Australia Successfully Tests DRM in AM/FM

On Wednesday 29 June 2022, ABC, the public broadcaster, and the Australian network operator BAI hosted a demonstration of Digital Radio Mondiale (DRM) on both AM and FM in Wangaratta, a location in the state of Victoria.

The demonstration was the culmination of almost two years of COVID impacted work to assess the performance of the DRM services on VHF and MF bands.

Senior representatives from the public, commercial and community stations, the regulator and interested parties (ABC, SBS, CBAA, ARN, ACMA, TAB and ACE Radio) travelled to the regional sites to see the facility and more importantly to experience the audio quality available through the DRM signals on both the MF (AM) band from Wangaratta MF and the VHF (FM) band from Mt Baranduda along with all the other advantages DRM provides such as station logos, Text Messages and Journaline.

The attendees visited the MF site at Wangaratta where a simulcast of the AM and DRM services was operating and were able to see the transmission equipment.

At the local Rovers Football club carpark, two vehicles were set up with receivers for stationary listening and demonstrations of the Emergency Warning Functionality (EWF) to “wake-up” the radios.

The third part of the demonstration was drive tests for the attendees to demonstrate the audio quality on the move and the ability to switch between AM, FM and the two DRM signals.

Feedback from the attendees was universally positive.

Two commercial broadcasters advised that they were considering conducting their own DRM transmission testing in the coming months.

The DRM for FM and mediumwave trial also benefitted from the support of the DRM Consortium and some its key members:
NXP, RFmondial, Fraunhofer IIS, Starwaves and Gospell.

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