Australia-based Radio Frequency Systems (RFS) recently opened a new broadcast antenna assembly facility and test range in the United Kingdom.
The new 800-square-meter facility, located at existing RFS premises in Haddenham, England, will also serve as the RFS Europe, Middle East, Africa and India (EMAI) distribution center for switch-frames, combiners and monitoring systems.
The opening ceremony marked the completion of the first locally assembled broadcast antenna, a 144-panel system for deployment as part of the national digital switchover program in the United Kingdom, which involves the upgrade of some 1,150 sites nationwide.
“RFS’s ability to assemble and test broadcast antennas locally represents a significant step forward for the U.K. and European broadcast industry,” said RFS President of Broadcasting, Towers and Defense Martyn Kemel.
“Up until now, we have drawn heavily on expertise from our broadcast headquarters in Australia,” said RFS UK Managing Director Brian Vines. “However following a successful period of technology transfer, we have now developed a strong engineering team here in the United Kingdom, with detailed knowledge of the entire broadcast RF chain, including antennas, filters and combiners.”
According to Vines, with its newly acquired expertise, RFS UK can assemble and test antennas, as well as provide value-added services, such as on-site filter or combiner retuning, a common requirement when equipment is redeployed or upgraded.