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By | January 12, 2000

      Interspace’s in-depth look at activity on Europe’s transponders

      D – Digital
      A – Analogue

      57 degrees E:
      – RTNC, La Voix du Peuple from Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, left 3798 MHz RHCP temporarily before Christmas. The channel is most likely to be the victim of inadequate uplink equipment rather than a voluntary departure. RTNC has suffered in this way in the past and was off satellite for several months at one time due to equipment failure.

      42 degrees E:
      – With the exception of Star Active Cinema all of the StarDigital channels on 11469 MHz vertical are currently free-to-air. Turkey’s Prima TV has left 10985 MHz vertical and has been replaced by a testcard.

      40 degrees E:
      – It seems that RTS from Serbia has failed once again in its attempt to provide international satellite coverage for its TV and radio service. After its removal from Eutelsat platforms during the Kosovo crisis it found a brief home on Israel’s Amos craft at 4 degrees West. Following strong pressure from the US, Spacecom, the operators of Amos, pulled the plug. In early December 1999 RTS appeared via a Gorizont-31 transponder (11530 MHz RHCP) but by December 22 it had disappeared again.

      36 degrees E:
      Gals-1/2, Most-1, Eutelsat-II-F3
      – The parameters for Sardegna Uno on 12574 MHz horizontal have changed to SR 2222, FEC 3/4. Russian domestic radio station Echo Moskvy, has launched via the Most-1 frequency 12322 MHz RHCP, SR 27500, FEC 3/4, APID 403. Three new Italian independent TV channels have appeared here. Napoli International has launched on 12550 MHz horizontal, SR 3332, FEC 1/2, VPID 4194, APID 4195 in clear MPEG-2. Magic TV is new on 12554 MHz horizontal, SR 3332, FEC 1/2, VPID 4194, APID 4195 and Elefante Telemarket has opened on 12536 MHz horizontal, SR 2498, FEC 2/3, VPID 210, APID 211. The Dutch uplink provider Intrax is using 11022 MHz horizontal, SR 4958, FEC 7/8 occasionally for feed traffic. Intrax previously used the now defunct Eutelsat-I-F5 at 25.5 degrees East.

      28.5 degrees E:
      – Several Millennium news feeds for German broadcasters were in evidence on December 31 12637 MHz vertical, 11575 MHz vertical and 11601 MHz vertical, SR 6111, FEC 3/4, V308, A256 in clear MPEG-2.

      28.2 degrees E:
      Astra-1D & 2A
      – Youth FM, which broadcasts from the Millennium Dome in Greenwich, has started regular programming on 12324 MHz vertical, APID 644, EPG Ch. 935. February 7 has been announced as the official launch date for The Money Channel, which will be joining the Sky Digital line up. The channel will be broadcast from purpose built studios in Wapping, East London. The Money Channel will also be included in the Dream Family Network digital bouquet available via Sirius at 5.2 degrees East. Predictably Music Choice’s Christmas Channel has closed for another season. The audio channel had been available since the end of November on Sky EPG Ch.850.

      26 degrees E:
      Arabsat-2A & 3A
      – The Emirates Channel has started on 12620 MHz vertical in free-to-air MPEG-2.
      A – In addition to the Ku-Band-Band relay, the Emirates Channel launched on January 8 replacing the Emirates Media test pattern on 3989 MHz LHCP. The launch coincided with Muslim festival of Eid, marking the end of Ramadan. Abu Dhabi TV has left 4144 MHz RHCP and has been replaced by a promo video loop promoting Abu Dhabi TV. The same thing has happened on 11840 MHz horizontal and to the MPEG signal from Abu Dhabi on 11767 MHz horizontal.

      19.2 degrees E:
      Astra 1A-C & E-G
      – As expected, QVC Germany has launched its digital service on 12553 MHz vertical, VPID 165, APID 166 in free-to-air MPEG-2. A new French offering, stream sharing with Grand Tourisme and Zap on 12670 MHz vertical, VPID 289, APID 290, is the imaginatively titled Sexy Girls Show which airs nightly from 0000. The three special Christmas audio channels provided by Xtra Music on 12051 MHz vertical have ceased for another year. They are expected to return in late November. Radio Flash FM from Poland has launched within the Wizja bouquet on 11992 MHz horizontal, APID 701 in clear MPEG-2.
      A – Five Swiss ADR channels have launched on the back of BR Alpha at 11686 MHz vertical. They are Swiss Culture & Jazz (7.56 MHz), Virus (7.74 MHz), Swiss Radio International (7.92 MHz), Swiss Pop (8.10 MHz) and Swiss Classic (8.28 MHz). The new German news channel, N24, is testing on 10803 MHz horizontal in clear Pal. The official launch date is January 24. Asian Sound Radio has vacated the 7.38 MHz audio subcarrier on the back of the Disney Channel UK at 11597 MHz vertical.

      16 degrees E:
      – On January 8 live soccer from the Tranmere Rovers-vs-Sunderland game was fed over 11011 MHz horizontal, SR 5632, FEC 3/4, VPID 308, APID 256 in clear MPEG-2.
      A – Following prolonged uplink problems TV Shqiptar from Albania has returned to 11178 MHz vertical in clear Pal. The channel airs from 1730-1930 daily with audio via the 6.50 MHz subcarrier. Radio Tirana can also be found in the audio baseband here at 7.20 MHz. A new Kurdish channel, KurdSat, has been carrying out some tests on 11489 MHz horizontal in clear Pal in the evenings from around 2000. KurdSat is reportedly run by an Iraqi Kurdish group called the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) which states that the channel will launch three hours of daily programmes in January. Hardcore channel Amore TV has ceased D2MAC transmissions because of a lack of interest. Apparently the channel, which was using 11178 MHz vertical, has said that due to the poor uptake for its D2MAC service it has been discontinued for the foreseeable future. Following the launch of their new digital outlet on Hotbird, TV Montenegro have left 11148 MHz vertical where they had been available in Pal.

      13 degrees E:
      Eutelsat Hotbirds 1/2/3/4/5
      – The Jewish J-Channel airs now from 0700-1100 daily on 11027 MHz horizontal. This has allowed HolySat, who are sharing the stream, to increase their output to 20 hours a day (1100-0700). Six new Spanish audio streams, Musica y Noticias (A4401), Musica Ambiental (A4402), Musica Moderna (A4403), Musica Clasica (A4404), Musica en Espanol (A4405) and Musica Melodica (A4406) have started on 12092 MHz horizontal in clear MPEG-2. An Olisat testcard appeared on 12111 MHz vertical, V200, A201 in clear MPEG-2 before Christmas but this has now been replaced by a Fucino testcard. Napoli International has launched on 12303 MHz vertical, VPID 240, APID 241. Also, on the same frequency Magic TV is new on PIDs V245, A246. Both of these channels were previously on 12673 MHz vertical, which they have now left. TV Montenegro started to use 12092 MHz horizontal, VPID 4416, APID 4417 in clear MPEG-2 briefly but has now left. Milan Channel, run by the soccer team AC Milan, is currently free-to-air within the Italian D+ package on 12073 MHz vertical, SR 27500, FEC 3/4. This is the latest in a string of soccer team channels from the likes of Manchester United, Real Madrid and Olympique Marseille. Kuwait Space Channel has left 12380 MHz vertical and has been replaced by a Serte Paris testcard. The channel can still be found within the Arabsat platform on 12654 MHz horizontal. Still with 12654 MHz horizontal, Omdurman Radio from Sudan has left the package. It was until recently available via APID 1622. Skyrock has joined the French TPS bouquet on 10911 MHz vertical via APID 939. It is encoded in Viaccess. All of the radio channels in the TPS package on 10872 MHz vertical are temporarily free-to-air. Porn channel Venus TV on 11027 MHz horizontal has changed parameters. They are now SR 6394, FEC 3/4, VPID 1060, APID 1061. EuroShop is testing on 11027 MHz horizontal, VPID 2081, APID 2082 in clear MPEG-2. Euro Mediterraneo is new on 12520 MHz vertical via PIDs V510, A511 in free-to-air MPEG-2. Another new stream from MTV. MTV Switzerland has launched on 11242 MHz vertical, VPID 169, APID 116. The channel is encoded in Cryptoworks. NRW TV has joined the German digital platform on 11605 MHz horizontal, VPID 160, APID 161. Adjara TV from Georgia has moved from 12380 MHz horizontal to 12245 MHz horizontal, SR 27500, FEC 3/4, VPID 127, APID 137. The channel airs in free-to-air MPEG-2 daily from 1800-2100. In common with the Arabsat feeds, Abu Dhabi TV on 12380 MHz vertical has been replaced by a promo loop.
      A – EuroMix, the new venture from World Radio Network launched officially on December 20. The channel can be heard on the back of Quantum 24 at 10853 MHz horizontal via the 7.74 MHz audio subcarrier and in clear MPEG-2 on 12475 MHz horizontal. This is the first offering from the WRN spin-off European Radio Network (ERN). EuroMix broadcasts current affairs programming in some 18 languages including Bulgarian, Czech, Finnish, Italian, Russian, Slovak, Spanish and Swedish. Programmes are drawn from a pool of international broadcasters like BBC World Service, Radio Vlaanderen Internationaal and Radio Poland. Later this month EuroMax Deutsche is due to be rolled out followed by EuroMax Francaise and EuroMax English.

      10 degrees E:
      – A collection of satellite feeds from several international locations were sighted on 11143 MHz horizontal, SR 5632, FEC 3/4, VPID 33, APID 34 on December 31. The post feed caption identified as "Satlink Millenium". The recipient of this material is unknown.
      A – The Turkish TV channel, Samanyolu TV, has started on 11604 MHz horizontal in clear Pal. The audio is available via the 6.65 MHz audio subcarrier. Two radio stations are present here too. They are Burc FM (7.02/7.20 MHz) and Dunya Radyo (7.74 MHz).

      7 degrees E:
      – Turkey’s Samanyolu TV has left 11685 MHz horizontal (see Eutelsat-II-F4). An Alice promo is broadcasting on 11517 MHz horizontal, VPID 4102, APID 4103 in clear MPEG-2. The new Turkish pay-TV platform, Digiturk, is preparing for its March launch. The package was originally testing on 11596 MHz horizontal, then moved up to 11658 MHz horizontal and has now returned to 11596 MHz. The parameters are SR 30000, FEC 3/4 Aegean beam. Also, Digiturk promos have been present in the last few days on 11658 MHz horizontal via PIDs V640/650, A641/651 in clear MPEG-2. Turkish independent channel, Ege TV, is coming and going on 11694 MHz horizontal, SR 3123, FEC 5/6, Aegean beam.
      A – There are two new customers for W3’s Aegean beam, albeit briefly as they had gone after two days. Show TV launched on 11551 MHz horizontal in clear Pal. In the baseband, apart from the TV audio on 6.60 MHz, there was Show Radyo – 7.02/7.20 MHz, Radyo Mydonose – 7.38/7.56 MHz, Radyo Mega – 7.74 MHz and Tatlises FM – 8.10/8.28 MHz. Up at 11593 MHz horizontal Cine 5 was transponder sharing with Playboy TV in Pal and Nagravision encryption. Turkish Radyo 5 used the 7.74/7.92 MHz subcarriers.

      5 degrees E:
      – Sirius-3 took over from Sirius-1 on January 10. Sirius-3 has been on loan to SES and has been providing back up facilities at 28.2 degrees East. The new craft has identical transponder frequency allocation to the earlier satellites but polarisation is linear instead of circular. The UK version of Bloomberg TV has entered a stream share with Sweden’s TV8 on 12245 MHz in clear MPEG-2, VPID 35, APID 36. Bloomberg airs from 2300-1700 daily.
      A – As with its digital outlet, Bloomberg TV UK is sharing 12437 MHz vertical with TV8 in D2MAC/Eurocrypt.

      0.8 degrees /1 degrees W:
      Thor 1, 2 & 3 & Intelsat-707
      – TV Danmark has been split into two streams. TV Danmark 2 has replaced TV Danmark on 11014 MHz horizontal in Conax encoded MPEG-2 and on 11620 MHz vertical in clear MPEG-2. TV Danmark 1 has launched on 11309 MHz vertical, VPID 1200, APID 1201 in MPEG-2 using Conax encoding. 11685 MHz vertical, SR 3616, FEC 3/4, is sporting a MTV 3 Finland testcard on PIDs V512, A640 in clear MPEG-2 via the Nordic beam.
      A – TV Danmark 2 has taken over from TV Danmark on 11216 MHz vertical in D2MAC/Eurocrypt.

      5 degrees W:
      – The Palestinian Satellite Channel appeared for a couple of days on 11598 MHz horizontal, V308, A256 in free-to-air MPEG-2 but has now left. The programmes were in parallel with the established relay on Nilesat. Occasional feed traffic from Cairo has been sighted on 11598 MHz horizontal, VPID 1005, APID 1205 for Nile News and others. When not in traffic the stream is airing a "Video Cairo Sat" caption. Quite why it is here and not via a Nilesat transponder is a mystery. Also on the same frequency is some occasional feed traffic for Bloomberg TV Espana has been using PIDs V1822, A1832 in addition to a GlobeCast Espana testcard on PIDs V771, A781. La Chaine Berbere (BRTV) has launched on 12585 MHz horizontal in free-to-air MPEG-2 on PIDs V123, A133. France-based BRTV provides programming in the Berber language for Algerian speakers of the language residing in France. It currently airs from 1800-2200 but this will be extended to 1600-2300 in late January. On December 30 at 1000 12585 MHz horizontal, SR 27500, FEC 3/4, VPID 122, APID 132 was displaying this seasonal message "Le Serte & GlobeCast, France Telecom. Best Wishes for Y2K. Vous presentent Meilleurs voeux 2000".

      7 degrees W:
      – LBC Europe from Lebanon has launched an encoded service on 11881 MHz horizontal, VPID 3004, APID 3005.

      8 degrees W:

      – Radio Buffalo from Canada has launched on 12627 MHz horizontal, APID 932 in free-to-air MPEG-2.

      12 degrees W:
      – According to official sources Eutelsat plans to move the now empty Eutelsat-I-F5, which was in inclined orbit at 25.5 degrees East, to this slot to strengthen its "Atlantic Gate" facility. Canal Sur Andalucia has launched on 12521 MHz horizontal, SR 21593, FEC 1/2, VPID 121, APID 131 in clear MPEG-2. In addition, Canal 2 from Andalucia has also started here on VPID 33, APID 769 in clear MPEG. There are two radio channels here too, Canal Sur Radio (A68) and Formula Uno (A770).
      A – The Italian independent channel, Digitaly, has launched another outlet here in addition to its Eutelsat-II-F3 and Hotbird relays. The channel can be found on 12554 MHz horizontal in clear Pal with audio at 6.60 MHz.

      15 degrees W
      – The cable operator UPC has launched two new multiplexes here. On 11120 MHz horizontal, SR 13185, FEC 3/4 there is a copy of the package available on Telstar-11, which contains Film 1, Extreme Sports, UPC Club and Sport 1. At 11141 MHz horizontal, SR 8718, FEC 3/4 you can see Reality TV (VPID 201, APIDs 211-214) and UPC Avante (V401, APIDs 411, 412). All channels in both packages are currently free-to-air but are likely to encode at any time.
      A – A useful beacon for this new craft is the sole analogue signal on 11546MHz vertical in clear NTSC. It comprises of a "Welcome to Telstar-12" caption.

      18 degrees W:
      – Prima TV from Romania has returned to 10978 MHz vertical, SR 6000, FEC 3/4, VPID 1160, APID 1120 in free-to-air MPEG-2. The Rome feeds on 10966 MHz vertical, SR 19193, FEC 3/4 have undergone some parameter changes. There are three streams here on PIDs V33, 36, 40, A34, 37, 41. Amongst other things these streams regularly carry the TeleGiornale news feeds for the Italian networks.

      27.5 degrees W:
      – Eastbound feed traffic from the EBU in New York is using three streams on 11475 MHz vertical, SR 24720, FEC 5/6 in MPEG-2 4:2:2.

      30 degrees W:
      – EFE TV Internacional is testing on 12078 MHz vertical, VPID 36, APID 34, in clear MPEG-2. On December 16 at 1145 12671 MHz vertical, SR 28116, FEC 5/6, VPID 1660, APID 1620 was fired up with a "CNN TORRESPANA" testcard.
      A – On January 3 at 1200 live coverage from a funeral service in Spain was fed over feed transponder 11575 MHz vertical in clear Pal.

      31.5 degrees W:
      – A strange feed appeared on 10973 MHz vertical, SR 5630, FEC 3/4, VPID 308, APID 256, on December 16 at 1135. Firstly a BBC NCA caption was broadcast followed by a report about the MI5 dating back to 1993 complete with the old BBC logo in the top left of the screen. After the feed the stream cut to this caption "BBC NEWS. MFA LONDON. Tel. (020 857) 60707". The EPG data read "LTP DSNG3 RUGBY"!

      All times in UTC unless otherwise stated.
      SR – Symbol Rate
      FEC – Forward Error Correction
      VPID – Video Programme Identifier
      APID – Audio Programme Identifier