF inputs of ATSC compliant DTV receivers. Samples of the ATSC Remodulator IC are available now. Production quantities are planned for mid-1999.

More information is available on the Zenith web site at www.zenith.com and the HDTV Solutions for Cable Operators and ATSC Remodulator IC Press Releases.

DIGITAL TELEVISION STATION ACTIONS - See ac990621.txt for more information.
Call (DT) Ch. Licensee Location ERP (kW) HAAT (m) Antenna
KOVR 25 SCI - Sacramento Lic. Stockton CA 691 594 Non-directional
WFLA 7 Media General B'cstg Tampa FL 465 (mod) n.c. n.c.
WSRE 31 Dst.bd.of Trustees Pensacola FL 151.8 575 (mod) Harris Wavestar TWSC-16C
KTVN 32 Sarkes Tarzian Reno NV 200 914 Dielectric TUP-C4-4-1 SP
KHTV 38 KHTV Houston TX 208 582 Dielectric TFU-18DSC-R CT220SP
KUHT 9 Univ. of Houston System Houston TX 8.4 56 (as listed) Jampro JRP8/3.9
WHRO 16 Hampton Roads Ed. Telcom Hampton-Norfolk VA 200 377 Dielectric TFU-18GTH 04

DIGITAL TELEVISION STATION APPLICATIONS - See ap990618.txtfor more information.
Call (DT) Ch. Licensee Location ERP (kW) HAAT (m) Antenna
KTXL 55 Channel 40 Sacramento CA 1000 (mod) n.c. n.c.
WTVT 12 TVT License Tampa FL 72.3 (mod) n.c. Andrew ATW9V3-ETS-12
KSNC 22 Wichita License Great Bend KS 830 305 Non-directional
KOPX 50 Paxson Oklahoma City Oklahoma City OK 200 483 Non-directional

DIGITAL TELEVISION STATION APPLICATIONS - See ap990615.txt for more information
Call (DT) Ch. Licensee Location ERP (kW) HAAT (m) Antenna
WWAC 50 WWAC Atlantic City NJ 475 293 Dielectric TFU-24GTH-R S230SP
KTPX 28 Paxson Tulsa Okmulgee OK 1000 219 Dielectric TFU-18DSC S190

OTHER Items of Interest

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Last modified June 29, 1999 by Doug Lung dlung@transmitter.com
Copyright 1999 H. Douglas Lung