GatesAir Ships 100th Repack Transmitter To Hearst
GatesAir reached what it called a milestone in its transmitter sales and deliveries for the U.S. spectrum repack with the shipment of its 100th repack transmitter. Hearst Television, one of many U.S. broadcasters exclusively relying on GatesAir for repack sales and services, will take delivery of the high-power Maxiva ULXTE liquid-cooled transmitter for WMOR Tampa, Fla.
GatesAir announced an agreement in December as the exclusive supplier of Maxiva transmitters and related services for 13 Hearst Television stations selected for repack. WMOR, which moves to UHF ch. 18, will install a ULXTE-100 model capable of 62.9 kW. The station’s initial TPO will top out at 58.9 kW, leaving headroom for future digital services as needed.
WMOR is part of the Riverview Antenna Farm owned by American Tower, and will soon install the ULXTE and a new UHF antenna to accommodate the channel change. Martin Faubell, VP of engineering for Hearst Television, has worked closely with GatesAirto ensure the delivery and installation timeline is aligned with WMOR’s Phase 5 repack assignment. He adds that GatesAir’s performance across the initial repack phases has been invaluable to Hearst Television’s success in achieving important deadlines.
“We have been doing business with GatesAir for 20-plus years, and they have consistently made strong products and provided excellent service,” said Faubell. “We started working with GatesAir very early in the planning process with the knowledge that repack was going to be a serious challenge for Hearst Television, as well as the broadcast industry at large.”
Hearst Television has taken already delivery of five repack transmitters, with WTAE Pittsburgh the latest to go on the air with a new Maxiva transmitter on UHF ch. 27. Faubell adds that GatesAir’s high-efficiency technology will play a big role in reducing utility costs and air conditioning requirements, as well as preparing stations for the opportunities that will come with a transition to ATSC 3.0.
“Solid-state technology has improved to the point where excellent efficiency is possible with high-power UHF transmitters,” said Faubell. “With GatesAir’s Maxiva transmitters, the reliability will be higher, and the maintenance and power consumption in our facilities will be lower. As a 24/7/365 business, these advances in technology will provide a very noticeable and welcomed operating change across the industry.”
“The strength of our relationship with Hearst Television is only fortified as we work through the challenges of the spectrum repack together. We greatly value our collaboration together and look forward to an ATSC 3.0 future,” said Joe Mack, GatesAir VP of sales, Americas.