Crystal and Artel Solve Signal Acquisition Challenge for Global News Network

Crystal and Artel have teamed to solve a difficult signal acquisition challenge for a leading global news network, which had in past consumed valuable staff time in its broadcast center.

The network achieves this by downlinking a large number of contribution satellite feeds every day to feed its news operation. Many come from familiar sources, but networks must frequently acquire a satellite feed in which the parameters of the signal are unknown, or have been incorrectly conveyed by telephone. Accessing the feed then requires a complex process of trial-and-error by skilled technicians to arrive at the right configuration.

To address this challenge, the network recently acquired the InfinityLink media transport platform equipped with the DLC510 L-Band Demodulator and Satellite Scanner from Artel. The device enables satellite operators and engineers to scan and locate active signals on a satellite and display their configuration. Successful installation of the DLC510 reduced the time required to acquire an unknown signal from up to an hour down to about 15 minutes. Though the equipment delivered a major improvement, it still required time for manual operation of the DLC510, and in the news business, every minute counts. 

The network has long managed contribution and distribution using Crystal Control, a network management system (NMS) from Crystal. Crystal teamed with Artel Video Systems to more fully integrate the DLC510 into the network’s systems. The result was an automated process taking as little as 15 seconds. The Crystal Control system routes the incoming signal to a spectrum analyzer to identify the rough center frequency, with the results displayed in the control room through Crystal’s analyzer interface. The signal is then routed to the Artel DLC510 along with a command from the NMS to target the center frequency. Crystal Control captures the signal parameters from the unit and makes them available for input into an IRD to accurately demodulate the news feed. 

You might also like...

Practical Broadcast Storage - Part 3

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has made its mark on IT and is rapidly advancing into mainstream broadcasting. By employing AI methodologies, specifically machine learning, broadcasters can benefit greatly from the advances in IT infrastructure innovation and advanced storage designs.

IP Control Uncovered

As broadcasters continue to successfully migrate video and audio to IP, attention soon turns to control, interoperability, and interconnectivity to improve reliability and efficiency. In this article, we investigate IP control as we move to IP infrastructures.

Practical Broadcast Storage - Part 2

Broadcast systems are renowned for their high speed and high capacity data demands. Up to recently, they relied on bespoke hardware solutions to deliver the infrastructure required for live real-time uncompressed video. But new advances in IT data storage have…

Practical Broadcast Storage - Part 1

Broadcast and IT technology collaboration is continuing its journey with the cross-over between them becoming ever clearer. Storage is a major growth area with advanced methods achieving greater efficiencies and resilience. And as broadcast repeatedly demands more and more capacity,…

Essential Guide: Live IP Delivery

Broadcasting used to be simple. It required one TV station sending one signal to multiple viewers. Everyone received the same imagery at the same time. That was easy.