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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September 20, 1999 - Issue 183 Final Edition

FCC Notice of Proposed Rule Making to Modify DTV Table of Allotments in Champaign, IL (Sept. 20)
Midwest Television, Inc., licensee of WCIA, NTSC Channel 3 in Champaign, Illinois has requested the substitution of DTV Channel 5 for its assigned DTV Channel 48. Midwest Television stated the substitution would enable it to overcome tower loading problems and permit it to use a smaller transmitter, antenna system and transmission line. The FCC found the channel change would meet its allocation requirements. The technical parameters of the modified allotment on Channel 5 would specify an effective radiated power of 4.5 kW at a height above average terrain of 287 meters.

Interested parties may file comments on or before November 9, 1999. Reply comments are due on or before November 24, 1999. Refer to the Notice of Proposed Rule Making (MM Docket 99-289) for details on the request and information on filing comments.

DTV - CEMA Urges FCC to Issue Strong DTV Must-Carry Rule (Sept. 16)
Consumer Electronics Manufacturers Association (CEMA) President Gary Shapiro, reacting to the report on the DTV transition released last week by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), said "The CBO's report reaffirms what we have long said: a strong must-carry requirement is critical to the success of digital television." Shapiro explained,
"Momentum is continuing to build surrounding DTV. Manufacturers have introduced a variety of products and retailers and consumers are buying them. We expect sales to increase as more programming becomes available. However, nearly 70 percent of American homes are connected to cable. The CBO has confirmed that the DTV transition will slow if high-definition television and other new digital services are blocked or down converted by cable systems. It is essential that these new services are available to all Americans, including cable subscribers. A must-carry requirement would promote a successful DTV transition and expedite the auction of the analog spectrum in the time frame that Congress envisioned. We urge the FCC to heed the CBO's conclusions and issue a strong must-carry rule as quickly as possible."
This information is from a CEMA Press Release.

FCC Technological Advisory Council to Hold Second Meeting September 22 (Sept. 14)
The FCC's Technological Advisory Council, chaired by Dr. Robert Lucky, Corporate V.P., Telecordia, will hold its second meeting Wednesday, September 22, from 10 AM until 3 PM in the FCC meeting room TW-C305 at 445 12th St. S.W., Washington, D.C.

Issues to be discussed include; "the current state of the art for software defined radios, cognitive radios, and similar devices, future developments for these technologies, and ways that the availability of such technologies might affect the FCC's traditional approaches to spectrum management; and the current state of knowledge of electromagnetic noise levels and the effects of such noise on the reliability of existing and future communications systems..." The Council will also consider issues on technical trends that might decrease accessibility of telecommunications services by persons with disabilities and telecommunications common carrier netowkr interconnection scenarios.

For information on attending the meeting, refer to the FCC Public Notice (pnet9019).

WIRELESS - EMCEE Finishes Installation for Broadband Wireless Internet System in Pennsylvania (Sept. 14)
EMCEE Broadcast Products announced it completed installation of a high speed wireless Internet system in Sunbury, Pennsylvania. The system operates in the 2.6 GHz band, using three 2 MHz wide downstream channels each capable of carrying data at 10 Mbps. At the present time, upstream access is limited to 33.6K, apparently using a dial-up modem connection. The EMCEE Press Release said talks are underway to upgrade the system to a full two-way RF capability. Internet access is provided by Sunbury Broadband Services. Access charges range from $49.95/month for residential users to $815/month for business users.

OTHER Items of Interest

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Last modified September 21, 1999 by Doug Lung dlung@transmitter.com
Copyright 1999 H. Douglas Lung