Transmitter Site Tour:
Along with working at the University, I also work part time for Clear Channel Communications, the Salisbury/ Ocean city branch. they have six FM and two AM transmitter sites that I take care of. I try to just work at the transmitters and keep away from the studios as much as possible. They have a full time engineer who looks after the asylum.
Here are a couple of the transmitter sites and what they look like.
Remember! a clean site is a happy site, theirs nothing worse then trying to fix something in the middle of the night on a weekend and having to climb over boxes of sales logs from 1986
First is the Bishopville combined site, this site houses the WWFG ( Class B 50 kW ERP) and WLBW ( Class A+ 6 kW ERP) And WOSC (Class A+6 kW ERP) all stations share a common antenna along with a third station WOCM, located in a separate building.
Here you can see the Harris HT-20 for WWFG ( froggy 99) and its stand by FM-10, and the Harris HT-10 and Z-7.5 for WOSC and Harris Z-5 for WLBW
Behind the transmitters are the cavities of the combiner, the transfer switches and dummy loads for all the aux transmitters.
The outside of the site showing the 500 ft tower and our building , the red one. Along with a picture of the combined output power meter. the scale is 0 to 50 Kw, today's power ( for all three stations ) is just over 40 thousand watts.
Because Bishopville has one of the worst utilities around we have a 150 kW Onan diesel backup, with a 900 gallon tank. you can see one of the three of the AC units on the building, all of our transmitter sites are now closed loop systems, not allowing any air in from the outside. so you need lots of backup AC, also the generator has to be able to run not only the transmitters but the AC loads too. We operated three days on the generator during the last hurricane.
Additional Pictures of the "B" Ville site WWFG, WOSC and WLBW Transmitter site
Second is the Salisbury WSBY site, this is one of four of the transmitter sites in Salisbury two FM and two AM. WSBY is a class A+ 6 kW station, and one of the few wear we own the tower and building.
Not as fancy as the Bishopville site, but WSBY dose have two transmitters. Their is a Harris Z-5 along with a QEI backup transmitter, the door on the QEI is open because its in its natural state, broken. in the back of the picture is my packet BBS.
Third is the WQHQ transmitter site, a class B with a ERP of around 50Kw But with a TPO of only 10 kW due to its eight bay antenna.
The main Transmitter is a Harris Z-10 with BE FM-10 as a backup, also have a 50 kW diesel generator on site.
Being a class B station the way we get 50 kW is by antenna gain, but we have had issues with the antenna. in 2011 lighting burnt a hole in the antenna, did not affect our operation but did cause us to louse pressure so we had to have it changed.
That's the new bay on the ground.
And their it goes up the tower.
The Fourth site is WTGM AM 960 known as "The Game" at 5 Kw day /night , this was at one time WBOC AM, with the entire site being built back in the seventies when AM mattered.
The main transmitter is a Harris DAX-5 the aux is a Harris MW-5 5 kW PDM AM transmitters, Main and aux along with two matching Harris phasing cabinets, one for day and one for night. The true test of a broadcast engineer is if they understand the power control system of a MW-5 transmitter, took me a year to learn it and still get a education every time they break.
When WBOC built this site to replace their AM site in town they spared no expense, all the equipment was installed by Harris as a turn key package.
Notice the cabinet work area , with tools! and each of the four towers has its own cinder block building for it base tuning network.
Only site with a bathroom, what luxury! although you have to share it with a 50 kW diesel generator.
Another site in Salisbury is WJDY AM 1470
Its a 5 kW two tower daytime only that is now authorized to operate at 49 Watts at night
The transmitter is another DAX-5 but this station has maybe the oldest continually used broadcast item still in operation.
The Gates Phasor cabinet is from 1949 and has been used at this station from that time. The original building, BC-5 transmitter then MW-5 transmitter are all gone now but the same two tower phasor is still in use. The "High-Watter" sticker is in the back of the cabinet.
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