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Nautel Participates in India’s Digital Tests

Digital Multiplexing supports up to six channels from one transmitter

India is working to decide how to deploy digital radio on the FM band; and Nautel is calling attention to its part in that process.

The RF manufacturer noted that both Digital Radio Mondiale and HD Radio are being evaluated in digital broadcast tests in India.

“All India Radio, operated by Prasar Bharati, has been testing methods of broadcasting multiple digital signals from a single FM transmitter in order to provide a wider range of services,” it said in an announcement.

“Both DRM and HD Radio standards are being evaluated; in both cases Nautel’s proprietary Digital Multiplexing technology has been instrumental in demonstrating the full potential of digital transmission.”

Nautel AUI shows tests of HD Radio and DRM for India's FM band
Nautel’s user interface shows digital multiplexing that combines multiple digital signals in the FM band using HD Radio, left, and DRM.

Nautel CTO Philip Schmid is presenting a paper on digital multiplexing at this week’s ABU virtual conference.

The digital multiplexing concept allows a user to combine multiple digital radio signals in the FM band, which are received via existing digital radio receivers.

“Nautel transmitters using digital multiplexing allow broadcasters to operate multiple channel allocations out of one transmitter, one antenna, and one location, which reduces their equipment needs,” Schmid said.

[Related: “Digital Radio Mondiale in Focus in India”]

[Related: “HD Radio and Digital FM in India”]

Nautel said the tests done by Prasar Bharati “have successfully demonstrated the viability of operating up to six separate digital channels from one transmitter, each of which carries multiple HD Radio or DRM services. Each channel can be operated independently, allowing several broadcasters to use the same transmitter while maintaining control over their content and distribution.”

Schmid said the concept is a suitable solution for nationwide rollouts of digital broadcasting, “especially in applications where multilingual services are required.” He also said the technology is applicable to single-frequency networks, with some of the content remaining local or regional while other channels are sent nationwide.

Nautel was involved in the rollout of digital MW broadcasting in India; 33 NX Series transmitters cover most of the country with a DRM signal.