BEIT Paper Track: ATSC 3 Academy I: Lessons from Early Trials

The Broadcast Engineering and Information Technology (BEIT) sessions are the best place at NAB 2019 to get the most focused information about the latest technology.

One of the most industry-changing technologies clearly on the radar for local TV is ATSC 3.0. Thanks to repack, a strong new ATSC 3.0-capable transmitter infrastructure being installed by default. Overseas TV manufacturers are building inventories of ATSC 3.0 receivers to flood the market. What are we learning about the emerging art and science of Next Gen TV?

“Update from the Road to ATSC 3.0” will be presented by ATSC Technology Group Chair Madeleine Noland of LG Electronics as part of the Broadcast Engineering and IT Conference at the 2019 NAB Show. The session will be held Saturday, April 6 from 11:00-11:25 a.m. in room N262/N264 in the Las Vegas Convention Center.

Noland began her TV career developing interactive TV technology. In early 2013, she joined LG Electronics with a focus on development of industry standards and guidelines. Noland participates in a variety of industry organizations on behalf of LG Electronics, and currently services as TG3 Chair for ATSC 3.0. She also serves as Chair of the Guidelines Work Group within the Ultra HD Forum and Chair of the ATSC Advanced Emergency Alert Implementation Team.

PLPs are logical channels in ATSC 3.0 and DVB-T2 that carry one or more services, with individual modulation and robustness settings for each pipe. Photo from a 2018 session.

PLPs are logical channels in ATSC 3.0 and DVB-T2 that carry one or more services, with individual modulation and robustness settings for each pipe. Photo from a 2018 session.

Prepare for Change

Noland told The Broadcast Bridge, “Attendees will gain a deeper understanding of how to navigate the choices that the ATSC 3.0 system offers. What are the smart ways to configure your signal? When should you use multiple Physical Layer Pipes (PLPs)?”

Noland will address several other questions, such as “What can Layer Division Multiplexing (LDM) do? How can you optimize channel acquisition time? What if you want to offer a mobile service? How many services can you effectively simulcast in one RF band? What can you offer your audience beyond today’s digital television service? What are the security capabilities of the Next Gen TV system? How can you take advantage of the Advanced Emergency Information features? How can you evolve your service offerings over time?”

“We will start with a whirlwind tour of the ATSC 3.0 system from top to bottom. New to ATSC 3.0? This will get you grounded. Already familiar? Our goal is for everyone to learn something new,” she promised.

Successful Launch Countdown

“Next, the session will offer information to help engineers and station managers understand the choices available in the ATSC 3.0 in order to make best use of the system’s capabilities. We will draw on several sources. For example, experience from early deployments in Phoenix, Dallas, Raleigh, Santa Barbara and others will provide insights into real world solutions. And the expert advice found in ATSC Recommended Practices, Implementation Guides and Technology Group Reports will offer engineers foundational best practices for a successful launch.”

“And in the spirit of ‘teach a person to fish,’ we will describe the wide range of resources available to those wishing to dig deeper into the options and optimizations available in the Next Gen TV system. Lastly, we will discuss how you can share your stories and insights so that ATSC can continually improve the documentation for everyone,” she continued.

“The goal is for station managers and engineers attending this session to come away with an understanding of the overall system, tips and insights from experts and early adopters, and an arsenal of resources to draw on for planning the ATSC 3.0 launch.”

Want to know more about this year's BEIT Conference? Click the link here to see the official schedule along with a snippet of information about each presentation.

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