CTV: Sackville towers will fall soon

1-IMG_2216(Source: CTV News Atlantic)

The international radio transmission towers that have been a fixture on the Tantramar Marsh for decades are being demolished – a lost landmark to people who live in the area.

[…]Radio Canada International erected the towers in Sackville during the Second World War due to the location, which is far enough from the earth’s magnetic pole and a former salt marsh, which means nothing interferes with the signal.

[…]“The little transmitter huts are gone. The antennas that stretch from tower top to tower top have all been removed,” says Sackville resident Allan Smith. “Now, they’ll systematically take down the towers.”

[…]“It’s an old, old technology in radio, and it’s not really used very much anymore,” says Smith. “But still, in places like the Canadian north and Africa, there are still people that use shortwave systems.”

The teardown is expected to take a few months.

Having visited Sackville and spent time with their staff (who have all been relocated or made redundant), I’m very sad to see such an amazing, modern transmitter site be demolished. Such a waste.

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11 thoughts on “CTV: Sackville towers will fall soon

  1. TP Reitzel

    I find encouraging readers to expend some effort leads to better results. Search for RNZI on the reception forums at http://www.drmrx.org

    Currently, reception of a DRM broadcast with a MSC of 64 QAM will be marginal, though, until the recommended power level for digital broadcasts is increased to 60% of analog on the shortwave bands. Currently, the recommended power level for DRM broadcasts is 40% of analog which is clearly inadequate for a MSC of 64 QAM. Again, DRM isn’t at fault for its slow acceptance, but rather governmental meddling, poor configuration by broadcasters, and inadequate recommendations.

    Good luck. DRM is capable now and will soon will even more capable on the shortwave bands.

  2. Nigel Holmes

    Bollocks. Continental (Texas) & Ampegnon/Thomson/Thales/BBC (Turgi) will sell you a shiny new, high-efficiency hf broadcast transmitter at 100/250/300/500 kW capable of any modulation mode you can name. Several other operations (RIZ, HCJB & others) fill the gap 10-100 kW. RA has a shiny new Continental 418G, Vanuatu & Solomon Islands each have upgraded their domestic hf broadcast services with new 10 kW senders.

  3. TP Reitzel

    Despite the hyperbolic marketing of Digital Radio Mondiale and the failure of the majority of digital broadcasters to employ a Main Service Channel (MSC) of 16 QAM on the shortwave bands, DRM will likely succeed regardless because of its superior technology. As I’ve stated previously, the advent of the xHE-AAC codec will allow better quality of audio at more robust configurations on shortwave. DRM’s popularity on the shortwave bands will continue to steadily grow as more broadcasters employ a MSC of 16 QAM in conjunction with the xHE-AAC codec.

    Despite the premature call of DRM’s death, DRM is still here and growing in popularity.

  4. TP Reitzel

    Personally, I don’t see the unfortunate destruction of this facility as a bad sign. Rather, the destruction of Sackville reflects the inevitable failure of all governmental problems in due time. Private enterprise will void of departing governments. Although, I would have preferred to see a private buyer of Sackville, governments do tend to lavishly waste taxpayer’s money on huge projects to the point where only more taxpayer money can sustain them. The VOA facility in Delano, CA is another example of such governmental excess. Shortwave is simply undergoing a realignment, not a demise.

    1. TP Reitzel

      Rather, the destruction of Sackville reflects the inevitable failure of all governmental programs in due time. Private enterprise will fill the void of departing governments.

      Honestly, the captchas are nearly impossible for humans to read.



      1. TP Reitzel

        Apparently, you’re denying the inevitable failure of all governmental programs with enough time. Governments cause the misallocation of resources. You’re confusing governmental meddling in the marketplace with failure of technologies. Remember CompuServe? I’ll bet that you believe the infrastructure of the InterNet was primarily a product of the marketplace, too. 😉

        In the USA, we currently do NOT have free markets. We have corporatism, a fascist model where governments meddle in markets to the advantage of favored corporations. “Fascism should more appropriately be called corporatism because it is a merger of state and corporate power”. – Mussolini

  5. Steve Rawdon

    What a shame shortwave is on the way out. It makes me so sad after all these years.

  6. Sheldon Harvey

    The mission of Radio-Canada/CBC management will finally be complete. For decades, going back to the first major cuts to RCI in 1991, it has been the the goal of the domestic service of Canada’s management, given the responsibility to look after RCI, to deteriorate the service to a level where no one would care if it was shut down completely. Since the service of RCI was converted on an on-line entity only, I’m surprised that Radio-Canada/CBC didn’t act more quickly to demolish the Sackville site in fear that it might once again rise from the ashes. They know that once Sackville is gone, the possible rebirth of RCI as an international broadcaster is pretty much impossible. Mission accomplished!

  7. W4ASZ

    Modern governments are only interested in tracking and profiling the audiences, even down to the household level.

    This is a shame and a waste, but the towers must be dropped to prevent the return of actual broadcasting from RCI.


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