US Radio Station to Install 10,000 Watt R&S Transmitter with HD Radio Option

Rohde & Schwarz has announced that WYCT FM, a 100,000-watt country station in Pensacola, Florida, will be the first U.S. radio station to install the R&S THR9 liquid-cooled transmitter with the HD Radio option. Scheduled for commissioning in July, the new transmitter will replace a 43-year-old, air-cooled transmitter and is expected to deliver significant power savings.

Dave Hoxeng, owner of WYCT, plans to install the new transmitter in late June, after the Nielsen Audio Spring Sweeps end. WYCT recently replaced one of its two aging transmitters with a newer, air-cooled unit, which will serve as a backup once the new R&S THR9 is installed. The new R&S THR9 transmitter is more compact than any of his station’s other transmitters and generates far less heat than the “fire breathers” currently in use.

Because its liquid-cooled system is so efficient, the R&S THR9 will not require any air conditioning, which translates to substantial capital and operational cost savings for the station. Admittedly reluctant at first, Hoxeng is now a strong proponent of liquid-cooled technology.

This new R&S transmitter investment also represents potential audience growth for WYCT. Its 10,000-watt ERP delivers a much stronger digital signal than the station’s current 1,000-watt digital transmitter, which will improve HD Radio signal penetration into offices and homes. The THR9 will also allow WYCT to begin multicasting WNRP, its 10,000-watt sister AM news station, and broadcast its signal across more than five times its current geography.

The HD Radio Generation 4 component of the transmitter offers some critical improvements over WYCT’s current transmitter, which was installed in 2003. The R&S THR9 delivers faster boot times and is more cost effective, which allowed WYCT to stay on budget while purchasing two new exciters (including one hot spare) and an extra importer/exporter for redundancy.

Rohde & Schwarz will showcase the R&S THR9 family of high-power FM transmitters at the 2017 NAB Show, which runs April 22-27 in Las Vegas. With an energy efficiency of up to 75 percent, the THR9 makes terrestrial audio broadcasting extremely efficient. Its space-saving, fully redundant liquid-cooled design lowers energy costs, minimizes space requirements, and minimizes maintenance expenses over the entire system lifetime. The THR9 delivers FM output power of up to 40 kW per rack, with space for additional system components or even multi-transmitter systems, allowing Rohde & Schwarz to offer the highest power density per rack. Click here to learn more about this product.