Monday, September 21, 2009

Moving our 107.9 Transmitter

We'll be moving our WVPS 107.9 transmitter on Mount Mansfield in the coming weeks. Below, VPR's Director of Engineering Rich Parker explains what has gone into this project - and what you can expect during and after the project is completed:

"We are reaching the final stages of our long term project to move our WVPS 107.9 transmitter and equipment from its previous location in the Vermont Public Television building to a newly constructed facility where the WCAX-TV building used to be. This new facility, a major project of the Mount Mansfield Colocation Association (MMCA, a collaboration of TV and Radio broadcasters on Mt. Mansfield), will be the new permanent home for WVPS.

The preparation and execution of the final move of the transmission equipment will be taking place over the next several weeks. WVPS will go to low power for up to two days this week while engineers start work on the shared transmission lines at the new site. This is the portion near the base of the tower on top of Mount Mansfield.

After that is completed, we will go back up to full power until the end of September, when WVPS goes to low power again for two more days to allow for completion of transmission line work inside the building where the transmitter will be located.

At that point, we will switch to a new, higher-power backup transmitter which will be approximately three times as powerful as the previous low-power backup. WVPS will stay on that new backup transmitter, located at the new transmitter site, for up to ten more days while crews disassemble and move VPR's high powered transmitter down to its new location in the MMCA building.

During the periods of low power operation, some listeners located far from Mt. Mansfield may experience a loss or degradation of signal - more so during the initial low power phases, and somewhat less during the final low power stage (on the new, more powerful backup).

If everything goes as planned, and there are no unexpected delays due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances, we expect WVPS to be returned to full power at it's brand new location on Friday, October 9.

This is the culmination of over ten years of work and planning in coordination with the other broadcasters on Mt. Mansfield. With the need for the TV stations to transition to Digital (DTV), there was a need for an entirely new configuration of towers, buildings, and other facilities
atop Mt. Mansfield. Once this work is completed, WVPS will be in a new building, with excellent heating, cooling, and clean air for the transmitters, and two large powerful generators which supply emergency backup power to the entire facility.

Thank you for your patience as we complete this final stage of a very extensive and complex project - but the results will be a much better home for WVPS for years to come."

For more information about the history and scope the colocation project on Mount Mansfield, click here.

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