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Study Launched To Boost HD Radio Signal

Washington — The Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) is undertaking a study on how to improve HD Radio coverage without interfering with analog FM stations.

The CPB announced that NPR Labs will conduct the $350,000 study to determine how to boost HD Radio reception so the signal may be stronger indoors for home radio products. Currently, HD Radio stations are broadcasting in both analog and HD Radio with HD Radio set at only 1 percent of the possible power, said an NPR spokeswoman. But, for some consumers, the HD Radio signal at this strength, remains out of range when a radio is taken in doors.

Broadcasters would like to boost the HD Radio signal to 10 percent, but an earlier NPR Labs study found an increase would cause interference with analog FM.

The new study on how to better manage an HD Radio power increase is expected to be completed by the end of the summer in time for the National Association of Broadcaster’s (NAB) Show in Philadelphia in September.

“There’s a great deal of motivation on the part of everyone in the radio industry to solve this problem. I know, once the study is concluded, the desire would be to go the FCC as quickly as possible with a widely supported industry recommendation,” said the NPR spokeswoman.