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AIR-India set for second phase of DRM rollout

India’s public broadcaster, All India Radio (AIR) has completed phase I of the national DRM digital radio roll-out in India.

Thirty-seven DRM transmitters have been installed by AIR throughout the country, and all are now operational. 35 of them are medium wave, out of which two are broadcasting in pure DRM, carrying two audio services in digital; while the other 33 transmitters are working in simulcast mode. Out of these, 25 MW transmitters are working for 1 hour in pure DRM Monday to Saturday.

The transmission powers of these 35 transmitters are: 1000 kW (two), 300 kW (six), 200 kW (10), 100 kW (11) and 20 kW (six); two SW transmitters are 500 kW and 250 kW each.There are two shortwave transmitters, both of which are for international service and are broadcasting in pure DRM.

AIR is now in the process of launching phase-II of the DRM project, which will offer full features and services from these DRM transmitters and further improve service quality. During phase-II, most transmitters will offer a simulcast mode, where they will carry the new DRM signal while still maintaining the analog AM transmission to support existing analog receivers.

It will be followed by Phase-III, which will culminate in the complete transition of radio services to the digital DRM platform.

This will further improve the number and quality of radio services, while offering extra features to the listeners, and also saving tremendous amounts of transmission power every year.