Sunday, May 28, 2023

Dielectric Switches Up RF Filter Topology with Novel Single-Unit Design

The industry’s first “switchless switch” gives TV and FM engineers a way to proof and troubleshoot transmission feeds from the filter without a dedicated RF switch

Cory Edwards

Cory Edwards, Southeast Asia Sales and OEM Manager, Dielectric

Dielectric has devoted much of Q1 preparing for a busy NAB Show in April, which includes rolling out new product developments for 2023. Several of these new products, including our Apollo RF analytics software and manifold combiners, address emerging requirements for both TV and radio broadcasters in the same solution.

A third new product built for both FM and UHF TV customers has just been announced, and it is especially noteworthy as an RF design advancement that simplifies infrastructure for low-power broadcasters and RF sites. This solution reimagines the RF filter topology as an analysis and troubleshooting point for TV and FM radio engineers, allowing broadcasters to proof feeds within the filter as they exit the transmitter and approach the RF load or the antenna.

Designed primary for low-power broadcasters, Dielectric’s Advanced Filter Topology innovation eliminates the traditional RF switch and other interconnections between the filter and transmitter. This novel “switchless switch” approach creates a single unit that is easy to install, easy to manage, and easy on budgets.

The LPTV repack phase in the United States provided our sales and engineering teams with a new perspective on the challenges that low-power broadcasters face with the footprint, costs and maintenance of their RF systems. We heard from many customers that a single solution to send TV and FM feeds directly into the antenna and dummy load would make their lives easier.

This switchless switch does more than reduce costs and footprints, and in fact, many lower power broadcasters already operate RF systems without the switch to save costs. The RF switch, required in most higher power systems, brings value when proofing the transmitter. If a problem with the transmitter and/or feed is detected, the RF switch allows the engineer to troubleshoot and take quick, decisive action.

The absence of a coaxial or waveguide switch means that the broadcaster cannot isolate the load and determine the problem. Our advanced filter topology builds these capabilities into the filter design. Even without a dedicated RF switch, the broadcaster can now isolate the load and pinpoint whether the problem is in the transmitter, the transmission line or the antenna.

The benefits of eliminating the RF switch are immediately noticed upon evaluating the technology. The RF switch is an active device with moving parts and electronics. The reliability of the new system grows dramatically once these components are removed and replaced with a passive RF device.

No matter where the broadcaster is located, the costs and complexity are substantially reduced. In addition to eliminating the dedicated switch, Dielectric’s solution eliminates plumbing systems and interconnecting components that absorb space inside the facility. Broadcasters not only save money from fewer components, but can now problem solve on the spot. That means fewer troubleshooting calls to suppliers, and a much lower chance of expensive disaster recovery missions that require outside engineering assistance.

Reach out to Dielectric to learn more or request a quote here.

Dielectric | Trusted for Decades. Ready for Tomorrow.
Dielectric | Trusted for Decades. Ready for Tomorrow.https://www.dielectric.com/
With roots dating to 1942, Dielectric helped pioneer the broadcast age, and our drive to innovate has never waned. Over more than 75 years, Dielectric has earned a reputation for offering the world’s most sophisticated antenna and signal-transmission solutions, and an ability to meet the needs of all broadcasters: TV, HD and FM, low- and high-power, serving rural audiences and major metropolitan markets, across the country and around the world.

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