"Superpower" Grandfathered FM's

D. Smith W9WI - 9 September 1998

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A handful of superpower FM stations exist in Canada. Superpower is not quite as common there for several reasons, including that Class C stations (with a maximum of 100KW power) are authorized throughout the country. I can't explain why a majority of Canadian superpower FMs are in Winnipeg.

ON      London         CFPL-FM 95.9    380,000 100,000 270    C1
MB      Winnipeg       CITI-FM 92.1    350,000 100,000 239    C
MB      Winnipeg       CJKR-FM 97.5    310,000 100,000 70     C
QU      Verdun         CKOI-FM 96.9    307,000 100,000 217    C1
MB      Winnipeg       CBW-FM  98.3    160,000 100,000 223    C

What about superpower TV?
There aren't many. In fact, I can only find one in the United States.

The zone boundaries are roughly similar for TV and FM, except that there is no lower-tower zone ("Zone I-A") in California. The power limits are the same in all zones: 100,000 watts for channels 2-6; 316,000 watts for channels 7-13; (325,000 in Canada) 5,000,000 watts on UHF channels 14-83. The tower height limits do change: 300m (1000') for VHF stations in the lower zone, 600m (2000') for the higher zone. UHF stations may go up to 600m everywhere. (however, the distance separations between stations on the same channel do vary)

WIVB-TV [4] Buffalo, NY is licensed for 100,000 watts at 366m above average terrain. The theoretical power limit for channel 4 at that height should be 67,186 watts, so WIVB is 1.7dB above the limit.

There are seven superpower TVs in Canada:

AB    Edmonton       CFRN-TV    3    609,000   100,000    217
AB    Edmonton       CBXT       5    318,000   100,000    204
AB    Lloydminster   CKSA-TV    2    116,000   100,000    221
AB    Lloydminster   CITL-TV    4    130,000   100,000    221
NF    St. John's     CJON-TV    6    212,800   100,000    250
NS    Sydney         CJCB-TV    4    180,000   100,000    98
QU    Rouyn-Noranda  CFEM-TV   13    346,000   325,000    233

CFRN-TV's power is 7.8dB above what should be allowed on channel 3. In Lloydminster, not only are CKSA-TV and CITL-TV on the same tower - but they're commonly-owned! Such a "dual-stick" operation is legal in Canada, primarily in lightly populated areas where a second choice in over-the-air TV would be unlikely to exist if it had to compete with the existing station.


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