Joint SADIBA/NAB Digital Radio DAB+ trial technical update

The South African DAB+ trial will consist of two high power transmitting stations (10kw transmitter power) 100kw ERP situated in Johannesburg and Pretoria in the province of Gauteng. The trial will operate as a SFN in VHF band III on Channel 13F on a frequency of 239.200MHz. This will happen after coverage verification at transmitter powers of 2kw, 5kw, and 10kw. The total area covered by the trial is 21185km2 and the total gross population covered is 10 705 387 (21.5% of total SA population). It is envisaged that between 18 and 20 radio from the Public, Commercial and Community sectors will participate in the trial. The trial will allow the testing of:

  • End-to-end technical functionality
  • Extent of portable mobile coverage
  • Signal permeability
  • Demonstrate digital radio services and value-added services
  • Performance in the field using typical consumer equipment and professional test and measurement equipment.
  • The effects of vehicle penetration loss, building penetration loss and clutter (e.g. buildings and vegetation) on coverage.
  • Testing of the various encoding methods (stereo, para stereo, mono) for different audio types and at different bit rates to get a good understanding of what bit rates/encoding to use for the different program types.
  • Investigate the delivery of PAD within these tests, synchronisation with the audio and rate of change of the images.