Dielectric says it applauds the FCC’s unanimous 4-0 NPRM approval to permit directional FM antenna modeling with computational methods. The new rule will allow FM broadcasters to transition from physical modeling to a more efficient, economical and accurate simulated modeling procedure.
In a statement issued today, the company says the approval indicates that the FCC views computer simulation as an acceptable method to validate the radiation patterns of directional FM antennas and represents the first directional FM pattern verification rule change in 58 years.
“May 19, 2022, was a monumental day for FM broadcasters. The FCC’s adopting new rules allowing computer modeling changes the rules for FM antenna modeling, which for decades has required broadcasters to build physical models and collect measured data to verify antenna patterns,” said Keith Pelletier, president of Dielectric.
Pelletier added that the rule change will ease product-to-market timelines, helping broadcasters upgrade facilities quickly. The increased accuracy and the ability to run infinite patterns to maximize on FCC protections will allow broadcasters ease of mind.
In preparation for the ruling, the company says it has been developing AI processes to fully automate the optimization of FM antenna geometry for each project. Dielectric’s AI-based innovations will ensure that the geometry for each installation will best fit the broadcaster’s desired radiation patterns while maintaining FCC compliance.
“Our trials of AI scripts have proven that we can completely optimize the geometry and not be compromised by time constraints,” said Pelletier. “By simultaneously solving combinations of parasitics, pattern shapers and radiator locations, AI has replaced the slow, inaccurate and limited process of trial and error. We no longer have to settle for being ‘close enough’ when it comes to pattern verification.”
“At the end of the day, their listeners will benefit from this rule change,” he continued. “Dielectric sees this change as significant in the history of FM and is fully prepared to help all broadcasters seek the best possible solution.”
Dielectric first disclosed its Petition for Rulemaking in September last year. The filing, which contains all relevant technical information, is available here.