GatesAir is working with Croatian broadcast network operator OIV to modernize the country’s national FM radio infrastructure and reduce monthly energy costs for public broadcaster HRT (Croatian Radiotelevision). OIV has upgraded five transmission facilities with GatesAir Flexiva FAX air-cooled radio transmission systems, including sites near the capital city of Zagreb and the towns of Rijeka, Dubrovnik and Makarska. OIV anticipates additional upgrades in the coming years, with a Flexiva FAX system installation planned near the town of Split in 2023.
As HRT’s network operator, OIV manages transmission systems for three national HRT FM radio programs and eight regional HRT programs targeting specific regions. The previous transmitter fleet, which consisted of transmitters up to 20 years old, began showing signs of age in recent years. Furthermore, some vendors were no longer in business, making spare parts hard to procure.
Reducing utility costs and streamlining maintenance
OIV favored a transition to transmitters with modern solid-state technology that would boost efficiency, reduce utility costs, and streamline maintenance. The company says it selected GatesAir as its preferred supplier for the upgrade, citing the company’s longevity, proven reliability and energy-efficient technology. GatesAir’s local partner Smart-AV handled all logistics, including transporting the Flexiva transmitters. Each location includes four or five Flexiva FAX transmitters in redundant 3+1 or 4+1 configurations, with power levels ranging from 5 to 10 kW.
After replacing our old system with GatesAir’s 10kW Flexiva system, our monthly energy consumption dropped by 11,800 kWhBruno Cigrovski, OIV’s head of radio network
Bruno Cigrovski, OIV’s head of radio network, confirms that energy efficiency was an influential driver of the initiative and that the Flexiva transmitters are already paying dividends. “We have done the math for the Flexiva performance at Ucka, which is the transmission site serving listeners in and near the town of Rijeka,” he said. “After replacing our old system with GatesAir’s 10kW Flexiva system, our monthly energy consumption dropped by 11,800 kWh. We are now saving 1500 Euros each month.”
Solving enduring challenges
Cigrovski adds that both GatesAir and Smart-AV have also solved enduring challenges that OIV had faced with cooling higher power systems. “One of our main challenges in Croatia has been effectively cooling higher power transmitters, particularly 10kW systems,” he said. “Smart-AV has provided excellent service and creative insights into properly ventilating high-power transmitters, and GatesAir has really helped us solve that problem with a new generation of high-efficiency transmitters.”
“OIV was especially interested in reducing costs and labor associated with their FM transmitter fleet,” said Ray Miklius, GatesAir’s vice president of EMEA sales and channel programs. “We worked closely with OIV and Smart-AV to build air-cooled systems that aligned perfectly with their various exhaust systems, ensuring that hot air was efficiently moved to the outside of their buildings either through the top roof or through our own air exhaust technology, depending on building designs.