At the January 16, 1998, meeting, Co-Chair Norman Ornstein queried Judson C. French,
Corporate Director for Digital Television at Harris Corporation about the technical
feasibility of the bandwidth set-aside proposed by panelist Dr. Peter Ward of the U.S.
Geological Survey. Mr. French provided the following written response to Dr. Ornstein.
TO: Norman Ornstein, Co-Chair
Advisory Committee on Public Interest Obligations of Digital Television Broadcasters
FROM: Judson C. French
SUBJECT: Setting Aside 9600 "Baud" for Emergency Notification
- The bandwidth impact is probably minimal and not of great consequence relative to the
benefit gained, but should be reviewed with broadcasters (e.g. NAB, etc.) for their
- For an alert service, 24-hour coverage is needed. Broadcasters should be polled to
determine planned hours of operation for their digital stations. Initial service hours may
differ from eventual operation, and power costs are a major issue for station operating
budgets. Many do not operate 24/7.
- Set manufacturers would need to be polled regarding plans to have certain
processing/receiver functions powered at all times, and to have the ability to switch on the
sound and picture in response to transmitted signals. Because of the need to receive
certain electronic program guide data, these features may well be present (at least in partš)
in the higher-end sets. They may not typically be planned for less expensive sets. Also,
the power to keep sets partially powered, times 220 million sets, will have energy
Hope this helps,
Judson C. French
1 EPG receipt would require continual reception and processing of RF signals and data, but
not the ability to switch on the sets. Timer functions often do allow such switching.
* Ref. Administration's Energy Star program