An excellent primer on the subject, this book gives beginning professionals in satellite newsgathering an introduction to the technologies and processes involved. It will also suit journalists, editors and producers needing to understand this important element of the newsgathering chain.
Written for the complete beginner, the book shows how typical transmission chains work and their communication with the studio. It also offers a brief introduction to analogue and digital theory before going onto to explain Electronic Newsgathering (ENG) systems: from basic principles: transmission and reception chains, frequencies used and why, through to audio channel, subcarriers and digital modulation, as well as applications: radio cameras, window links, infra-red & laser links.
A brief chapter on satellite theory gives an overview of satellite communication and orbits, basic satellite communication theory, transportables (`flyaways') and trucks, as well as analogue vs digital issues, digital compression and MPEG. Systems regulations and operations are also introduced as well as safety and logistics issues.
If you're looking for a quick and easy introduction to the subject, this book will act as an essential on the job reference guide.
Table of Contents
Introduction; Basic overview of the role of ENG/SNG; Definitions; Principal elements in covering an event; Communication with the studio; Analogue theory; The TV Picture; Terrestrial microwave links; Digital modulation in ENG microwave; Transmission and Reception Chains; Antennas; Trucks & masts; Setting up a link; Mid-points; Other microwave link platforms; Radio Cameras; Optical Links; Satellites and orbits; Basic satellite communication theory; Basic digital SNG system; Digital Compression; MPEG; MPEG Picture Problems; Audio compression; Digital modulation in SNG; DSNG Processing Equipment; Link budgets; DSNG Uplink types; Flyaways; Typical flyaway operation; SNG Vehicles; SNG operations - locating the uplink; Co-ordination and Line-up procedures; Automation; Inmarsat and the use of videophones; Video-conferencing and Videophones; Store and Forward; Inmarsat Satphone Operation; Satellite Regulatory Issues; National control and trans-border issues; Licences; Satellite operators; The use of satellite capacity; Operating an SNG Uplink; Safety; Dealing with hazards with microwave equipment; Electrical hazards; Operating ENG pneumatic masts; Manual handling; Driving of vehicles; Operating in hostile environments; Getting in to the war zone; Logistics; On the horizon; Glossary of terms
Jonathan, an independent satellite communications consultant, was formerly the manager of BBC News Location Facilities Unit. He has been very involved in the development of both truck-based and "fly-away" SNG uplinks over the past fifteen years and is also the author of Introduction to SNG and ENG Microwave, also published by Focal Press. Widely regarded as an authority on all aspects of satellite newsgathering, he has published papers, writen articles and given numerous seminars and lectures around the world on the technical aspects of newsgathering.
"...this is a good introductory book, giving an overview of SNG/ENG techniques in about 200 pages." - EBU Tecnhical Review