2nd WP6A meeting - October 2017

Geneva hosted last 3-11 October the second annual meeting of working party 6A (WP 6A) of study group 6 (SG6) on broadcasting service, whose activities encompass all matters concerning terrestrial broadcasting systems.

The meeting was attended by 75 delegates from 29 administrations and 31 representatives of industry, universities and other organisations.

Regarding digital TV broadcasting, a highlight was continuation of the correspondence group set up in October 2016 to analyse the validity of the methodology for gauging reception quality based on measurements of the modulation error ratio (MER) parameter.

WP 6A continued to study the aforementioned subject; the administrations of Australia and Iran presented some results obtained following measurements made in those countries. In the Australian case, a study was conducted by an independent body with the collaboration of various WP 3K experts (point-to-area propagation), also involving the Australian Bureau of Meteorology. The Australian administration considers that the studies conducted to date indicate that there is evidence of a correlation between the incidence of ducts and TV signal degradation, as verified in the results from measurements of those signals, specifically in the occurrence of MER variations. Iran in turn conducted two distinct tests, gathering measurements from the Persian Gulf coast and from roads located in rural areas. Following those two tests, Iran presented an estimate of the relationship MER may have with the value of the electric field measured in a given location. The future collaboration of other administrations was also requested, specifically through laboratory measurements made in controlled environments, so they can be presented at the next group meeting. WP 3K reported the results obtained and the maintenance of this correspondence group.

Regarding audio broadcasting, a highlight was the presentation given by the delegation from the United States of America (USA) on HD radio, of merely informative nature. The USA presented a document on that service, given that over the years many doubts/questions on the subject have arisen among other administrations. According to the information provided, this kind of service, which guarantees coexistence of analogue and digital signals in existing spectrum, is very important in the USA, enabling the transmission of four different programmes. The experience of this technological transition in the USA has created new services for consumers and generated new business opportunities for broadcasters.

The next WP 6A meeting is scheduled for April 2018 in Geneva.