lesftv, on 08 April 2012 - 06:58 AM, said:
I was looking back in the photo files the other day and found pics I took of the new NBN 3 array being delivered to Mt. Sugarloaf. The new array was installed on the tower in October 2005. It will be interesting to learn what will become of this array after November this year. Perhaps, eventually, the top of the tower will be demolished and rebuilt to accomodate a band III array for DAB+. I can't see this happening until after the end of 2013 however. This is just me thinking aloud though.
I missed the VHF array changeover, can't remember why, might've been too busy at work? Was up there one day & it was the old array, went back a couple of months later & it was the new array all finished. It's really been that long, time's slipping away. So they'll get just over 7 years use out of it, & the new Ch.3 transmitter's about the same. Just think how long & well the old transmitter & array served them.
SteveB may tell us otherwise (off forum?), but I'm pretty sure the new array is an RFS VHF Band 2 wide-band panel antenna array. Being this, it's possible it could be re-configured (some antenna panels removed & others turned to be vertical polarisation), & made into a master FM antenna array for KO, NEW & 2NURFM, & possibly NX if they want to move over from the BA site. Then the side mount FM arrays can be taken off the tower. That Northern leg of the tower that they're all mounted on, had to be strengthened before the KOFM antenna array could be installed. Removing them will give back the tower some weight capacity (along with the removal of some of the VHF array), & create more space for microwave & other links dishes & antennas to be easily mounted.
As for a DAB+ Band 3 array, assuming Newcastle gets DAB+ digital radio, it's most likely to be from the BA site considering the ABC & SBS will have more stations than any of the local stations (in digital) & will own 1 of the 2 DAB+ transmitters & BA run & look after their transmitters.
The VHF Band 3 Ch. 5A array will obviously be removed from the BA tower, but depending on the block of channels Newcastle gets for digital TV after the re-stack, the top of the BA tower may need re-building & a new UHF array installed. You may find the ABC & SBS return to the BA site from the NBN site & maybe Prime & SCTen will go to the NBN site or NBN maybe left alone there?
All TV may go to the BA site & the NBN tower becomes radio & communications only or vice versa, with the UHF TV array being remove permanently from the top of one tower or the other?
In Sydney the UHF arrays will be removed from both the Gore Hill & Artarmon Towers, & there's rumours going around, that Channel Nine will move their transmitters to Artarmon, demolish the Willoughby tower & sell the channel Nine studios site, backup transmitters for all the TV stations will be moved to Gore Hill.
Given all the other communications antennas on both Mt Sugarloaf towers, it's unlikely one or the other will become redundant & able to be removed, neither tower will have the weight strength & space capacity to hold all antennas.