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06/08/2018

ATB Bolivia Transitions To ISDB-Tb Digital TV With Gatesair

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ATB Bolivia has successfully transitioned to ISDB-Tb digital television in a few areas with the help of GatesAir and Sonotec.

The transition was complete in the cities of Cochabamba and La Paz using GatesAir's Maxiva ULXTE liquid-cooled transmitters. Sonotec was able to install and commission both systems ahead of the June deadline.

The installation fulfilled the first government mandate to deliver DTV programming in these two cities and the city of Santa Cruz within a six-month window.

The Government of Bolivia adopted the ISDB-Tb standard in 2011, and is now in phase one of a gradual, country-wide transition that will be completed in 2024. ATB chose GatesAir for the Cochabamba and La Paz projects due to the longevity, reliability and performance of GatesAir analog TV transmitters in service for many years throughout the country. The new DTV systems transmit one ISDB-Tb HD channel and one mobile channel to populations within and near the city limits, with satellite relay to TV service providers in rural areas in compliance with Bolivian government regulations. ATB anticipates that a third DTV channel will be added to the network shortly, noting that the ULXTE's exceptional bandwidth will help to maximise ISDB-Tb spectrum.

"While the Santa Cruz site had an existing analog TV transmitter we were able to convert in the field, the Cochabamba and La Paz sites were very challenging as we needed new transmitters that could work with the existing RF infrastructure," said Javier Fernandez, ATB's CTO. "We have so far experienced a remarkable improvement in signal quality and expanded coverage throughout these regions with the GatesAir system, along with a flexible architecture that readily supports the introduction of new channels and services. These high-performance, digital TV workflows will dynamically change the business of television in Bolivia, as it represents a great economic and financial effort for our nation's broadcasters."

ATB specifically selected the Maxiva ULXTE transmitter due to the efficiencies of its liquid-cooled design. According to Mr Fernandez, the design greatly lowers air conditioning usage, reducing overall energy consumption.
 
He added that the ULXTE design additionally delivers stronger efficiencies across other operational and maintenance aspects.
 
"The compact size and modularity of these transmitters simplified all installation logistics, which was of high importance due to the challenging timeline for this phase of the DTV transition," said Mr Fernandez. "Additionally, the ULXTE runs very quietly, and has significantly reduced noise pollution in the transmission environment. The user-friendly modularity will also make it very simple to swap our parts and make adjustments and repairs, though we trust that will be not be necessary for several years given our positive experience with the GatesAir brand."
 
To ensure a smooth installation and commissioning process, regional GatesAir sales engineers held local training seminars, followed by on-site visits.
 
"We're very thankful for the opportunity to work with ATB in these early stages of an important transition that will delicately balance the delivery of analog and digital TV services over the next seven years," said Rich Redmond, President and Managing Director, International for GatesAir. "We are confident that the performance and efficiency of our Maxiva transmitters and ULXTE liquid-cooled architecture will reap benefits for ATB Bolivia for years to come, at once reducing labour and expenses for both organisations, while also enabling new DTV services for the Bolivian population."

www.gatesair.com
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