NAB, CTA launching ATSC 3.0 test station in Cleveland

ATSC 3.0 activities are picking up in Cleveland as the National Association of Broadcasters and the Consumer Technology Association prepare to launch a “living laboratory” in the city.

The NAB has been granted an FCC experimental license to operate a full-power Channel 31 transmission facility using the ATSC 3.0 standard in Cleveland, where the CTA will oversee and manage the station’s activities.

“Just as we collaborated to implement a test station as we led the nation’s transition to digital and HDTV, this partnership will help us test and experiment with this flexible new standard across a variety of applications and with fixed and mobile receivers in a real-world environment,” said CTA President and CEO Gary Shapiro in a statement. “We’re excited to continue our partnership with NAB to take this next critical step toward bringing the many benefits of Next Gen TV to viewers.”

RELATED: The World Series becomes the first live sports ATSC 3.0 broadcast

“This is the place where broadcasters, professional equipment manufacturers, consumer technology companies and other interested parties can work together and experiment with the innovative new standard,” said NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith in a statement. “Our technology team is working on everything from basic transmission to exercising the interactive features of the world’s first IP based broadcast standard. It’s a big effort, and we’re delighted to partner with CTA to enable this work.”

The ATSC 3.0 experimental broadcasts in Cleveland are using the transmitter and broadcast facilities of local Tribune Media-owned Fox affiliate WJW, where next-gen TV broadcast and consumer electronics equipment from more than a dozen different companies is already up and running.

The new full-power station tests in Cleveland come after last year the same station transmitted the first live ATSC 3.0 broadcast of a major professional sporting event—Game 2 of Major League Baseball’s 2016 World Series. Prior to NAB and CTA taking over the test station, early ATSC 3.0 field trials took place there in 2015.

The new announcement regarding ATSC 3.0 testing at the station comes as the FCC is preparing to vote on Nov. 16 regarding a 3.0 draft order.

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