Fifth-generation (5G) mobile is venturing where no cellular technology has gone before—the centimeter and millimeter wave bands (3 GHz to 300 GHz). And for good reason—there’s virtually no room left in cellular’s traditional sub-3 GHz bands to add enough capacity to shoulder all the additional traffic that 5G technology will enable.

WiFi is just as congested. That’s why in 2014, the FCC relaxed its rules for the 5 GHz band, effectively giving some WiFi devices access to another 100 MHz of spectrum. But with 4G and 5G cellular both offloading some of their traffic to WiFi, that extra 100 MHz won’t go far.

Hence the need for a new, fundamentally different air interface, one that combines traditional radio frequency (RF) technology with visible light. Called Internet of Radio-Light (IoRL), this technology aggregates 5G Component Carriers in the unlicensed 60 GHz millimeter wave (mmWave) band and visible light communications (VLC) in the electromagnetic (EM) spectrum between 400 and 800 THz.  However, WiGig IEEE 802.11ad could equally well be used for the air interfaces with some slight modifications to the system architecture protocols.

This combination enables:

  • Throughput greater than 10 Gbps, making it a viable alternative to WiFi, fiber, and copper for providing high-capacity broadband service in offices, airports, apartment buildings, and other places where demand is the highest.
  • Latencies of less than 1 ms, which is fast enough for delay-intolerant applications such as Internet of Things (IoT) sensors and videoconferencing.
  • Location accuracy of less than 10 cm, making it a good fit for IoT applications such as tracking high-value assets inside buildings, or wayfinding in malls and convention centers.

These are the same places where cellular and WiFi will always struggle to keep up. For example, cement boards and the wire mesh in stucco are great for attenuating signals. Some building owners try to get around that problem by installing Long Term Evolution (LTE) Home eNodeB (HeNBs) to create a private, local-area cellular network. But that infrastructure is expensive, and getting mobile operators’ approval to use their scarce spectrum can take months.

Broadband Coverage as Ubiquitous as Light

IoRL avoids these limitations partly by leveraging the trend toward LED lighting in offices, apartment complexes and other commercial buildings. IoRL uses Remote Radio Light Heads (RRLH), which can be integrated with conventional LED lighting systems. So, during remodels and new construction, the IoRL network installation simply becomes part of the lighting installation rather than an extra step with additional expenses for labor and materials

IoRL also leverages lighting’s ubiquity since the dawn of civilisation. Unlike WiFi access points and HeNBs, lighting fixtures are in every part of a building—even stairwells, restrooms, parking garages, and elevators. That means IoRL automatically has coverage in all of those places.

The RRLH uses 5G’s multi-component carrier feature to aggregate the VLC and mmWave bands to provide more throughput than each technology could provide by itself. Figure 1 provides an overview of the RRLH and other components in an IoRL network. It also shows that mobile operators could use IoRL to offload some of their traffic by enabling interworking with their gNodeBs or to simply act as a 5G Radio Access Network direct interface to the Internet in the Home.


Figure 1. Overview of RRLH and other components in an IoRL network.
Figure 2. Illustrates the IoRL network layers: service, network function virtualization (NFV), software defined networking (SDN) and access.

The access layer has six RRLH controllers, each of which drives up to eight VLC and mmWave RRLH pairs. This architecture enables multiple-input, single-output (MISO) transmission on downlink paths, and single-input, multiple-output (MISO) on uplink paths. The downlink uses MISO diversity to improve reliability by leveraging multipath. For example, if a person accidently blocks one of the mmWave signal path, it’s likely that another mmWave signal and/or a VLC signal will be able to reach the user device. SIMO diversity is used on the uplink and benefits from the same man-made multipath environment in the reciprocal direction.

If all of the signal paths are blocked, IoRL still can maintain a connection by using Multi-Source Streaming (MSS) and Multi-Path TCP. This approach ensures that there’s another low-frequency, low-capacity WLAN path for continued communications and synchronization.

The Intelligent Home IP Gateway (IHIPG) provides additional features to maximize quality of service. For example, the IHIPG uses deep packet inspection to identify video streams. A video transcoding virtual networking function (VNF) can generate a lower quality stream over the WLAN path to devices, while the IoRL network transmits the original, higher quality stream.

This approach is ideal for mission-critical applications. For instance, it ensures a reliable connection for surveillance cameras in airports and parking garages, where people and vehicles block signal paths.

Locate Devices and People with Accuracy as High as 10 cm

IoRL is particularly useful for location-based applications in environments where traditional RF technologies struggle or are unacceptable. Two examples are hospitals and oil/gas facilities, which often restrict the use of cellular, WiFi, and other wireless technologies for safety reasons. These facilities often have architectural features such as steel and lead shielding that block signals.

IoRL sidesteps those challenges by using both visible light and mmWave signals to locate a device, including ones worn by a person, such as a patient or employee. As Figure 3 illustrates, the LEDs transmit light reference signals on specific sub-carriers that are received by sensors such as photodiodes, which are inexpensive to source and install because they’re based on existing illumination technologies, and use the Received Signal Strength at the photo diode receiver to estimate distance travelled. If this process is repeated by three or more RRLH LEDs, then the position of the User Equipment can be estimated by triangulation. If the environment permits the use of RF, too, the addition of mmWave-enabled location technology can pinpoint a device in an area smaller than 10 cm, which is significantly more granular than alternatives such as cellular. Sounding Reference Signals (SRSs) are sent by all user equipment in the room coverage area on specific 5G Subcarriers to specific mmWave RRLHs and the Time Difference of Arrivals measured and used to estimate distance travelled.  If this process is repeated for three of more mmWave RRLH then the position of the User Equipment can also be estimated by triangulation.

Figure 3. VLC-based Indoor Positioning System, location estimation diagram.

IoRL also has several inherent security features. For example, the IHIPG supports security monitoring and management tools, and the highly granular location accuracy makes it fast and easy to find rogue and malicious devices.  

These and other capabilities make IoRL an ideal, much-needed alternative to traditional wired and wireless technologies for providing fast, low-latency, secure, reliable, and seamless broadband in buildings and enclosed spaces such as aircraft, trains, and road vehicles. In the process, IoRL is uniquely positioned to meet the insatiable demand among consumers and businesses for ubiquitous indoor connectivity.

Smart Speakers, 5G, Spectrum and more receive attention

James E O'Neal, Oct. 10


The first day of the IEEE Broadcast Technology Society’s 68th three-day Broadcast Symposium  drilled deeply down into emerging “disruptive” technologies as they affect the broadcast platform.


Heading the list was the rapid rise of “smart speaker” technology and their deployment in the consumer environment. In his presentation “The Broadcaster’s Place in the Smart Speaker Ecosystem,” the NAB’s Senior Director of Technology, Education and Outreach Brian Savoie noted that even though smart speakers were launched only about three years ago, their acceptance and popularity is really unprecedented.    Brian Savoie

[Read: IEEE BTS Fall Broadcast Symposium Gets Down to Business]

“The adoption rate has been very rapid,” said Savoie. “It’s likely to be faster than that of any other consumer device in history.”

He noted that the smart speaker is becoming a gateway for connecting with many services that consumers routinely use, and advised broadcasters that “Alexa is coming to the car” and they needed to make plans to get on that platform. “A hybrid voice-controlled radio was demonstrated at the Orlando Radio Show a couple of weeks ago. It’s coming.” He added some broadcasters could already be ready without knowing it. “If you’re streaming, you may already be on the platform.”


First-day “disruptive” presentations ran the gamut from methodology for sharing of 2025–2110 MHz spectrum between the U.S. Department of Defense and television ENG crews to 5G wireless broadband technology and its possible impact on conventional over-the-air broadcasting. Hybrid over-the-air/internet broadcasting was also on the radar, with one presenter providing information on initial testing of methodology for transmitting not only sight and sound, but also smell, taste, and touch content to provide a completely immersive experience.

Even the first-day luncheon keynote address followed through on the theme with a slightly different aspect of disruptive technology — the concept of storytelling — with Dolby Laboratories’ Chief Scientist Poppy Crum, describing how new and changing media technologies have the potential to change the way storytellers interact with their audiences, and even the storytelling methodology itself.

Activities wrapped up with a presentation on “Pirate Radio and FCC Enforcement” from Charles Cooper, director of the FCC’s Field Division of the Enforcement Bureau. Cooper stated that enforcement of pirate operations has a very high priority at the FCC, and noted that during the past year, 242 notices of unlicensed operation had been issued, and that the highest possible monetary penalty had been issued in the case of a Florida pirate operation.

“We also referred several cases to the federal courts for equipment seizure,” he said.

The conference continues on Wednesday with sessions on AM/FM digital-only broadcasting, ATSC 3.0 and UHD television, and connected car radio.

Broadcast space disruptive technologies being examined


OCT 9, 2018
Bob Weller 

Bob Weller 

For the 68th time, the opening gavel came down and the annual IEEE Broadcast Technology Society’s Fall Symposium got underway with opening remarks by the society’s president, Bill Hayes, and event co-chair Bob Weller describing the day’s conference theme of “Disruptive Technologies in the Broadcast Space.”

“Artificial Intelligence, blockchain, the cloud, immersive technologies and are all examples of these,” said Weller. “Keeping broadcast front and center on the automobile dashboard in the face of Pandora and other streaming services has become a focus of the radio side of our industry. This means offering more choices, and we’ll be hearing about all-digital AM and all-digital-FM implementations that do just that, as well as a panel session on the connected car.”

The three-day symposium is being held at the Key Bridge Marriott Hotel in Arlington, Va., just across the Potomac River from the nation’s capital.

IEEE BTS Fall Symposium Gets Down To Business

ARLINGTON, Va.--()--IEEE Broadcast Technology Society:

Dr. Uma Jayaram, Principal Engineer & Managing Director of Engineering at Intel Sports will be joining the Broadcast Technology Society as a Keynote Speaker on Virtual Reality, Thursday, October 11, 2018 at the 2018 IEEE Broadcast Symposium

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WHAT: Dr. Uma Jayaram is a seasoned executive with over 25 years of experience spanning academia, startups, and corporate America. She is a big picture thinker who sets forth a vision and strategically empowers teams to bring it to life. Uma and her team are revolutionizing the field of sports with groundbreaking technology that has been delivered to premier events and leagues including Winter Olympics 2018, NFL, NBA, NCAA, PGA, and MLB. Her deep passion for innovation informs her leadership style and she is known for her ability to inspire teams to approach challenges and projects with fresh eyes. Several of Uma’s PhD and undergraduate students have been part of the start-ups she co-founded. Uma continues to push the boundaries to build the best future with the top talent in the world.

Currently, she is Principal Engineer and Managing Director of Engineering at Intel Sports. In this role she is responsible for the technology that delivers live event virtual reality experiences to fans. Her team owns the end to end solution that involves proprietary camera and server hardware, stitching algorithms, image processing technology, transcoding, cloud integrations, distribution over CDN, SDKs and front end applications for VR headsets such as Samsung Gear VR, Oculus Go, Google Day Dream and WinMR. Uma brings her deep experience in engineering design and agile practices to the work she does as Managing Director and takes pride in the solution-centric and purpose-driven organization she has created and fostered.

Uma joined Intel in 2016, when the company she co-founded, VOKE, was acquired by Intel. At VOKE Uma held the position of EVP and COO. The unprecedented innovations created at VOKE form one of the key technology pillars of Intel sports today. Together with volumetric event renditions and personalization technologies, Intel Sports is poised to change the game of sports and beyond. Some of the recent work being done by Uma’s team includes integrating the VR experience with volumetric based capabilities, investigating 5G to improve the fan experience, implementing encoding enhancements, and creating a robust platform for integration of adjacent elements such as audio, metadata, and broadcast type storytelling tools.

An effective champion of women, Uma has attracted talented women engineers to her team at Intel. One of the first women to receive an undergraduate degree in Mechanical Engineering from IIT Kharagpur, Uma then completed her MS and PhD degrees at Virginia Tech.

Register at

WHERE: 2018 IEEE Broadcast Symposium at the Key Bridge Marriott in Arlington, Virginia

WHEN: Tuesday, October 9th thru Thursday, October 11th

ABOUT BTS: The IEEE Broadcast Technology Society (BTS) is a technical society and council dedicated toward advancing Broadcast electrical and electronic engineering by maintaining scientific and technical standards, as well as educating its members through various meetings, presentations, events, conferences, and training programs.

Follow IEEE BTS:

TWEET THIS: Register Now to see Dr. Uma Jayaram, Principal Engineer & Managing Director of Engineering at Intel Sports as a Keynote Speaker @BTSSymposium October 9-11 in Arlington, VA

Press, Event & Sponsorship Contact:
Margaux Toral, Society Promotions & Marketing Manager, IEEE Broadcast Technology Society
445 Hoes Lane, Piscataway, NJ 08854, 732.981.3455,



IEEE Broadcast Technology Society
Margaux Toral, Society Promotions & Marketing Manager

atsc smallBTS LOGO 4 HI RES2015SBElogo flatRGB


WASHINGTON, Sept. 7, 2018 – The IEEE Broadcast Technology Society (BTS) and the Society of

Broadcast Engineers (SBE) are partnering with the Advanced Television Systems Committee
(ATSC) to help educate the industry on the implementation and benefits of Next Gen TV
powered by the new ATSC 3.0 standard.


SBE and ATSC announced the development of a new SBE ATSC 3.0 Specialist certification at the
2018 ATSC Next Gen TV Conference in Washington, DC, May 23. The new certification will
benchmark an individual's ATSC 3.0 standards proficiency. Now, together with BTS, SBE and
ATSC are announcing new opportunities for industry professionals to prepare for ATSC 3.0


BTS will be hosting ATSC 3.0 training classes to be taught by expert Gary Sgrignoli of Meintel,
Sgrignoli, and Wallace, the noted digital TV transmission consulting firm. The ATSC 3.0 courses
will be hosted at sites throughout the United States. This one-day course will cover the ATSC
3.0 transmission subsystem and prepare participants to take the ATSC 3.0 certification exam.
Course dates, locations and registration can be found on the Broadcast Technology Society web


SBE will begin a multi-part ATSC 3.0 webinar series this month. Module One, “Introduction to
ATSC 3.0,” will be held Sept. 12, presented by ATSC Technology Group 3 chair, Madeleine
Noland, Senior Advisor, Technology and Standards, at LG Electronics. Module Two, “Overview
of the Physical Layer,” will be held on Oct. 17, presented by Luke Fay, Senior Manager Technical
Standards, Sony Electronics. SBE will present additional ATSC 3.0 webinar modules throughout
2019. For dates and registration visit the SBE website


SBE has identified that the Certified Broadcast Networking Engineer (CBNE) certification will be
a recommended prerequisite for the ATSC 3.0 specialist certification. SBE stands ready to assist
students to complete this step while they take part in ATSC 3.0 educational training.
ATSC 3.0 represents the future of broadcast television. The next-gen broadcast TV system
allows broadcasters to provide new services to viewers. ATSC 3.0 provides a flexible and more
efficient physical layer, mobility, ultra-high definition and high dynamic range images, new
solutions for immersive and personalized audio, an all IP-based transport system, hybrid
broadcast/broadband services, advanced emergency advisories and incorporation of new user
technologies such as interactivity.


The ATSC 3.0 suite of standards has been released, and the FCC has approved the voluntary
implementation of Next Gen TV broadcasting using ATSC 3.0. A number of initial deployments
are underway to explore system performance and new opportunities for broadcasters,
manufacturers and viewers.


About ATSC
The Advanced Television Systems Committee is defining the future of television with the ATSC
3.0 next-generation broadcast standard. ATSC is an international, non-profit organization
developing voluntary standards for digital television. The ATSC’s 140-plus member
organizations represent the broadcast, broadcast equipment, motion picture, consumer
electronics, computer, cable, satellite, and semiconductor industries.
About BTS
The IEEE Broadcast Technology Society is a technical society and council dedicated toward
advancing Broadcast electrical and electronic engineering by maintaining scientific and
technical standards, as well as educating its members through various meetings, presentations,
events, conferences, and training programs


About SBE
The Society of Broadcast Engineers is the professional organization of television and radio
engineers and those in related fields. The SBE has more than 5,000 members in 114 chapters
across the United States and in Hong Kong. SBE offers the preeminent technical broadcast
certification program in the U.S. and an expansive list of educational programs for broadcast
engineers, operators, technicians, and broadcast IT professionals.


In late March, further progress was made in incrementally easing some of the regulatory challenges faced by AM radio stations. This latest batch of new rules, which covers an array of mostly AM “moment method” proof-of-performance related issues, became effective with the publication of the adopted rule changes in the Federal Register.

Garrison Cavell

Garrison Cavell

The text and background for the changes can be found in the FCC’s Third Report and Order in MM Docket No. 13-249 (; I’ve summarized the changes for you at the end of this article.

Radio World readers know that these new rules are a continuation of the FCC’s AM revitalization efforts, which are intended to ensure their continued viability of the AM band. The First Report and Order in MB Docket No. 13-249 ( started it all by opening the companion FM translator process, modifying principal community coverage requirements, eliminating the “ratchet rule,” easing the MDCL implementation process, and relaxing the AM antenna efficiency standards. With more AM-friendly rule changes likely in the future, it’s worth taking a moment and reviewing impact of the first R&O and the drivers for AM station relocation and the potential benefits and challenges of collocation.

As has been discussed in Radio World, the AM radio business model increasingly has become challenged by competing services, a rising noise floor and shrinking effective coverage reach. Meanwhile, the rug is almost literally being pulled out from under existing AM stations as rising real estate values and more lucrative land uses pressure these stations to either find a new transmitting location or go dark.

Developing a brand-new site is fraught with time- and cost-intensive processes such as local permitting, legal contracts, environmental concerns and other hurdles. Often the involved costs and timeframes far exceed the costs of on-site engineering, equipment and construction. As a result, station collocation at an existing AM antenna site is becoming the most attractive option.

The collocation of an AM station with “non-AM” towers, such as FM or TV towers, is often possible, but requires a bit of forethought and may not always be a practical option. Typically, these towers are not base-insulated, so a properly designed skirt wires system must be installed on the host tower to accommodate the AM operation. Depending upon the tower height and the involved AM frequency, some skirt systems can become complicated, and involve tuned and detuned (isolating) sections. Also, insulators will have to be installed in the existing guy wires, (for guyed towers), and a suitable ground system still has to be plowed in.

The often “simpler” option to consider is the use of existing AM transmission sites since much of the necessary infrastructure is already at hand. Of course, the existing tower heights and ground system radial lengths must be compatible — for instance, diplexing a 630 kHz station into a 1590 kHz station may not be feasible because of the big difference in wavelengths. On the other hand, the involved frequencies must not be too close either, due to practical filtering considerations.

A non-directional station can, of course, look at collocating at another non-directional station’s site. Or in the alternative, a non-directional station can share a tower at an existing directional site. This requires the de-tuning of unused towers at the host site in addition to the customary diplexing system filtering hardware and matching system.

A directional station seeking a host will look for another directional station since the necessarily larger acreage is already available at an existing directional site. Of course, you still need to evaluate existing towers at that site to assess whether the heights are compatible and the geometry (tower layout) can accommodate the design needed for your station’s pattern from this new vantage point. Sometimes you can add another tower or towers to an existing site to make things work — and quite often (from a local zoning standpoint) it can be easier to add towers to an existing site than to try to develop a new site from scratch. One caution — even if the tower heights and geometry seem to work, careful consideration has to be given to the involved filter circuits; some situations do not lend themselves to practical (or achievable) solutions.

Site selection and the business case go hand in hand, and the cost implications of collocation are numerous and sometimes complex. What lease terms are available? What replacements, repairs or upgrades will be needed at the site for successful collocation? Are there environmental issues that could become a shared responsibility? An experienced broadcast communications lawyer should be sought to answer these and other related questions.

In all these scenarios, the site location and geometry of the host tower array must meet the tenant’s purposes while still satisfying FCC-mandated (day, night and sometimes “critical hours”) protection of other stations. The site must also be able to provide the desired coverage into communities of interest as well as the station’s city of license. Fortunately, aspects of the FCC’s signal protection requirements and, to a greater extent, principal community coverage requirements and antenna efficiency have been revised under the FCC’s First R&O, providing greater flexibility for site relocations. Other potentially more significant rule changes remain under consideration in the FCC’s “Further Notice".


Skipping back to this article’s beginning topic — the Third Report and Order’s rule changes — the FCC relaxed the partial proof rules for conventionally proofed antenna systems by reducing the number of measurement radials required. You need to only measure eight points on each radial that includes a monitor point.

For arrays proofed with Method-of-Moments technique, the FCC eliminated the biannual sample system recertification requirement. (Recertification is only needed when sample system equipment has been repaired or replaced.) They also clarified the base region model shunt capacitance assumptions that can be used in a MoM proof, eliminated the need for a surveyor’s certification when an existing AM array’s towers are involved for a new station or design (as long as no new towers are added or the existing geometry changed), and deleted the requirement to take new reference point measurements when the same array and pattern is being relicensed.

“Stay tuned” — more changes are likely and warrant our attention and comment as they are being considered.

Gary Cavell is president of Cavell, Mertz & Associates and a past president of the IEEE Broadcast Technology Society.Garrison Cavell


ARLINGTON, Va.--()--IEEE Broadcast Technology Society:

Dr. Poppy Crum, Chief Scientist at Dolby Laboratories will be joining the Broadcast Technology Society as a Keynote Speaker on Tuesday, October 9, 2018 at the 2018 IEEE Broadcast Symposium.

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WHAT: BTS is excited to welcome Dr. Poppy Crum to keynote the Symposium. Dr. Poppy Crum will present “How new dimensions of media are changing how we interact with the audience; we are defining new targets for the future of content consumption. As these reach us through current and developing technological endpoints we will be more connected to our content than ever - And it will be more connected to us. What does this mean for the new relationship between the creator, broadcaster, and audience?”

Poppy Crum is Chief Scientist at Dolby Laboratories. She is also an Adjunct Professor at Stanford University in the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics and the Program in Symbolic Systems. At Dolby, Poppy directs the growth of internal science. She is responsible for integrating neuroscience and sensory data science into algorithm design, technological development, and technology strategy. At Stanford, her work focuses on the impact and feedback potential of new technologies including gaming and immersive environments such as Augmented and Virtual Reality on neuroplasticity and learning.

Poppy is a U.S. representative and vice-chair to the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and a member of the Stanford Research Institute Technical Council. Prior to joining Dolby Laboratories Poppy was Research Faculty in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine where her neurophysiological research focused on understanding the neural correlates of how we hear in a complex acoustic environment and the functional circuitry of the auditory cortex.

Poppy is a Fellow of the Audio Engineering Society. She is a: 2018 recipient of the Advanced Imaging Society’s Distinguished Leadership Award, a 2017 recipient of the Consumer Technology Association’s Technology and Standards Achievement Award for work towards the introduction of over-the-counter hearing-aid devices, and has been named to Billboard Magazine’s 100 most influential female executives in the music industry. She is a frequent speaker on topics related to the intersection of: human experience, artificial intelligence, sensory data-science, and immersive technologies.

Poppy Crum Headshot Dolby USE 1


Register at

WHERE: 2018 IEEE Broadcast Symposium at the Key Bridge Marriott in Arlington, Virginia

WHEN: Tuesday, October 9th thru Thursday, October 11th

ABOUT BTS: The IEEE Broadcast Technology Society (BTS) is a technical society and council dedicated toward advancing Broadcast electrical and electronic engineering by maintaining scientific and technical standards, as well as educating its members through various meetings, presentations, events, conferences, and training programs.

Follow IEEE BTS:

TWEET THIS: Register Now to see Dr. Poppy Crum, Chief Scientist at Dolby Laboratories as a Keynote Speaker @BTSSymposium October 9-11 in Arlington, VA

Press, Event & Sponsorship Contact:
Margaux Toral, Society Promotions & Marketing Manager, IEEE Broadcast Technology Society
445 Hoes Lane, Piscataway, NJ 08854, 732.981.3455,



IEEE Broadcast Technology Society
Margaux Toral, Society Promotions & Marketing Manager

Albert Shuldiner, Chief of the Audio Division of the FCC will be joining the Broadcast Technology Society as a Keynote Speaker on Wednesday, October 10, 2018 at the 2018 IEEE Broadcast Symposium


ARLINGTON, Va.--()--IEEE Broadcast Technology Society:

WHAT: BTS is excited to welcome Al Shuldiner to keynote the Symposium. Al has a combination of both government and commercial executive mass media experience and we are looking forward to hearing his unique insights. Al Shuldiner joined the FCC in January 2018 and serves as Chief of the Audio Division. In that role, he oversees the Commission’s licensing and regulation of AM, FM, FM Translator, FM Booster and Low Power FM stations.

Before joining the Commission, Al was the General Counsel of iBiquity Digital Corporation, the inventor of the HD Radio system for digital AM and FM broadcasting. He managed iBiquity’s legal and regulatory work, including the licensing of the company’s intellectual property and the multiyear effort to obtain FCC approval of the HD Radio system. He also directed the company’s domestic and international standard setting activity. Prior to iBiquity, Al was in private practice representing radio and television broadcasters as well as satellite system proponents and other developers of emerging technologies.

Registration is open for the 2018 IEEE Broadcast Symposium in Arlington, Virginia on October 9-11, 2018. Register now and don’t miss the opportunity for industry professionals and academia to collaborate on current opportunities and challenges in the field of broadcasting. The IEEE Broadcast Symposium is a unique event comprising of high level content, networking opportunities, new equipment/technologies demonstrations and the attendance of broadcast engineering industry experts from around the world.

Register at

WHERE: 2018 IEEE Broadcast Symposium at the Key Bridge Marriott in Arlington, Virginia

WHEN: Tuesday, October 9th thru Thursday, October 11th

ABOUT BTS: The IEEE Broadcast Technology Society (BTS) is a technical society and council dedicated toward advancing Broadcast electrical and electronic engineering by maintaining scientific and technical standards, as well as educating its members through various meetings, presentations, events, conferences, and training programs.

Follow IEEE BTS:


TWEET THIS: Register Now to see Al Shuldiner, Chief of the Audio Division of the FCC as a Keynote Speaker @BTSSymposium October 9-11 in Arlington, VA



Press, Event & Sponsorship:
IEEE Broadcast Technology Society
Margaux Toral, 732-981-3455
Society Promotions & Marketing Manager

Madeleine Noland is Chair of the ATSC 3.0 Technology Group.

Madeleine Noland is Chair of the ATSC 3.0 Technology Group.

To keep pace, broadcast TV migrated to digital signals over the past 20 years, representing the first major technology shift since analog color TV was introduced in the 1950s. Digital broadcast TV offers improved, high-definition pictures, more realistic sound, more channels, and more choices.

But changes in media, how it is accessed and consumed, and consumer behavior continued to evolve at an increasingly rapid rate.

Consumer expectations, new platforms

Consumers, quick to adopt new media and ways to tap into it, have come to expect the ability to access sight-and-sound content from any source on any device, anywhere, anytime – whether that content is broadcast over-the-air, delivered via cable, satellite, phone lines or stored at home.

Digital TV was a start in this direction, but the past dozen years have witnessed technology revolutions in nearly every related field and consumer expectations have risen accordingly. Alternative delivery paths have proliferated. Receiving devices such as smartphones and tablets have proliferated. Consumers expect interactivity. Behind the scenes, major improvements have taken place in video and audio coding efficiency, while broadcast spectrum has become scarcer.

The role of standards

Invisible to consumers are the technical standards that enable solutions to broadcast TV’s challenges. Standards really provide the basis for fundamental shifts in technology because they ensure the interoperability and economies of scale that lead to innovation and market adoption. The standards for digital TV were developed beginning in the late 1980s and approved by the FCC 1996, and it took nearly a decade to move the market to widespread adoption.

As consumers came to expect access to content historically delivered by broadcast TV pretty much anytime, anywhere and device-agnostic, those involved in conceiving and writing applicable standards had to lead the way to a sustainable future. And achieving that future, meeting consumer expectations, meant that new standards had to be extensible, scalable, and adaptable to unforeseen developments.

These are the challenges that have been met by ATSC 3.0, which now has regulatory approval from the U.S. Federal Communication Commission for voluntary commercial services, clearing the way for actual trials in test markets to understand best practices for applying the ATSC 3.0 standards for the next-generation of broadcast TV and how consumers respond to new service offerings.

The process

The process for achieving the ATSC 3.0 suite of standards that enable a future-oriented, commercially viable business model for broadcast TV and commensurate consumer benefits is similar for most technical standards. I will not bore readers of The Broadcast Bridge with the minutiae of actual standards writing and approval. (I personally find it fascinating, but it’s not everyone’s top choice.) Suffice to say that it requires years of work by hundreds of dedicated individuals from the worlds of industry, academia, consultancy, public interest and policy, as well as sponsors, to develop the underlying concepts, architectures and features and hash out the standards to support them. The process basically requires a global consensus among all participants, who bring their collective expertise to bear on every detail of myriad technologies and how best to define them for commercial use in the real world.

This process more or less culminated in 2017 with approval of the bulk of ATSC 3.0 standards and led to the March 2018 approval of commercial licenses by the FCC in specific U.S. markets that will test current best practices for applying the standards and contribute to new ones.

Launching in the ‘real world’

As you read this article, two major trials are underway in “model markets” to test ATSC 3.0 services, consumer response to the offerings and also the simultaneous delivery of ATSC 1.0 which was mandated by the FCC for stations launching ATSC 3.0 services.

In January, Sinclair Broadcast Group and its partners announced that it would broadcast ATSC 3.0 signals in Dallas, Texas. This trial is viewed as a first step toward a national service launch in some or all of Sinclair’s 100 U.S. markets. The Pearl TV Business Alliance – a coalition of broadcast groups backing ATSC 3.0 – announced its Model Market project in Phoenix, Arizona, in concert with 10 local stations there. The two trials, and others such as the joint NAB-CTA ATSC 3.0 test station in Cleveland, Ohio, will exercise different business use cases that the system enables.

These ongoing trials are providing implementers and the ATSC 3.0 community with new insights on recommended practices for implementing the standard, a variety of business and use cases and consumer response to the enhanced services and content on offer. One of our key ATSC 3.0 initiatives going forward is to maintain dialogue between our group and early implementers to improve the standards when additional clarification is needed and help see that the future for broadcast TV is as bright as we envisioned.

Resulting benefits

The ATSC 3.0 standard enables broadcasters to explore many new business models and opportunities, including the long-coveted ability to establish a one-to-one relationship with individual consumers. The creation of hybrid over-the-air (OTA) and over-the-top (OTT) content based on ATSC 3.0 standards is really the first time that broadband and broadcast have been “married,” on a common IP backbone. If new consumer-facing value propositions create “stickiness,” and a competitive advantage, we are likely to see rapid adoption of ATSC 3.0.

With the marriage of broadcast and broadband, consumers will finally realize their evolving demand for access to content from any source on any device, anywhere, all with immersive audio, high-definition video, added services (including improvements in public emergency notifications) and interactivity. In fact, it is difficult to put into words the leap in sensory richness that ATSC 3.0 will enable.

To enjoy these advancements, consumers will need a “receiving device,” and various devices and form factors are expected to come to market. It could be a new ATSC 3.0-enabled TV, a box that feeds 3.0 to your current TV or a mobile device, or perhaps even an autonomous vehicle.

In 2018, after many years of dedicated work, participants in the standards development process for ATSC 3.0 will finally see the fruits of their labors in setting a 21st Century course for the evolution of broadcast TV that will revitalize the industry and bring consumers a plethora of delightful, sensory-rich benefits.

About the author

Madeleine Noland received her Bachelor of Music from the University of Massachusetts in 1989. She began her career in the television industry in 2004 with Backchannelmedia, Inc., an interactive television technology developer.In early 2013, Noland joined LG Electronics with a focus on development of industry standards and guidelines.Noland participates in a variety of industry organizations on behalf of LG, including the IEEE Broadcast Technology Society and has served in leadership roles within the ATSC 3.0 project. She is succeeding Triveni Digital’s Dr. Rich Chernock as ATSC Technology Group Chair. Noland also chairs the Guidelines Work Group within the Ultra HD Forum and the ATSC Advanced Emergency Alert Implementation Team.

She was the 2016 recipient of the prestigious ATSC Bernard J. Lechner Award for her leadership roles related to the development of the next-generation ATSC 3.0 suite of standards.


The IEEE Broadcast Technology Society (BTS) Hosts the “IEEE-BTS Symposium” Technical Sessions at NAB as part of the 2018 Broadcast Engineering and Information Technology Conference (BEITC) at the Las Vegas convention center. The IEEE Broadcast Technology Society is bringing hot topics and industry leaders to the April 2018 NAB Conference in the form of technical sessions.

BTS will be hosting the IEEE-BTS Symposium at NAB as a part of the 2018 BEITC on Sat, 4/7, covering 5G & ATSC 3.0

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Session One 1:30 - 2:50pm - 5G- A Key Enabler for New Verticals and Markets, given by Dr. Athul Prasad, Senior Specialist, Radio Research at NOKIA Bell Labs and BTS Member, aims to provide an overview and current status of 5G in terms of key features, standards evolution and potential deployments. The talk will also focus on the disruptive technology components of 5G that enables deployments in new verticals – such as transport, mining, energy, etc., as well as finding new markets for wireless networks. Based on the work done in 5G-Xcast project, the talk also provides an overview of multicast / broadcast technologies for 5G acting as a key enabler for supporting diverse set of verticals (including media and entertainment, public safety, internet-of-things), and markets.

Session Two 3:20 – 4:40pm – Deployments of the ATSC 3.0 Standard, will include presentations about the current deployment activities of the ATSC 3.0 standard around the United States and Korea. Topics will include the Phoenix Model Market and Advanced Warning and Emergency Alert developments. Speakers will include Anne Schelle, Managing Director of Pearl TV, Madeleine Noland, Consultant to LG Electronics and BTS Member, Pete Sockett, Director of Engineering at Capitol Broadcasting, Mark Aiken, VP Advanced Technology, Sinclair Broadcasting and Richard Friedel, EVP, Fox Networks and BTS Adcom Member.

BTS is pleased to host a condensed version of our Annual 3 day IEEE Broadcast Symposium occurring in October 2018. For more information on the BTS technical sessions and to register, visit

ABOUT BTS: The IEEE Broadcast Technology Society (BTS) is a technical society and council dedicated toward advancing electrical and electronic engineering by maintaining scientific and technical standards, as well as educating its members through various meetings, presentations, events, conferences, and training programs.

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