DRM+ Trial in the UK

The DRM Digital Radio Mondiale standard was extended in 2009 to add an additional mode for operation in the VHF broadcasting bands (known as DRM+), enhancing the established capability of DRM for digital radio services in the bands below 30 MHz.

DRM provides many features to allow user-friendly, high quality radio to be broadcast, including use of station names rather than frequencies, consistent digital audio, additional text and visualisation, an EPG, alternate service signalling, and automatic service following to DRM, DAB, FM and AM services.

After the successful trial in Sri Lanka (November 2010) the DRM Consortium will mount a comprehensive DRM+ trial in the UK. The trial will take place in the Edinburgh area of Scotland in the first quarter of 2011.  Its objectives are:

  • To measure the coverage of DRM+ operating in various transmission modes (lower capacity, higher ruggedness; higher capacity, lower ruggedness);
  • To compare the coverage of FM and DRM+ in terms of transmit power;
  • To assess the impact of DRM+ on FM and vice-versa;
  • To demonstrate the performance of DRM+ in a range of environments throughout the coverage area, for example, urban, suburban, rural, etc., and therefore provide an analysis of performance in the presence of multipath interference, terrain shielding, man-made obstructions, etc., in both strong and weak signal areas;
  • To measure the pattern of the antenna in order to correlate performance in different directions with expected performance;
  • To provide suitable measurement data to international regulatory bodies, such as CEPT and ITU.

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