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Update / Thank You for Your Help!

During the past two months, nearly 300 of our viewers have responded to our various requests for information about their relationship with MiND. We’ve learned a great deal, and we’re happy to share some of the highlights with you. There are several more telephone meetings scheduled, and the survey is still open, so there is still time to add your comments and participate in this important process.

 

Overall, there is no one “most popular” MiND channel. All of the channels available via broadcast and cable are equally popular: MiND’s 5-minute format, NHK World, France24, and RT. Our fifth channel, MHz Worldview, is not as popular because most people watch via cable, and this channel is available only over-the-air.

 

rt_logoNHK_logomhzworldviewlogologoFrance24_logo

 

Most people are aware that the international channels are available via our television channels, and also via the internet. Our viewers appreciate the availability and of these channels as part of their cable channel package. Despite concerns about the cable television industry, few viewers watch over-the-air.

 

The other concerned that was frequently expressed: the domination of news and information by large media companies.. Many people commented about MiND’s channels and programs as an alternative.

 

Overall, the audience for this alternative programming remains quite small. The economics associated with small-scale, alternative public television are not promising. We are continuing to explore the potential of the upcoming FCC Spectrum Auction because it will likely provide significant opportunities for public service media organizations like Independence Media.

 

We encourage you to join us for our next round of public conversations scheduled for Friday, December 19th at 11am and 4pm.  In the case of a large response, overflow calls will be scheduled for 2pm that same day or 11:30am the following Tuesday (December 23rd). If you would like to join us, or set up a time to discuss the issues one-on-one, please email programming.dept@mindtv.org with your name, zip code, and preferred call time or message.

 

Thank you, and enjoy a wonderful holiday season. Our community is grateful for your support.

 

Howard Blumenthal
CEO
Independence Media

Behind the Scenes: Life with a Transmitter

Hey Everyone! We’ve been spending a lot of time down at our transmitter getting it back up to optimal shape. I thought it’d be fun to post some pictures of the action for all to see, so here goes!

TX Cabinet B - E2V IOTThis is our backup transmitter. Both of our transmitters are the Visionary-class IOT (Inductive Output Tube) based transmitters manufactured by Axcera. They operate at roughly 20Kw-22Kw at full power.

TX Fried Beam Supply Board 1TX Fried Beam Supply Board 2These are High Voltage beam supply boards that were damaged delivery of high-voltage power to our transmitter for proper transmission. Note the blue arrows pointing to the scorch marks where the high voltage damaged the boards.

TX Cabinet A High Voltage Power Line FailureThis is a piece of the high voltage wire that runs from the high voltage beam supply (specifically attached to the boards above). This was also damaged during the storm, as when the beam supply boards suffered the arcing and damage it caused the wire to arc in the conduit as well. Note the hole in the insulation of the cabling.

TX Surge Supression BoardsTX Engineer Working on Surge Supression Boards
Surge-Suppression boards (right): These boards protect our transmitter in the event of a sudden surge in power. These boards had to be replaced in both our Primary and our Backup transmitters as they were damaged during the storm.

Here our on-site engineer, Kevin, is replacing the surge-suppression boards in the backup transmitter. (left)

TX Crowbar Assembly TX Thyratron Cooling Fan This is a crowbar assembly (left). The crowbar assembly is used to prevent an over-voltage condition within the transmitter cabinet itself. This particular crowbar assembly utilizes a thyratron tube. The cooling fan (right) went bad in the backup transmitter, causing an intermittent fault in the crowbar assembly. The tube has to remain at a constant temperature in order to work properly, and as a safety measure the transmitter will not operate with out a working crowbar assembly.

TX High Voltage FusesWhen the beam supply boards failed, causing the high voltage cabling to arc in the conduit blowing a hole in the insulation, the fuses for the high-voltage switch were also blown. We had to replace three high-voltage fuses in the main power supply switch that feeds the backup transmitter itself.

TX Flow ControlAfter we replaced all of the faulty equipment that was damaged due to the storms, we had some final tweaks to perform on the coolant system to ensure optimal coolant flow.

TX Cabinet B Full Power TX Cabinet A Full PowerAnd after our unfortunate downtime of almost eleven days total, we have two very happy working transmitters again. I hope that you’ve enjoyed the peak into our world of transmitters, and how truly amazing they are. In a way, they are are just as (if not more) complex than your everyday automobile. Consider all of the parts, their points of failure, and how any one, or a combination of many can mean minimal or prolonged downtime.

Again, thanks to all of our viewers for the kind words, support, offerings of assistance, and most of all, dedication to MiND as we worked through this extremely painful period of our life.