STAR-TV Central Greece DVB-T & RF Network

Who is STAR of Central Greece TV channel?

STAR of Central Greece is one of the largest regional analogue terrestrial TV channels, located in Lamia, Central Greece. Its range covers the central region of Greece. It broadcasts 24 hours a day, 365 days a year various magazine shows, sports, news, movies and series through its own analogue UHF network.

Telmaco has a long relationship with STAR. In 1993, Telmaco was selected as the turnkey system integrator to create the new TV station. Telmaco was selected again for the turnkey project in 2003 to move both the TV and Radio station to a new building with new SDI infrastructure. Telmaco was also selected in 2008 to build their SNG OBVAN for live news and local sports coverage.

Project Description 2010-2011

Due to Digital terrestrial broadcasting regulations in Greece, STAR Central decided to gradually upgrade its network in order to meet the regulations' deadlines.

In 2010, Telmaco was awarded the project of replacing the existing analogue radio links carrying the STAR's program and studio connections to transmission sites. Telmaco was requested to supply, wire, install and commission the new digital Radio links and necessary MPEG encoders/decoders and multiplexers. The architecture decided by the customer was a non-redundant digital turn-around system.

In detail, STAR's headquarters is located in Lamia. The TV transmitters are located on the following mountains: Chlomo, Lihada, Kalamaki and Krikelo. The studios that had to be connected with the headquarters are in the following areas: Karpenisi, Thiva and Livadia.

STAR's Headquarters is in line-of-sight only with the Lihada, Chlomo and Kalamaki sites. The Thiva and Livadia studios are in line-of-sight with Chlomo site only, Karpenisi in line-of-sight with the Krikelo site only, and Krikelo in line-of-sight with the Kalamaki site only.

Design Approach

Two direct-main site connections with STAR headquarters have been agreed: One with the Kalamaki site and the other with the Chlomo site.

A. A bi-directional Digital Link between STAR and Chlomo could satisfy the program forwarding to the Chlomo transmitting site as well as, the return path of other signals. The Chlomo site is the receiving point of both distant studios from Thiva and Livadia through existing analogue links connection. The bi-directional Digital Link mentioned above is capable of routing both studio signals to the Headquarters. A second bi-directional Digital Link transfers the program from Chlomo to the Lihada transmitter site.

B. As above, a bi-directional Digital link between STAR HQ and Kalamaki would establish a connection for program forwarding to the Kalamaki transmitting point and provide the capability to return back to headquarters other signals. A second bi-directional digital Link between Kalamaki and Krikelo is also forwarding the program to Krikelo transmitting site and at the same time is capable of returning back to Kalamaki and then back to the Headquarters, the signal from the Karpenisi studio which is connected to the Krikelo site through an existing analogue Link.


A. Digital Radio Links

The Moseley DTV Link A, a bi-directional digital television radio link at 10GHz band, has been proposed and approved for all cases, with 155Mbps available bandwidth and 30dBm power, considering also the distances to cover between the sites and the bandwidth required. Standard interfaces on this Radio link is 1x DVB-ASI, IP (Ethernet) and T1/E1).

A total of 4+4 complete Tx & Rx radio links supplied to cover the needs of STAR headquarters, Kalamaki, Krikelo, Chlomo and Lihada sites, along with its antenna dishes, filters and the necessary installation material, waveguides, cables etc.

These have been installed and configured by our technicians and engineers according to International standards.

B. Encoders/Decoders Multiplexer

For STAR's program to be compressed and forwarded to transmitting sites, an Ericsson (ex: Tandberg) encoder E5710 has been supplied, featuring as standard 3x ASI outputs. The program is routed into the encoder as an SDI embedded signal and the bit rate of the compressed stream is 8Mbps constant.

One encoder's ASI output is connected to the Radio Link's ASI input for the Chlomo site, while the second ASI output, to the Radio Link's ASI input for the Kalamaki site. The third Encoder's ASI output has been routed to a Tandberg TT1222 decoder for monitoring the encoder's output stream.

At the Chlomo site, a Tandberg TT1222 decoder equipped with 2x switchable ASI/SDI outputs, decodes the program ASI stream and through its PAL and analogue audio outputs, feeds the existing Analogue transmitter, while one of its ASI outputs re-directs the program stream to the ASI-in of the second Radio link towards Lihada transmitting site, where another TT1222 decoder feeds the analogue transmitter with analogue PAL video and audio.

The two studios, Thiva and Livadia are connected with the Chlomo site through existing analogue links (not to be replaced by this project), carrying their analogue A/V signal at the Chlomo site where 2 Screen Service XBT200 encoders have been supplied and installed, which are compressing each of those signals down to 6Mbps and providing 2 separate ASI streams, one for each studio.

In order to return these streams to the Headquarters, a Tandberg MX5210 Multiplexer equipped with a 4xASI input card has been supplied, installed and configured at this site, multiplexing the 2 studio ASI streams and a program return stream into one ASI stream of 30Mbps which is then routed to the ASI-in of the Digital Radio link on the way down to Headquarters.

In STAR Headquarters, a pair of TT1222 decoders, decodes the studio streams and then routing them internally for further processing or broadcasting.

The same architecture is been used with the second connection to STAR Headquarters, the Kalamaki and Krikelo. In this case one only Screen Service XBT200 encoder is being supplied and installed at the Krikelo site, due to the fact that there is only one Studio in the area (Karpenisi), connected to Krikelo site. Therefore, there is no need for Multiplexing at the site currently.

Remote Management

All supplied devices, are featuring Ethernet management capability. All management ports have been connected to existing switches ports and through the existing Ethernet connectivity already established by the customer, a full control and monitoring of the remote devices status, alarms and configuration changing can be performed.

The system was commissioned, and delivered free of problems to the customer. A comprehensive training on the operation of the system has also been carried out.