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Dielectric Celebrates 75th Anniversary Heading into the 2017 NAB Show - Radio Magazine

Dielectric Celebrates 75th Anniversary Heading into the 2017 NAB Show

The over-the-air antenna and RF systems pioneer looks forward to a busy transitional period in TV and FM radio with new innovations across products and processes
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RAYMOND, Maine���January 31, 2017���Dielectric, a pioneer in purpose-engineered antennas and RF systems for TV and radio broadcasters,�this year celebrates its 75th�anniversary as the company prepares for brisk business associated with the US TV spectrum repack; and continued global investment in FM radio infrastructure.�

Based in Raymond, Maine in the Sebago Lake region just north of the City of Portland, Dielectric�helped pioneer the broadcast age in 1942. Long regarded as the de facto leader in high-power antenna systems, more recent innovations in RF filtering and low-power TV and FM antennas have helped to sustain and grow Dielectric�s global business, especially in North America, Latin America and the Asia-Pacific.��

The company�s recent growth has taken shape just at the right time, as the industry inches closer to a multi-year transition that will take US TV stations first through the impending spectrum repack; and later through migration to ATSC 3.0. Dielectric recently introduced several new TV products, including its WB�broadband UHF�Antenna and tunable filters for the�repack,�and plans to unveil new systems for ATSC 3.0 preparation prior to the 2017 NAB Show in April.

Dielectric�s experience with the last major over-the-air TV transition in the US�also lends the company an edge heading into the spectrum repack. The company successfully transitioned 1300 broadcasters to DTV beginning in 1994�when the first DTV antenna was installed.

�With the original DTV transition in the US, the floodgates opened shortly after we moved what was formerly the RCA antenna business from New Jersey to Maine in 1994. We�shipped�about 350 antennas a�year�at our peak,� said John Schadler,�Vice�President of engineering, Dielectric. �With the same core group of engineers and support staff on hand, we are well prepared to help our customers through this next period of transition.�

Schadler emphasizes that Dielectric is prepared to do it �smarter� this time around by leveraging advanced software simulations and automation tools to collect design information.

�We are relying more�on these software simulations instead of physically building models and manually taking data,� he said. �On the drafting side, we are using automated,�parametric�software to generate information faster,�more accurately,�and more efficiently. These tools will also help us more quickly accommodate systems for international TV and global FM radio customers, even as we keep pace with repack needs.�

Dielectric�Vice President and�General Manager�Keith Pelletier notes that the company�s recent product designs have been focused on staying ahead of customer needs.

�Certain things about repack can be anticipated ahead of time, and we have put strong initiatives into place to�design and�manufacture�broadband antennas, band�tunable filters and�digiTLine�that can be quickly deployed for new TV channel assignments,� said Pelletier. �And looking forward, we are incorporating technology into our latest antenna designs that will address the higher data rate services, increased signal strength and single-frequency network architectures that will become common with the ATSC 3.0 standard.�

With 2017 representing its 75th�anniversary, Dielectric is now planning a series of events throughout the year to commemorate the milestone, including�local sponsorships, an NAB customer event and an�Employee Appreciation Day. The anniversary and its associated events are especially meaningful for a company that almost faded to black due to a changing industry and a challenging business environment, but survived through sheer will, a supportive new owner, and an unwavering dedication to innovation for the broadcast industry.

�I started at Dielectric in 1994 in the grinding room, which was the lowest entry-level position possible � and was provided the opportunity to grow over the years into my current position,� said Cory Edwards, Dielectric�s�global sales manager, who is also responsible for launching its highly successful Powerlite range of low-power�TV and FM radio�products. �If you look at our longevity, a big reason is that much of our core group today has been here 20 years or longer. Most people who come here, stay here, which has a lot to do with our success. It�s impossible to overstress how important the people here are to Dielectric��s longevity and reputation, and it�s why we continue to attract new customers and retain our existing base worldwide.�

About Dielectric

Based in Raymond, Maine,�Dielectric LLC�is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sinclair. Dielectric is a leading provider of innovative broadcast products. From remote stations to major markets, Dielectric has been delivering solutions for every need since 1942. Dielectric is an innovative, customer-centric organization with a long history of engineering excellence in designing and manufacturing high-quality broadcast solutions. The Company is a trusted partner of broadcasters worldwide. More information can be accessed at�www.dielectric.com

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