Worcester, MA Station WKVB-FM Expands to the Boston-Market By Significantly Improving Its Signal Through a Diplexing Arrangement With WXLO-FMâ€™s GBS HD MaxxCastingâ„˘ Antenna
Educational Media Foundation radio station WKVB-FM in Worcester, Ma., (107.3) has substantially improved its signal and expanded its audience to reach the Boston-market through a diplexing arrangement with WXLO-FMâ€™s existingMaxxCastingâ„˘ system fromGeoBroadcast Solutions. Operating as part of the K-LOVE network of contemporary Christian music radio stations, WKVB is a non-commercial station that benefitted from the MaxxCasting infrastructure to improve its coverage due to the location of its antenna and the local terrain.
The coverage boost represents the first diplex deployment of a MaxxCasting system with HD Radioâ„˘, and opens the way for future multicasting of several stations using a 4-node single-frequency network (SFN).
â€śThe ability to include more than one station in a MaxxCasting system provides multiple broadcasters the ability to improve their signals and increase their listeners through one booster source,â€ť said Bill Hieatt, CTO of GeoBroadcast Solutions. â€śApplying the technology in such a way brings down costs and supports the revenue split business model weâ€™ve proposed for ZoneCasting.â€ť
â€śAfter seeing the success of a MaxxCasting HD deployment at WXLO and Seattleâ€™s KDDS, and the newly provided practically seamless coverage, we decided to explore the technology to improve the listener experience,â€ť said Joe Miller, VP of Signal Development at Educational Media Foundation. â€śWe are quite pleased with the outcome and are in the process of exploring several other markets to implement the GBS technology.â€ť
The FCC is currently considering a rule change petition that would permit radio broadcasters to air geo-targeted programming. In aletter dated May 4, 2020, to the FCC, EMF Vice President Sam Wallington supported the petition to allow FM stations to hyper-target audiences. ZoneCasting will eventually owe its success to MaxxCasting, the foundational architecture that is also currently boosting FM and HD signals at KWFN in San Diego. The improved signal also increases penetration with Nielsen PPM Portable People Meters (PPMs) to help broadcasters accurately measure audiences and set advertising rates.
MaxxCasting combines radio and cellular technology and enables FM Broadcasters using boosters to enhance their signals by reducing interference between the main and booster transmissions through the use of a cluster of low to the ground, high power, highly directionalized synchronized booster sites.
All equipment for Maxxcasting is provided by Doug Tharp at SCMS, the exclusive U.S. distributors for GatesAir/PR&E studio systems and transmitters.
Other important contributors to the project include Bert Goldman of Goldman Engineering Management, which provided the bridge between system design and FCC compliance; and SCMS, which managed equipment sales and staging. Shively provided all directional antennas for the network.
GeoBroadcast Solutions has been continuously testing and improving ZoneCastingâ€™s integration with MaxxCasting in multiple FCC field trials and through simulations and modeling, including HD radio, at its headquarters laboratory in Chicago. The geo-targeting technology uses existing consumer radios that receive FM booster radio stations within the primary stationâ€™s service area. The boosters originate separate localized content and insert it at specific and limited times. When not operating in geotargeting mode, the primary stationâ€™s signal is amplified, thus improving the signal in the area covered by the boosters at all times. This technology, which would be optional for broadcasters, does not impact interference between neighboring stations and does not cause harmful self-interference.
About GeoBroadcast Solutions LLC
GeoBroadcast Solutions was formed in 2011 to develop the ZoneCastingâ„˘ Geo-Targeting platform. This platform has been successfully tested under special FCC authorization. Geo-Targeted separation of the main channel audio of an FM radio station to its listeners allows the ability to split an FM signal into local â€śzones.â€ť Out of this development effort came MaxxCastingâ„˘, which increases signal quality, PPM watermark decoding, and allows geographic targeting and fencing of radio screen advertising. It is successfully deployed and operational in many markets and growing rapidly. Additional information is available atwww.geobroadcastsolutions.com.
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