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Handouts on

OB Coverage for TV


no. 113098A

/From April 18, 2011 / to April 21, 2011

Venue: DDK, Bengaluru


Co-ordinator .. /N.N. Maurya - (.)/ Dy. Director (Engg.)


Training Institute (Technical) /All India Radio & Doordarshan -110009/Kingsway, Delhi-110009


Chapter No.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14

OB Van Systems Planning the Production for OB Coverage Pre-production and Set up Camera aspects in OB coverage Slow Motion Replays Practices & Trends in Vision Mixing for coverage Graphics in Sports Coverage Hawk-eye Technology Picking the sound in OB Coverage Lighting the sports venue Types of OB Van Inside Outside of DDK Ahmedabads OB Van Links for Coverage system OB vehicle design aspect

Page No.
02 07 14 27 36 42 45 54 59 76 84 88 94 113

Chapter 1

A mobile unit often referred to as a remote truck or outside broadcast (OB) van is a mobile television control room. Mobile units come equipped with a video switcher, intercom, graphics, audio, recorder / playback decks and all the engineering equipment required to maintain a quality signal. Remote trucks come in a variety of sizes and are equipped accordingly, many are not even trucks. Although they may be referred to as trucks, mobile units may be trailers, buses, 16m tractor-trailers, RVs, bread trucks or vans. The typical size of a large mobile unit is around 16m long by 2.6 m wide. However, in order to provide more space for the production crew, some trucks are expandable to 6m wide, utilizing a large shelf room that expands out of the main chassis. (See figure.)

Mobile units can be built by specialty manufacturers or assembled by the engineering department of a local television station. The bigger the production, the larger the mobile unit, Figure shows the typical layout of a large remote production truck.

Rear Cable Area

Vision Area

Production Area

Audio Area

Smaller trucks contain similar equipment to that found in the larger mobile units however the quality, quantity, and the equipments capabilities may differ greatly. Large trucks may be able to support 20 cameras while a smaller unit may be able to handle only two or three. In addition, some trucks have multiple slow motion reply machines, while others may not even have that capability. The size of the truck and equipment is based on the end usage. Inside a Mobile Unit / OB Van: The four primary areas of a mobile unit /OB van are production, audio, videotape and video control / transmission. Although layout and size of each of these areas differ from unit to unit, it is essential that each truck include these areas. (See figure)

Production Area: The production area is where the actual production decision is made and the show is created. This area includes the space for the director, producer, and their assistants: the technical director and the switcher: and sometimes the font coordinator, graphics operator and graphics equipment. One of the most significant parts of the production area is the monitor wall. The monitor wall includes the following: Preview monitor (an off-air monitor that allows the director and technical director to preview a video image before going to air) Live or on-air monitor (shows images going on air or to tape) Camera monitors (one for each camera) VTR monitors Graphics monitors Still store monitors Routed monitors Most walls are programmable so that any video device can be routed to any monitor giving directors the freedom to customize the wall to their own liking. (See figure)

A new development in monitor walls is the large high definition flat screen. One virtual monitor wall screen replaces multiple monitors. The director can define the layout of the virtual monitor wall with multiple inputs including a clock, audio levels, analog and digital inputs, and 4:3 / 16:9 aspect ratios. The advantages of these large programmable monitors are that they are compact, light, and consume little power. Audio Area: The audio area includes: Audio mixing board Patch panels Video and audio monitors Sources (such as CD Player) Storage for microphones and patch cables The intercom is also patched in this area. The A-1(Audio First Person) is usually the only person working in this area. Video tape Area: The video tape area includes: VTRs and their remote control units Routing switchers to route various video signals to VTRs Electronic still store (ESS) equipment used to capture, store, manipulate (if needed), and play back still images form video. The ESS can capture a still from any video source, such as camera, videotape or computer and store it on a hard drive. A large ESS system can store thousands of these still images, allowing instant retrieval. Digital disc recorders (DDR), allows the operator to record and play back form the hard drive at the same time and provides instant playback ability

via random access. In fact, some DDRs will record and play back two different sources at the same time. Video Control Area: The video control area includes space for the video operators, camera control units, and test equipment. The goal for the video operators working here is to make sure that the cameras provide the highest quality image possible. Transmission equipment is sometimes included in this area as well.

Communication Devices: Communication at a remote producing is essential. Without it, directors cannot give directions to production personnel, and producers cannot communicate to the talent, graphics and tape operators. Without quality communication, a production will come to a grinding halt. The intercom is one of the most commonly used communication devices. Routed by the A-1, the intercom may have one to eight or more channels. Each channel is patched / routed only to those crew members who need to here that specific channel. Intercoms can be wired to each other, patched to telephone lines or can even be wireless. An interruptible fold back (IFB) system is the type of intercom system used by production personnel to give directions to on-air talent. While talent may be hearing the program in their headsets, the producer can interrupt the program in order to give talent instructions in their headset. Two way radios are essential wireless communication devices that are used by production support, engineering and field production units. These radios allow a

person to move away from the more wire style of communication of the intercom yet remain accessible. Outside a Mobile Unit / OB Van: The outside of the OB unit gives access to large storage areas that are used to transport cameras, tripods, and miscellaneous production gear. The storage space is also used to house the stairways and ladders that allow access to the various truck areas. The other primary area that is on the outside of the mobile unit is the inputs / outputs ( I/O ) panel. This panel is used to patch audio and video in and out of the truck. It generally has a variety of connector types and may even include phone patch blocks.

Chapter 2

Planning the Production for OB Coverage

The planning process is always much more time consuming that the actual production process.in fact, some have started that 99%of a producers time is spent planning or in pre-production,leaving 1% for the actual production process. While the productin process is the most glamourous part of the business, the planning phase is where the majority of the decisions are made. The purpose of the planning process is to review the various available option and prepare a plan that will provide the best television coverage of the event. The plan has to include the technical and productin components. Planning for a small local event may take only a few days, whereas planning for the coverage of the Olympic Games may take four or five years. Creating goals for the production is an important step in the planning process. Once goals are determined, they provide a benchmark that can be used to measure the success of your televidion programm. Accuracy: Be informative while never compromising accuracy. Fairness: Be fair in the coverage. Get both sides of the issues. Be objective. Analysis: Tell why and how things happened. Lend perspective to the events as they unfold. Documentation: Capture the event, including the color, pageantry and excitement. Help the viewer experince the event. Innovate in audio and video to show events form a newperspective. Creativity: Develop story lines. Take the viewer beyond the obvious. Entertain and inform using a variety of methods (graphic, etc.) Consistency: Maintain your level of ambition throughout the season. Do not become complacent. Dont fall victim to patterns that may diminish creativity. Flexibility: Follow established formats, but treat every game as a new event. Co-ordination Meetings: Coordination meetings are essential to the planning phase of a production. These meetings provide a forum for all parties involved in the production to share ideas, communication issues and ensure all details are in line for the production. Coordinatin meetings will involve applicable sports organisations, venue management, television production personnel, and any other party involved in the

production. By organising a pre-competition meeting, each group begins to understand each others role and the issues confronted by each. The meeting allow the various groups to compromise and work together for the best remote coverage. Relationships that are helpful to the production crew when something goes wrong during the event can be forged in these meetings. A coordination session well in advance of the event is absolutely imperative. All parties that may take an active role in the meeting should be present - television with all departments involved, organisers, timing, computers and telecommunications. All demands and wishes should be voiced, discussed and resolved at this early stage. A long report of the planning session keeps all the involved parties informed of decisions. However, even the most careful preparation of the coverage of a one-day event is no insurance for a trouble free show. It is necessary to be ready to act or react if cameras fail, if the computer breaks down, because the show must go on. Remote Survey: The production team generally has a good idea of how the event will be covered. However, until the venue is visited by the survey team, final decisions cannot be made. The survey team is there to assess the venue and determine how, where, how may, who, what and how much. The answers to this question will provide the foundation for the productions planning. A remote survey, or venue survey is generally completed far in advance of the event especially for large scale competitions. For an event such as the Olympic Games, remote surveys may occur four years in advance. A small, local event survey may occur as little as a week in advance. However, unless engineers are fully familiar with the facility, it is essential to complete a detailed survey. Horror stories abound about people who did not check the power supply or look at a venue at the correct time of day. The purpose of the remote survey is: To determine the location for the production. To determine where all production equipment and personnel will be positioned. To determine whether all the productions needs and requirements can be handled at the remote site.

Numerous people who may be involved in the remote survey including the producer, director, EIC or technical person from the remote truck company, site contacts and ideally, the lighting designer and audio engineer. It is important to visit the venue at the same time of day that the event will take place. This allows personnel to assess the lighting, here the sound at that time of day and identify other possible distractions.

The contacts: It is essential to establish who the event / venue contacts are early in the planning phase and how to reach them in case of an emergency. The crew may need access to additional power or restricted areas at any time. In this case, it is essential to be able to contact the appropriate personnel immediately to prevent a complete breakdown in the production. It is important to establish an alternative contact person as well. A contact list should be created identifying as many ways to reach the individuals as possible by office phone, fax, pager, cellular phone, home phone and email. Also important is identifying the appropriate contacts for all aspects of the event venue, hotel, credentials, catering, specialized equipment, mobile unit, electrician, Generator Company, security, golf carts, transportation, officials, satellite provider, phones, uplink truck and possibly even the sanctioning body for the event. Contact list can become long but are necessary and should be distribute to everyone working on the production. Venue Access: Without the correct access to the facility the production can come to a grinding halt. The crew needs access to the venue so they can do their work before, during and after the event. During the planning phase, the following access issues need to be addressed: When does the crew need access? Can they get in very early and stay very late? Is there any procedure for example, a special pass that must be completed in order to move them in or out at or hours? Do they have access to adequate parking? Can they easily get to their positions during the event? Can camera crews move in and out of locations during the actual production of the event? Do engineers have access to cable runs? Make sure that the mobile unit can be driven onto the location, especially if it is of the 15m+ variety. Are there any small bridges, low overpasses or very narrow roads that could cause access problems for large vehicles? Can the access route handle a more than 36,000 Kg. production unit? Where can the mobile unit be parked so that it is close to power, within cable length of your cameras and not blocking traffic? Survey of the Compound: Broadcast Venue Area. The mobile unit may stand by itself at a smaller event, or may reside as just one of the units in a broadcast compound. Compound is the term used to describe the production / technical area at a large event. The compound may include any of the following: One or more mobile units / OB Vans

Technical management and operations, which could include a full mobile shop that has the tools to repair all the equipment while on the road. Support service, which would include the personnel needed to arrange catering, transportation, lodging and other related services, and probably include space for catering to serve meals under cover in case of inclement weather. Transmission facilities and personnel, such as an uplink truck or microwave unit. Temporary offices and meeting rooms for production and technical staff. Temporary trailers that could house post-production equipment, out boarded graphics equipment and / or VTRs Security Generators for primary use or as backup power supply. Toilets.

Safety: The Mobile Unit / OB Van and the Remote Production: Safety during production refers to avoiding any unnecessary risks or danger. Implementing safety procedures and establishing a safe work environment for your crew is one of the fundamental aspects of the production plan. Health and safety must always be considered when working on a remote production. A healthy crew is essential for a successful remote production. Remotes may require more endurance than other production because equipment has to be unloaded form the mobile unit and then placed on the field of play. For example, at an Alpine event the camera crew may need to ski into positions and then stand for hours in freezing weather. Remote production crews may have to set up heavy cameras in freezing or sweltering temperatures or may have to carry equipment up high scaffolding. Most injuries at an event do not happen during the event, they occur from crew members either lifting too much weight or falling before or after the event. When working at a remote production, keep in mind the following aspects of health and safety. Hearing: Some events, such as auto racing, may have very high levels of noise. Crew members should take precautions to protect their hearing by wearing ear plugs or noise-cancelling headsets. Electrical Power: Mobile units require a large amount of electrical power. The truck engineer is the only person who usually deals with that power, especially when hooking up the truck. Normally, no one else should be near the power area. Otherwise, power in the truck is like plugging something in at home. Contact with overhead electric lines can be lethal. Work near overhead power lines must be only undertaken where there is a horizontal safe distance of 30 feet. The safe distance must take into account the reach of camera booms, crane / jibs, ladders and scaffolding. If a radio mast, crane jib, scaffold pole, ladder, camera boom or similar object makes contact with power lines, an electric current can flow that


can cause a risk of fatal or severe shock or burns to any person in the immediate vicinity. This can also occur with objects made from material such as wood or plastic, which are normally regarded as electrical insulators. If damp or dirty, these substances are capable of transmitting sufficient current to cause dangerous or fatal electric shock. Cables: Mobile unit cables need to be protected so that people, cars or equipment do not run or walk on them, wearing the insulation thin or breaking the wires. The cables also need to be secured in such a way that they do not pose a hazard for the crew or visitors. All cable connections need to be protected against the weather by wrapping them in plastic or placing them under cover. In some areas, local codes dictate how cabling is done. Weather: Bad weather can create a problem at any remote production. In remote situations, lighting can strike the truck, cameras or crew members. Freezing weather creates ice, causing hazards for the crew and possibly adding weight to hanging cables. If rain gets into connections the moisture could cause electrical shocks. Heights: Remote production invariably requires crew members to be at high vantage points on the roof of a truck, on scaffolding or climbing somewhere to run cables or hang lights. Precautions need to be taken to ensure that crew members do not fall from these areas. Most injuries on remote sites result from falls. A safety harness should be used when a crew member is in a high area. It is not uncommon for a camera person to concentrate so much on their shot while following a subject that they dont realize they are about to step off the scaffolding. High cranes and microwave transmission masts are other production areas that present height obstacles. When setting up this equipment, it is critical to avoid any power lines. Each year people die from hitting power lines with television remote equipment. Hazardous Areas: Many areas of a remote production can be hazardous and require caution. For example, working as an RF camera operator in the pit of an auto race is a fairly dangerous place. Personnel placed in hazardous areas have to be especially aware of what is going on around them at all times and be prepared to move out of the way of the action when necessary.

Location costs:

Every location has its unique costs it is important to identify what those costs are in advance of the production. Are there costs for crew parking? Does space need to be rented in order to provide the amount of area needed for the production?


Does anything need to be built or modified at the location? Are there any local ordinances that will affect the production? If ordinances limit the production hours or access to the facility, the budget may need to be increased to include additional days. Is additional insurance required by the city or facility? Are there permits that are required by the city, country or facility? Facility management should know what is required. However, it may be worth checking with the local police department and / or fire department to make sure that the necessary permits are in order to park on public property or on a public street. Sometimes permits can take days to process. Are security bonds required by the city, country or facility? What is the cost of housing at this location?

Other Areas for Survey Consideration:

Food / Catering: Who is supplying the food, how many meals are required and where are they going to set up the meals? Lodging: How many rooms are needed and how close are they to the venue? Parking: Is sufficient parking available for rental cars and golf carts? Parking should be marked on the location sketch. Security: Where should guards be? Do they need special parking? Where will they be located in inclement weather? Program transmission: Who will provide transmission service and where will their equipment be located at the venue? Do they have any special needs? Construction: Does anything need to be constructed? If so, is there space allocated for the construction crew to build the required elements? Does the construction have any special needs?


Video and audio feeds: Who needs video and audio feeds outside the mobile unit? Are additional cables needed to meet the requirements? Telephones: How many lines are required? Where the lines should be installed? How many cellular phones are needed? Are any dedicated lines required? Medical: Are there medical facilities at the venue? Is there a hospital within close proximity? Is there a first aid kit nearby for minor injuries? Does an ambulance need to be nearby? If so, where would it be located?

Areas that Significantly Impact the Survey: There are a number of areas that need to be considered for both the remote survey and planning the production. The rest of this chapter will include areas that significantly impact the survey camera, lighting, audio, electrical power, program transmission and backup plans. All of these need to be thought through before completing the location sketch. (a) Cameras / Camera Position (b) Camera placement (c) Types of Cameras (d) Lighting aspects (Indoor / Outdoor) (e) Audio aspects (f) Graphic aspects Electrical Power: Surveying the electrical power on location is essential. It is important to find out if there is sufficient electrical power for all the equipment being used and if anyone else is planning to share the power with you. Engineers should not take anything for granted and must make sure that all electrical outlets actually work. During the electrical survey, it is important to determine the following: Where are the breakers? How will the crew access them? How many extension cords are needed? Is a portable generator needed? If sure power (power on site) is available, is a generator needed for redundancy?


Chapter 3

Pre-production and Set-up

Following points to be prepared before production:
(a) (b) (c) (d) Cabling Equipment Set-up. Setting up Cameras. Production / Technical meeting.

(a) Cabling: Cables used in television broadcasting vary from simple coaxial configurations to very complex multi-core cables. Triax cable is used by most mobile units / vans. Fiber optic cable is frequently used to carry signals over long distances with minimum degradation. There is also a variety of cable connectors used in remote television production.

The following is a list of things to keep in mind when cabling: 1. Run cables neatly and, if possible, parallel. Try to group them together so the cable run is obvious and well defined. Lay cables as close to the production truck as possible so that the production crew will not trip or continuously walk on them. 2. When running camera cable, make sure that the correct end is toward the camera. 3. Cable connectors must be protected from the elements to ensure signal quality. If a cable connector must be exposed to the elements, try to support the connector so it is hanging downward or, preferably, wrap it with plastic and tape it. However, only tape the plastic on the top end, allowing air to come in underneath to prevent condensation in and on the connector. Do not allow the ends of cables to lie where water may puddle in the event of rain or melting snow. 4. Label all cables, for example, Cam-1. 5. Report damaged cable to the supervisor. It is far easier to solve problems in the cabling phase than try to troubleshoot the problem during a competition. 6. Excess cable should be placed on the ground in a figure eight pattern or the over-and-under method so that the cable will not kink or tangle. A knotted cable can cause significant stress and subsequently irreparable damage to the cable.


7. Do not run a cable around any object that requires a tight bending radius. An extremely tight bend could damage the cable. 8. Avoid running video and audio cable close, and parallel, to power cables since these cables may be subject to a buzz. Video and audio cables that must cross over power cables should do so at 90-degree angle to minimize the impact of the power on the video and audio signals. 9. Do not suspend tightly stretched cables between two points for much of a distance. Cables must be supported to ensure the cable is not damaged due to tension. Cables should be pulled and supported by the cable, not the connectors.

(Lemo Triax Connector)

(Fischer Triax connector)

(Lemo HDTV Triax connector)


Different Types of connectors


(b) Equipment Set-Up: The equipment set-up (ESU) time varies from under a day for a small event to more than a week for larger, more complicated event. Other factors that determine the ESU is the complexity of the terrain (alpine event), whether the venue is pre-cabled and the size of the set-up crew. The ESU includes running all audio and video cables and the transport and set-up of cameras, monitors and all audio equipment. During set-up, the crew should always keep the strike (tear down) in mind. Equipment and cables should be removed from the truck and placed such that it will be easy to put them away after the shoot.

(c) Setting up a Camera: Set up the tripod or other type of camera support. Check that the pan / tilt head is firmly attached to the mount. Level the tripod and pan / tilt head. Check that the pan / tilt head is locked. Attach the camera to the head. There are three basic ways to attach the camera: screws, wedge plate or quick release plate. Adjust the center of gravity of the camera on the tripod. Check the friction adjustments for the pan and tilt. These should be set at your comfort level. Make sure that the lens is tightly mounted on the head. Set the zoon controls at the right speed. Test the focus control to make sure that it is working. Attach the camera to the CCU cable and power up the camera. Check the monitor and adjust the contrast and brightness. Check the back focus to ensure that the image stays in focus from long shots to close-ups. Attach the intercom headset and test to make sure that it is working. If everything appears to be working on your end, wait for further instructions from the mobile unit. Make sure the appropriate filter is set. Color Correction Filters: o 5600K outdoor in daylight or indoors utilizing a lighting source that simulates daylight (Generally includes fluorescent lighting.) o 3200K tungsten lighting ( indoor) Neutral Density Filters: o ND-1 reduces light by one f-stop. o ND-2 reduces light by two f-stops.


Make sure that the camera is color balanced. This may include setting up the appropriate test chart and selecting the correct filter. When the camera is not in use, the front lens cap should be left on the camera.

Familiarize yourself with the weather gear so you can put it on or take it off easily. If the weather looks as though it might get bad, put the weather gear on before the production begins. It is difficult to put weather gear on the camera during the production.
(e) Production/Technical Meetings:

Pre-production or production meetings are an integral part of the production process. Usually run by the producer, these meetings should include representatives from each area including: Director Talent Art director Production assistant Engineering supervisor

These meetings are designed to provide an overall vision of the production, receive feedback from the participants, determine how they may be impacted by production decisions and discuss deadlines and budgets. Production meeting frequency depends ion the event. For the Olympic Games, production meetings may actually begin four years before the actual production. A local station covering a regularly scheduled event may meet the week or day before the event. Networks sometimes have tow meetings each day the week before a large event in order to allow the producer to keep up with the various components of the production. The show Format: Scripted pre-game shows allow a producer and director to create a detailed format that gives a shot-by-shot and second- by-second description of the entire show. These formats seem to have a life of their own, evolving through a number of versions. The formats generally specify: Image source (videotape, graphic or on-camera). Audio source (sound on tape, live ambience or live talent). Description of image (talent who will be on camera, image content and location). Segment time. Total elapsed time. The program format lets each crew member know their responsibilities throughout the pregame show, allowing them to anticipate the action and reduces


the number of instructions the producer and director need to give over the intercom. The format also helps RF camera operators and talent, who may need to move from one location to another. Camera Position: A major function of the technical preparation is to determine where cameras are going to be placed at the venue. Camera placement needs to be determined early since many other decisions are based on it, such as where the cabling will be run or if the venue is already cabled, the number of days it will take to set up, the coverage plan, and any additional facilities that will be needed. Here are some of the questions that need to be addressed about cameras and their associated equipment. If a dolly is needed for a mobile camera, what kind is required? What is the ground / floor like where the dolly will be located? Is the ground level? How many cameras are required to give adequate coverage of the events? What type of camera should be used in each position (fixed, tracing, ENG, etc.)? Where can camera cables be run? Will cables be protected from people, cars, weather etc.? What kind of camera mounting devices, platforms of scaffolding are need? Are any special lenses required? If cranes or jibs are needed, where can they be placed with maximum action radius?


Camera placement: A number of factors should be taken into consideration when placing cameras. For example, camera cannot be placed on opposite sides of the field of play except for isolation (ISO) camera. Other questions that should be asked when determining camera placement include: Where can cameras be placed that provide the best coverage for both action and isolation coverage? Make sure that you can provide the necessary wide shot of the event. What locations provide the best lighting? Where is the sun located at an outdoor event? The angle of the sun will be a factor when determining the angle from which to capture the event. Cameras should be positioned with the sun behind them. Are there signs or billboards in the background of this shot that could be distracting? Will anything be changed on the day of the event that could become a distraction? Will cameras block the spectators view? What locations are available that is not in view of the other cameras? Does anything obscure the camera shot required by the director? If so, can anything be done about it?


Probable cameras position for the different games:


Probable cameras position for the different games:


Probable cameras position for the different games:


Probable cameras position for the different games:


Different Cameras:


Different Cameras:


Chapter 4

Camera Aspects in OB Coverage

Types of Cameras: A variety of cameras are used in OB sports productions. The following list gives as overview of the types of cameras that are currently available.

Fixed or Hard Camera: A camera that is mounted on a camera mount in a fixed position. These are generally large, heavy cameras that can be equipped with long telephoto lenses and require extremely stable built up platforms to prevent shaky shots. The larger cameras provide the operator with a larger monitor as well as more control on the camera head. The camera mount may be stationary or it may have wheels. Walking or climbing on these camera platforms / scaffolds should be avoided (See figure)

Hand Held Camera: A camera held by the camera operator. (see figure) These cameras are much smaller than hard cameras, making them more portable and easy to reposition. They can be used as part of a multi camera production or docked with a


recorder so that they become an ENG camera. Generally this camera would include an RF transmitter that would be handled by an RF assistant.

Tracking or Rail Camera:

A camera that follows the motion of the object it is shooting. These can be automated or manually controlled. They are amounted on rails or other devices allowing them to synchronize movement with the subject. It is easier to repeat shots accurately using a tracing camera because the track does not move. These cameras are extremely stable, silent, and can be moved safely at slow or fast speeds. Tracks and rails can be curved or straight. (See figures)

Moby cam: Manufacturer name for an underwater remote controlled camera that can move underwater along the length of a swimming pool.


(Image taken by Moby cam)

Camera Crane / Jib: A camera crane or jib is used to move a camera (and sometimes operator) to high, medium and low shots. A crane movement is when the camera is moved up, down or side to side. Cranes have become very popular for their ability to give a production a special vantage point at an affordable price. They are also transportable when broken down into cases. Cranes are generally operated by one or two assistants and a camera operator. (See figure)

Mini Point of View (POV) Camera: This camera is used when space is limited, restricted or when it is not essential to use a camera operator. As a point of view camera, the mini camera is often


placed in unusual positions to give the effect of being part of the action or competition. These cameras can be set in a fixed position or remote pan / tilt controlled. POV cameras provide a unique vantage point for the viewer, such as attached to football goal posts or underwater for swimming competitions. These cameras are usually reasonably inexpensive (often placed in hazardous positions where they may be damaged), rugged, very small, and have average technical specifications. They are sometimes called lipstick cameras due to their shape and size. The camera is operated from a remote location. (See figure)

(Image taken by POV cam)


Slow Motion / Super Slow Motion Camera: These television cameras have special capabilities which capture high quality slow motion images with reduced blurring. Standard slow motion is 25 frames per second. Super slow motion records 75 frames per second. Which further reduces the speed of the action with less blurring? Steadicam: A device designed to stabilize a camera. The camera is attached to a special vest, which is worn by the camera operator. An accomplished Steadicam operator has the freedom to walk or run and still provides fluid shots. Steadicam at large events generally are attached to an RF transmitter allowing totally wireless operation. Steadicam is the brand name of the most popular body stabilized camera support. There are other brands available as well.


Skycam or Cablecam: Manufacturer names for cameras that hang from a system of cables over a venue. The camera is then remote controlled to cover different locations within the venue. The controls for the camera also included remote pan at tilt. (See figure)

Pole Camera: A small camera attached to a long pole. The pole can be attached to a camera support or to a belt / strap on the camera operator. The advantage of this camera is that it has a very portable jib arm that can obtain high or low angle shots. It can also be used to obtain above and underwater shots. (See figure)


Stabilized Camera: A camera that is equipped with a stabilization system such as a gyro, optical stabilizer, digital stabilizer or counter balance of some type. These cameras are often used with helicopters, boats or other moving camera mounts.

RF Camera: Any wireless camera that uses radio frequencies to transmit the video signal. Prior to the actual production, RF camera operators must complete a walkthrough wherever they will be going during the broadcast. The reason for this is to find dead spots or areas that are not conducive to a quality video signal.

Motocam: A motorcycle equipped with a stabilized television camera and RF transmitter. (See figure)


Vehicle Camera: A vehicle equipped with a stabilized camera and RF transmitter. Boatcam: A boat that is equipped with a stabilized television camera and RF transmitter.

Helicam: A helicopter that is outfitted with a stabilized, remote-controlled television camera. Generally the helicopter is also equipped with a microwave transmitter. These


cameras can be mounted on full size helicopters or can be carried by small remote-controlled helicopters. (See figure)

Electronic Field Production Camera (EFP): An EFP camera is a lightweight camcorder that is not connected to the mobile unit. These cameras are used for the production of news stories or short reports. They are used for immediate post-production and editing, but the pictures could also be transmitted live from the field. Why POV / Robotic Cameras? Many of the cameras previously mentioned are robotically controlled. These cameras have become increasingly popular in the production of sporting events. They are used when: It is impossible to fit a camera and operator into a location. It may not be physically safe to have camera operator present for example, a POV used under a jump at an equestrian event. A unique perspective contributes to a viewers overall understanding of an event for example, a POV camera in a hockey net.


Chapter 5

Slow Motion Replays

Slow motion replays are now widely accepted as an integral part of television sports coverage. Indeed, many sports now rely on these replays to help game officials judge close plays and questionable calls. To create a slow-motion replay which appears smooth, it is necessary to have a camera and a recording system which is capable of shooting faster than the normal 50 or 60 fields or frames per second rate. Capturing more pictures than normal then playing those out at the standard speed gives you smooth motion at a reduced speed of action rate. Live Slow motion server: LSM used for slow motion action replay in sports coverage. These servers are come in different hardware and software configuration with variety of different operational capabilities. Slow motion servers have typically 4/6/8 channel capability. These systems has instant access server capable of simultaneous recording and playback. The recording process runs on a multiple channels, in continuous "loop-mode": When the disks are full, the oldest frames are over-written. The remaining playback channels are used at the same time to search, cue and replay the best scenes, at any speed and without interrupting the recording process at any time. Playback can commence instantly, without the need for the operator to place any cue-makings. The operator uses "in" and "out" points only to mark the scenes that are to be preserved. Servers are compatible with all normal and super (slow) motion cameras. Slow motion cameras scan images at 3 times the normal rate (150 fields / sec in Pal). The increased temporal resolution obtained this way enables slow motion replays of unequalled smoothness. The individual frames are also much sharper; they suffer less from motion blur, because of the shorter exposure time. Super motion technology reveals details to the television spectators, invisible to the naked eye.


Some Features of servers 1) Editing Some servers are efficient nonlinear editor, operational during the recording of live event. Intuitive cut paste functionality makes Play List editing very fast and features mix & wipe effects.

2) Live Production Network Servers can be networked to become a fully integrated production environment for sports or other live events. Any clip, recorded by any device on the network, is available INSTANTLY for editing or play out to all operators, even while the recording process of that particular clip is still in progress. Design Aspect of Super Slow motion Camera (HD) The thinking behind the development of the super slow motion camera which set the standard for live, super slow-motion system, or super slow-mo. These camera shot at three times normal speed, producing 75 or 90 frames a second depending on video format, giving perfect motion at one-third normal speed, for 3X super slow-mo. The important point here is that the technology existed for this to happen within a live production without complex processing or delay. With a special super slowmotion server, the 3X output could be recorded, then played back instantly at variable speeds. The recording could go on indefinitely; normally super slow-mo server channels are permanently recording, capturing the entire game. Without this approach, viewers had to put up with jerky motion, or there was a significant delay while complex processing and rendering took place to estimate the in-between pictures. This did not produce satisfactory results and was of no practical value in the world of fast action sports because of the processing delay.


Today the broadcast market sees a number of very high-speed cameras: speeds as high as a million frames a second have been quoted. But these are limited to very short recording durations a fraction of a second in the case of the highest speeds and the outputs need to be downloaded and processed before they can be used. This makes them attractive for very specialized shots, but not a practical proposition for live applications. Sports broadcasters are accustomed to the idea of 3X super slow-mo, and directors routinely call for replays instantly. They are an established part of the language of televised sports productions. There is a significant demand for an HD super slow-mo system. The development of such a camera, though, faces a number of technical demands if it is to meet the uncompromised quality standards that viewers expect of HD. It is also very difficult to create smooth slow-motion in interlaced formats, and this is an issue that broadcasters have to address. (a) Signal-to-Noise Ratio The majority of high-end professional television cameras use three 2/3-inch CCDs as its image sensors, with CMOS sensors beginning to make their appearance. In this context it does not matter whether the imager is CCD or CMOS, though, as both achieve the same end result. The imager sensor is a chip on which there are a large number of photo sites. These photo sites convert light energy into electrical energy: they collect photons falling on the photo site and output a signal which is proportional to the number of photons collected. In the imagers output amplifier, the signal charges will be converted into a proportional output voltage. The output voltage from the imager is extremely low, and has to be immediately amplified before being converted from analog to digital for downstream processing (all imager sensors are analog devices). The imager output is directly proportional to the amount of light falling on it, but it is also directly proportional to the length of time that it is exposed to that light. It is counting photons: if you reduce the time that you are counting photons then of course you reduce the number of photons which hit the imager. Shooting at three times the normal frame rate means that the imager is exposed for one-third of the normal time for each frame. This reduces the total amount of light on the image sensor, and the output from the imager degrading the signal-to-noise ratio at the front end of the camera. One possible solution would be to use a special imager, developed with low signal-to-noise as its primary design requirement. The disadvantage of this would be that its pictures would not visually match the other standard-speed broadcast cameras being used during the event. This would probably be unacceptable even if the output of the camera was only used for slow-motion replays. But in practical situations, the super slow-mo camera is used as part of the broadcast program and differences in image quality, certainly in HD, would not be tolerable.


Furthermore, having a standard-speed camera alongside the super slow-mo camera is not an acceptable solution either. The additional capital and operational costs of camera, cable, and operator would add to the production budget, and in many sports applications there is only one perfect spot for the camera, not two spots side-by-side. (b) Data Rate It is well known that uncompressed HD, as 720p or 1080i, has a data rate of 1.5 Gb/s. However, if you are shooting at three times the normal frame rate, you are faced with a data rate of 4.5 Gb/s. To accommodate this data rate special fiber system is required. The base station of the camera is also required special design to unpack the triple frame rate video (for 3X speed), carry out the necessary processing, to offer the output HD-SDI signals to an external recording device (c) Flicker When sporting events are played under artificial lighting, there is another important issue to consider: flicker. While the eye automatically integrates the output of many different types of artificial lighting so that the level appears constant, they remain cycling with the mains power frequency. Typically this is not an issue with television cameras either: a 50 or 60 fields per second camera under 50 or 60 Hz lighting, respectively, will always receive the same amount of light effectively integrating the illumination over a complete cycle - so the picture will appear stable. As the diagram below shows, this is the case even if the lighting and the cameras are not synchronized: provided they are operating at the same frequency, the light will be integrated over a field of the video to provide a constant level of illumination.


Ultra Motion Camera in Sports Coverage:

Hi-Motion was designed to operate and integrate like a standard camera. With the universally-standard B4 lens and recording at 12 to 300 fps and now 600 fps, Hi-Motion is easily integrated into any normal Outside Broadcast workflow with the slow motion server. The dramatic, clear, slowed-down footage from Hi-Motion is often used as replay footage directly following an event or incident in main coverage. Hi-Motion also provides detail and insight for analysis and artistic purposes.

Based on the new control capabilities provided b y server system, live sport operators are now offered the ability to manage 100% of their hyper motion record, slow-motion replays and clipping actions from Remote controller of server. Key features of server associated with Hi-motion Camera Full Hi-Motion live slow motion replay control No rendering for replay Up to 600 frame per second sequences replays Full control through Remote controller No dedicated operator required No extra-material required


Extra motion Camera specification ASPECT RATIO LENS MOUNT FRAME RATES RESOLUTION RECORDING TIME PLAYBACK VIDEO OUTPUT POWER 16:9 B4 12 - 300, and 600fps 1920 x 1080 22 seconds at 300fps & at 600fps, pro-rata at other frame rates From still to 300fps HD SDI 110 - 220V AC


Chapter 6 Practices & Trends in Vision mixing for Coverage

Vision Mixers work across all genres of television programmes, which are either transmitted live, recorded as live, or pre-recorded in any multi-camera environment in studios or during Outside Broadcasts (OBs). These include news, sport, current affairs, light entertainment, one-off studio-based dramas, children's programmes, situation comedies, and soaps or serial dramas. On studio-based programmes, Vision Mixers work in the Production Gallery, on OBs they are based in the mobile Production Gallery in the OB vehicle. Vision Mixers edit programmes live (as they are being transmitted or recorded), using a variety of transition methods, such as cuts, mixes, wipes, frame manipulation, etc. They join together images from various visual sources, including cameras, video tape recorders (VTR Machines), graphic generators, digital video effects (DVEs). They are the Director's "second pair of eyes" in the Gallery. The work is exhilarating but demanding, and requires patience, stamina and resilience. Vision Mixers may be employed by broadcasters, or work on a freelance basis.

On sport coverage, current affairs, or light entertainment programming, Vision Mixers work initially from running orders, usually prepared by Producers, which outline the premise of each programme, and detail the shot requirements. Vision Mixers then work closely with Directors to creatively interpret the script, discussing which transitions are required from shot to shot, whether and when


visual effects and/or graphics should be used, and suggesting alternatives where certain transitions are impossible, or to improve the creative output. Vision Mixers must be aware of the capabilities and limitations of different vision mixing desks, and suggest ways of using them to fulfill the Director's vision for each production. During recording, or live transmission, Vision Mixers work with the Director to visually create the programme. Vision Mixers must be able to multi task effectively, as they may be required to cut from shot to shot during a live interview while simultaneously absorbing the Producer's instructions to the Director about the next item to be transmitted, and the sources to be used, setting up the next transition on the effects bank, and also listening to the Production Assistant's (PA's) countdown to the next item. As running orders on news programmes can literally change by the second, Vision Mixers must be able to react quickly and accurately to rapidly changing demands. They often work from more than one visual source, for example when adding graphics with the required name, location and date, to relevant shots. On these types of production, Vision Mixers have more autonomy than on more structured, rehearsed programming. On some light entertainment, and all sitcoms, soaps and drama, Vision Mixers use rehearsals to practice the required transitions, and where appropriate to suggest alternatives to Directors. Vision Mixers make detailed notes on the camera script about required sources, transition types, graphics and technical effects. Although they work from a script, during recording Directors may give standby cues to Vision Mixers and Cameras about upcoming transitions. On music programming, Vision Mixers are given more latitude and must cut to the music or beat, or often to a musical score, particularly when working on classical music productions. On live productions Vision Mixers are required to react quickly when problems arise, for example by cutting to another suitable source smoothly and calmly if the required camera is refocusing, or in the wrong position. On especially complicated productions, particularly in light entertainment, two vision mixers may work together: one vision mixing, the other operating all peripheral equipment, such as Stills Store, DVE, hard disc / VT play. In the first instance, more dynamism has meant more camera angles, and the evolutionary path for production switchers has been toward larger vision mixing consoles with an ever increasing number of inputs. From relatively small consoles, production switchers for sports events have grown to the point where they take up a large amount of space in production area of OB trucks, and we are probably at the point where control surfaces have reached their maximum practical size. It's not just more and more camera angles, though, that's driving the need for more inputs. The real revolution has been in the use of graphics, which have evolved in a short time from relatively simple two-dimensional, plain text representations of the score to flying 3D animated transitions that are now an


important part of TV networks branding. These also require large numbers of inputs. Beyond creating the need for more inputs, intensive use of graphics is making switcher automation and on-board video storage more desirable features for sports broadcasting than ever. Programmable macros are now available on most production switchers, allowing a series of keystrokes to be executed with a single touch on certain buttons or, in some cases, on any button. When it comes to video storage, the switcher industry has been slower in providing the level of on-board resources that a vision mixer might like to have in order to eliminate the need for external twin disc recorders to provide 3D transitions. Some production switcher, which offers twelve seconds storage in HD or about 60 seconds in SD for each of its 4 M/Es, for a total of 48 seconds of uncompressed HD and 240 seconds of uncompressed SD--quite a reasonable amount of room for key and fill elements. Each of the M/Es provides a set of programmable function keys that provide one-button control to run these 'flying keys, what the viewer might see as a transition into a replay or a transition wipe. Some switcher also lets you attach a Macro to any button on the switcher. Timelines, and the ability to store a realistic amount of video, to create flying keys from the switcher--Switcher will draw attention which having ability to accept both SD and HD sources simultaneously and to allow you to mix or cut between them, without any intermediate conversion step. This is a feature that pays off in a big way in HD sportscasts, for example when incorporating an SD camera feed into an HD programme or superimposing an SD graphic over live HD action. This functionality not only saves costs for the broadcaster, it also greatly enhances the live production workflow. Very soon, this capability is going to be a virtual requirement for any production switcher used in sports applications.


Chapter 7

Graphics In Sports Coverage

Graphics: First impressions are important .And the first impressions the audience gets from your production may come from the opening graphics. They help set the style and ambience of the program; they inform; they guide. Well designed graphics make a direct contribution to the success of any production. Poorly designed graphics immediately discredit the entire production. Graphics dont have to be elaborate-they just need to clearly communicate, and help grab the audiences attention. However, they do need to be brief, clear, and appropriate in style. Effective television graphics require the graphic operator or designer to think through a number of stages in the production process: How does this graphic help the audience understand the subject or story better? What is the purpose or goal of the graphic? Would words, illustrations, photographs, or video imagery work best to communicate to this audience?

GRAPHIC GOAL Television graphics should: Convey information clearly and directly. They should be prepared for maximum communication impact. This means that television graphics should be simply created, not elaborate. Because television graphics move quickly and cannot be studied for a long period of time, the font should be bold and straightforward.


Establish the shows overall mood and tone through the graphic style. The font and presentation style can do much to advance the story being told. These can set the scene for the rest of the program. Present fact, concept, or processes visually so that the viewer will understand the program content. Keeps the graphic s organized and presented in a way that holds the audiences attention and makes it simple for them to follow the process or to understand the concept being presented? Aim to keep graphic information to a minimum, particularly if it is combined with a detailed background. A screen full of written information can be daunting to most viewers and tiring to read. People are easily discouraged from reading rapid graphics. Leave information on the screen long enough to allow it to be read aloud twice, so that even the slowest reader can assimilate it. Types of Graphics: Graphics add clarity to a shows presentation. They are used to announce the place or time, to identify a plant, to display data, to clarify how food should be cooked, and so on. There are a number of different types of graphics: Opening titles announce the show. Subtitles identify people and places. Credits recognize those appearing in and contributing to the program. End titles draw the program to its conclusion.


FORMS OF GRAPHICS: Graphics can make a valuable contribution to all types of television program: Statistical graphics in the form of bar graphs and charts can show, in a moment, information that would be hidden in columns of figures. They enable you to simplify complex data, to compare, to show developments, to demonstrate relationships, and so on. Pictorial graphics can be used to illustrate a childrens story, to set the scene in a drama, to explain scientific principles, to provide an atmospheric background to tilting, and so on. Animated Graphics: Animation can bring a graphic to life. Even the simplest movement, such as panning over it from one detail to another, zooming in/out on details, or cutting between sections of it, can sustain interest in what would otherwise be a static display. Such techniques are an effective way of illustrating a documentary, or any program that relies heavily on graphics and photographs (or maps or paintings in historical sequences). Animation can take place in a number of different ways. For instance, you can build a graphic on the air by progressively adding details or sections. Character generators can usually save the animation, which can be replayed at a later time. Interactive 3D Graphics: There are number of interactive three-dimensional (3D) graphics that are used to help the audience understand situations and hold their attention. One example is sports production. Some of the networks are creating 3D characters, which represent actual players, to illustrate the various plays in sports. The goal of these graphics is to illustrate the nuances and variations in a play that have occurred or has occurred. DESIGNING GRAPHICS: Video and television productions today may use either of two screen formats. Standard-definition television (SDTV) has an aspect ratio of 4:3. High-definition television (HDTV) has an aspect ratio of 16:9. If viewers have both type of formats, all graphics need to be designed so that they fall into the 4:3 area. Otherwise, 16:9 viewers may not be able to see important graphics. Some things to consider when designing graphics are as follows: Keep titling well away from the edge of the frame to avoid edge cutoff. Graphics should be designed so that they fall within the middle 80 percent of televisions scanning area. This center area of the screen is referred to as the safe title area


Simple, bold typefaces are best. Avoid thin-lined, elaborate lettering. Although HDTVs resolution can handle the thin lines, the majority of the world is still in SDTV, which struggles with thin lines. Limit the number of different fonts within a program. Lettering smaller than about 1/10 screen height is difficult to read. It is important for director to determine what media the audience will use to see the final production, or at least what the dominant media will be. Outlining and drop shadows often makes lettering easier to read by preventing bleeding and providing contras. However, avoid placing a black edged outline around smaller letters, because it becomes hard to read. The holes in the letters B, O, A and R tend to fill in. Punctuation is not normally used, except in the following instances: quotations, hyphens, apostrophes, possessives, and names. Abbreviations are never punctuated on television graphics. However, if abbreviations make the title ambiguous, use three lines if necessary and spell out the words. Leave a space between titles lines of around 1/2 to 2/3 the height of the capital letters. Lettering should generally contrast strongly with its background. The lettering is usually much lighter than the background. Dont fill the screen with too much information at a time. It is often better to use a series of brief frames or to use a crawl (continuous information moving vertically into the frame and passing out at the top). Warm bright colors will attract the most attention.


Backgrounds for Graphics: Choosing suitable background for a graphic can be as important as the foreground graphic. When creating full-screen graphics, graphic operator need to be careful when choosing graphic backgrounds. If the wrong background is used, it may compete for attention with the graphic. For example, dont use a sharply focused shot of a group of people in the background. Viewers will look through the words and look at the people. There are a number of different strategies that can be successfully used for backgrounds: Create a simple color background. Freeze the video background in order to not have a moving background. Unfocused the video image so that it is blurry. Select a single-color background (grass, water, sky, etc.). When using a scenic background, such as the closing shots of a drama, the background content or meaning may actually help determine the style and weight of the lettering that can be used. Plain background can prove very effective, as they are unobtrusive and emphasize the lettering. However they can also be dull and uninteresting. Ornamental backgrounds, which include patterning, texture, and abstract designs, may increase the graphics visual appeal. However, they can look confusing. Clearly, background section requires careful choice. Lettering against a multihued or multi toned background is invariably harder to read. If graphics are inserted over location shots, such as street scene, the eye may have some difficulty in discerning information, and may also be tempted to wander around the background instead. In most cases, by using larger type in light tones (white or yellow) with strong borders or shadows, legibility is considerably improved. As a general rule, avoid introducing lettering over backgrounds of similar tones or hues, or over printed matter (e.g., titles over a newspaper page). Light lettering is usually more easily read than dark, and pastel or neutral backgrounds are preferable to saturated hues. GRAPHIC EQUIPMENT: Character generator (CG) is a generic name for any type of television graphic creation equipment. CGs can change the fonts, shape, size, color and design of lettering. They can make it flash, flip, crawl (move sideways across the screen), roll (move vertically across the screen), and animate. Lettering can be presented as outlines or as solid characters, given a black border (black edge), or a surrounding drop shadow. Once the graphic is created, it can be rearranged, stored, and kept ready to appear on the screen at the press of a button. Standalone graphic generator system used to hold 99 percent of the market in professional television. They are still widely popular in larger markets and sports production. However, computers with graphic generation software have cornered a significant portion of the market. Today, computers are used in all markets and


provide sophisticated on-screen graphics. Some mobile production crews have moved to laptop systems. Graphics Trends in Sports Broadcast Graphics Step Up Their Game: Widely regarded as a critical production element, todays sports graphics must enhance the on-air presentation, support image branding, and promote a better understanding of the game. Not only do viewers want to be dazzled and entertained, they want to be splashed with timely, relevant data about the key plays, performances, and standings impacting their favorite sport. In recent years, sports fans have discovered a wealth of online resources, including game highlights, player statistics, and game analysisand this second screen distracts their attention from the TV. Also, as the percentage of consumers watching video-enabled cell phones grows, sports fans are finding that sports entertainment and information is often right at their fingertips wherever they go. It is in this increasingly diverse media environment that television broadcasters must attract viewers to their live sports shows and keep them glued to the set because audience size and demographics still determine the commercial revenue that sustains them.

Optimized Workflow Promotes Cost-Efficiency: While broadcasters need to push the creative envelope on sports graphics, theyve also got to tackle another challenge head-onholding the line on operating costs and automating the graphics process from design to delivery. For this reason, one of the most important trends in live sports graphics is optimizing workflow for greater cost efficiency. Weve already seen that, in most cases, multiple devices, such as the production switcher, DVE, still store, and CG, have been replaced by a single, powerful, multi-faceted live graphics system that embodies graphics creation, real-time video effects, 2D and 3D animations, elaborate texting tools, and multilayered composites. And the two or three operators that used to be needed to produce live graphics have since been reduced to one. Ultra-efficient workflow is also enabling one of the hottest buzzwords in live sports graphicsreal-time data-driven graphics. To capture the excitement of the game and highlight the action as it unfolds, real-time data-driven graphics bring the screen to life with a wide range of statistics that are continuously updated automatically.


Automating Score Board and Game Clock: The most basic iteration of real-time data-driven graphics is the scoreboard and game clock. Rather than having an operator manually update this on-screen display, its become increasingly common for broadcasters to program their graphics systems to take a feed directly from the arena scoreboard and game clock to capture data such as team names, scores, innings, time remaining to play, and more. Ideally, broadcasters should choose a graphics system that offers tools for developing custom interfaces to capture that data from the output ports of the top brands of scoreboards and displays in use at stadiums and arenas. The data, which streams to the graphics system with less than a second of delay, always reflects official displays at the venueand does so far more accurately and effortlessly than can be done as a manual task. Once the data reaches the graphics system, it then drives the on-screen game clock and score box automatically.

Real-time Data-Driven Graphics Trend

Where real-time data-driven graphics have really changed the game in sports graphics is the ability to fill 2D and 3D graphics or animations with a steady stream of statsplayer rankings, goals scored, team standings, records held or broken, an athletes profile, and virtually any type of information that third party sports data services generally provide.


By subscribing to these data services, broadcasters can configure their graphics systems to take the services real-time RSS feed and pass it straight through to their on-screen display just as its received. Data can also come from web pages, Excel or Access spreadsheets, text files, and Oracle databases. The data can feed a lower third ticker streaming across the screen, or update the standings on a leader board or scoreboardright before viewers eyes. ODBC, or Open Database Connectivity, is the most common industry standard protocol enabling graphics systems to pull data from databases and database services in order to import them into graphics templates. Another industry standard protocol commonly in use is Intelligent Interface, which is designed to push data from a variety of non-broadcast sources into graphics templates. Many high-end graphics systems also allow operators to manually input data, such as their local teams scores that have not yet been reported to national services.

Templates Automate Graphics Production: Templates are the most common mechanism for achieving automated, real-time data-driven graphics displays. Templates are pre-produced 2D or 3D graphics or animations that incorporate fields designating where certain types of data will be inserted and displayed. As streaming data arrives, the graphics computer decides which statistics will be displayed and ushers them into the appropriate fields on the templates automatically. The graphics system is preprogrammed with instructions about how best to filter, prioritize, and display the incoming data on the templates.


Template graphics can be simple, clean and legible, such as leader boards or team rosters. Or they can be complex, multi-layered, 3D eye candy effects. For example, 3D playing cards, each with a different players face, appear to be shuffled, and then each of these cards can be flipped over to reveal fresh data about that players touchdowns, goals scored, awards, or other career highlights. Artists only have to design one set of templates, which can then be used repeatedly for the entire season. Since a single template can be transformed into hundreds or thousands of different displays, the artist is spared countless hours of graphics creation, and consistent, high-quality image branding is assured across all telecasts.

Enhancing the Viewer Experience: In another significant trend, sports graphics have also moved right into the midst of game actionwhere theyre keyed directly onto the playing field. While some of these graphics takes the form of virtual advertisingproduct logos, banners, or signson or around the playing field, others provide viewers with dynamic visual guidelines, such as offside lines for soccer, the 1st and ten yellow lines in American football, and identification of competitors in each lane of a race. As sports graphics technology evolves, were sure to see increased volume and complexity of graphics created for a game; better integration of graphics displays on virtual and hard sets; conversion of broadcast graphics for online and mobile distribution; as well as more innovative visual compositions designed to realize the creative potential of DTVs widescreen canvas.


Chapter 8

Hawk-Eye Technology
Hawk-Eye is a complex computer system used in cricket, tennis and other sports to visually track the path of the ball and display a record of its most statistically likely path as a moving image. In some sports, like tennis, it is now part of the adjudication process. It is also used in some instances to predict the future path of a ball in cricket. It was developed by engineers at Roke Manor Research Limited of Romsey, Hampshire in the UK, in 2001.

Method of operation: All Hawk-Eye systems are based on the principles of triangulation using the visual images and timing data provided by at least four high-speed video cameras located at different locations and angles around the area of play. The system rapidly processes the video feeds by a high-speed video processor and ball tracker. A data store contains a predefined model of the playing area and includes data on the rules of the game. In each frame sent from each camera, the system identifies the group of pixels which corresponds to the image of the ball. It then calculates for each frame the 3D position of the ball by comparing its position on at least two of the physically separate cameras at the same instant in time. A succession of frames builds up a record of the path along which the ball has travelled. It also "predicts" the future flight path of the ball and where it will interact with any of the playing area features already programmed into the database. The system can also interpret these interactions to decide infringements of the rules of the game. The system generates a graphic image of the ball path and playing area, which means that information can be provided to judges, television viewers or coaching staff in near real time. The pure tracking system is combined with a backend database and archiving capabilities so that it is possible to extract and analyse trends and statistics about individual players, games, ball-to-ball comparisons, etc. Applications in sport: Cricket: Its major use in cricket broadcasting is in analyzing leg before wicket decisions, where the likely path of the ball can be projected forward, through the batsman's


legs, to see if it would have hit the stumps. Consultation of the third umpire, for conventional slow motion or Hawk-Eye, on leg before wicket decisions, is not currently sanctioned in international cricket and doubts remain about its accuracy in cricket. Due to its real-time coverage of bowling speed, the systems are also used to show delivery patterns of bowler's behavior such as line and length, or swing/turn information. At the end of an over, all six deliveries are often shown simultaneously to show a bowler's variations, such as slower deliveries, bouncers and leg-cutters. A complete record of a bowler can also be shown over the course of a match. Batsmen also benefit from the analysis of Hawk-Eye, as a record can be brought up of the deliveries batsmen scored from. These are often shown as a 2-D silhouetted figure of a batter and colour-coded dots of the balls faced by the batsman. Information such as the exact spot where the ball pitches or speed of the ball from the bowler's hand (to gauge batsman reaction time) can also help in post-match analysis. LBWs: Viewers now expect Hawk-Eyes verdict on lbw shouts; a testimony to HawkEyes reputation for accuracy and reliability. The companys experienced operators will deliver the relevant trajectory, half-mixed with the equivalent video sequence, in time for the first replay. This gives commentators and viewers adequate time to discuss and digest the result before the next ball has been bowled. Hawk-Eye helps to resolve the following three issues:

Would the ball have hit the stumps? Did the ball pitch in-line? Did the ball hit the batsman in-line? Wagon Wheels:

The singles, 2s, 3s, 4s and 6s that make up quick-fire 50s or vital centuries are represented by the different colours of the Wagon Wheel, which shows the areas of the field that the batsman has been targeting. Hawk-Eye now has the ability to display wagon wheels over photo realistic or virtual realistic backgrounds, giving broadcasters even more scope to taylor the Hawk-Eye 'look' towards the style of their production.


DeSpin: Hawk-Eye DeSpin Graphics demonstrate how far a delivery has deviated after pitching. Whilst the blue trajectory below represents a ball that does not spin or seam, the red actual delivery shows just how much turn the spinner has achieved.

Pitch Maps: Simple yet effective; Pitch Maps make a useful pause for reflection after the frenetic exchanges of the opening overs and highlight a bowlers consistency or expensiveness, line and length. Hawk-Eye can now display comparative Pitch Maps in a split screen format, as shown in the example to the right. Beehives: Beehives show where the ball has passed the batsman. As with the Pitch Map, the coloured balls correspond to the number of runs that the batsman has achieved from that delivery. Hawk-Eye Beehives can now be shown against a photo realistic or virtual realistic world, as with the Wagon Wheel feature.


RailCam: The RailCam (side view) shot of the VR World can be used to represent

differences in speed, bounce and delivery. The trajectories are animated, whilst the speeds provide further evidence of a bowlers variation or a telling comparison between athletes.

Ball Speeds: Hawk-Eye now has the ability to supply ball speeds as reliably as a radar gun, as demonstrated during the ICC World Twenty20 in South Africa.

Reaction Time: A Hawk-Eye Reaction Time is a simple yet valuable tool for demonstrating how quickly a particular bowler is pitching. The graphic can also be applied to a catch, thus quantifying a spectacular replay or slow-motion shot.


Tennis: Hawk-Eye has been used in television coverage of several major tennis tournaments, including Wimbledon, the Stella Artois at Queens, the Australian Open, the Davis Cup and the Tennis Masters Cup. The US Open Tennis Championship announced they would make official use of the technology for the 2006 US Open where each player receives two challenges per set. . It is also used as part of a larger tennis simulation implemented by IBM called Point Tracker.

The Hawk-Eye Innovations website states that the system has an average error of 3.6 mm. The standard size of a tennis ball is 65 to 68 mm. This means that there is a 5% error relative to the diameter of the ball. For the sake of comparison, approximately 5% of the diameter is the fluff on the ball. Snooker: At the World Snooker Championship 2007, the BBC used Hawk-Eye for the first time in its television coverage to show player views, particularly in the incidents of potential snookers. It has also been used to demonstrate intended shots by players when the actual shot has gone awry. It is now used by the BBC at every World Championship, as well as some other major tournaments.


Chapter 9

Picking the Sound for OB Coverage

Audio is one of the least appreciated yet most important aspects of television. The audio can make or break a production. In order to be prepared to capture the highest quality audio, there are a number of questions that need to be asked: What does the audience need to hear? In order for the audience to hear the necessary audio, who and what needs to have a microphone? Can the microphones appear in the shot? Must the TV audio be coordinated with the public address audio system being used at the event? How many microphone cables are needed? How long do they need to be? Do you need wired or wireless microphones? Is the natural sound a problem? What are sources of probable audio interference? Recognize that they will vary widely with the time and day. Are there any problems with existing acoustics? The final decision about the type and placement of microphones is generally the responsibility of the A-1. The decision is not always an easy one. There are a variety of types of microphones and placement techniques. In addition to microphone placement, the A-1 has to make sure that the signal can be transmitted back to the truck. The A-2 is responsible for the physical placement of microphones on the field of play. Stereo audio is increasingly becoming more popular as it allows the television viewer to experience the sound that spectators here at the venue. Stereo audio utilizes matched pairs of microphones called XY pairs. Stereo Audio for Television: Stereo sound is very natural to the listener since they already here things in stereo through tow ears. Stereo gives the viewer the ability to localize the direction of the sound and judge the distance of the sound source. The ability to localize the direction of the sound gives the viewer a sense of depth, a spatial awareness of the visual image and the sound. Most people are used to the constant left-right sound and picture orientation. However, some sports events to do not lend themselves to this type of coverage. For example, camera coverage of gymnastics, baseball and athletics tend to be head on looking at the athlete, plus over the shoulder and wide shots. In these situations stereo sound generally consists of an open, nonspecific ambience with sounds emerging from the left and right sides of the screen with the athlete sounds front and centre. Tennis, basketball and football easily lend themselves to a good left and right sound image. Stereo microphones on hand held cameras have been one of the biggest improvements in stereo sound for television. Stereo microphones on hand held


cameras deliver close, crisp, definable field of play sport sound, while giving a depth of field and spatial orientation to the picture. Basic 5.1 Surround Sound: When mixed correctly, surround sound can provide a sense of envelopment, a feeling of being there. The basic requirements for 5.1 channel missing / production is a mixing console with six discrete output buses: Left Front, Right Front (sometimes called Stereo Left and Right), Center, s subwoofer for Low Frequency Effects (LFE), Left Rear and Right Rear speakers (sometimes called Surround Left and Right). Surround sound is obtained by the A-1 panning between the five main channels and routing to the LFE channel. This set-up offers the greatest flexibility of sound placement in the surround field. The Olympic Surround Sound case study will give you an inside view of how surround sound for sports is set up. Traditionally, the A-1 is mix surround sound to the following speakers: Announcers voices are on the Left Front, Center and Right Front speakers. Sound effects are usually on the Left Front and Right Front. Atmosphere / ambience microphones are routed to the Left Rear and Right Rear speakers. Music is usually routed to the Front Left and Right and the Rear Left and Right speakers. The LFE track is usually used for rumble from the effects tracks. Audio Levels: Audio levels are generally talked about in terms of decibels (dB). 0 decibels has been established as the standard. However, 0 on a VU meter is a relative scale. It is always referenced to some standard level such as +4dBm or +8dBm. The most commonly used is +4dBm. There are basically two groups of audio signals line level and microphone (mic) level. Line level is 0 on the VU meter, which is +4dBm or +8dBm. Most audio outputs from machines (VTRs) are line level. The second type of audio signal is called mic level and is within the range from -50 dBm to around -60dBm on professional microphones. Most microphones fall into this group. Anything more than -70dBm is generally considered to be noise. These two different audio levels are not compatible. Mic level cannot be heard on line level and a line level would greatly distort a mic level input.


Microphone Pick-up Patterns: There are two primary types of audio pick-up patterns: Omnidirectional Pattern: The omnidirectional microphone is sensitive to audio coming from all direction front, side and back. Omnidirectional microphones resist wind noise and mechanical or handling noise better then unidirectional microphones. (See figure)

Unidirectional or Cardioid Patterns: The unidirectional or cardioid microphone primarily picks up audio coming from the focused direction. There are basically two types of unidirectional patterns the super cardioid is a short shotgun microphone, while the hyper cardioid is considered a long shotgun microphone and has a narrower pick up pattern than the super cardioid. Unidirectional microphones are used as camera mounted microphones since they are highly directional and generally do not pick up camera noise. (See figure)

Microphone Sound Generating Elements: There are basically two types of microphone sound converting mechanisms used for sport remotes dynamic and condenser.


Dynamic: Dynamic microphones are by far the most durable. They can withstand high sound levels without distortion or damage and they are generally the top choice of ENG / EFP production personnel. Dynamic microphones need little or no regular maintenance. However, they are not quite as high quality as the condenser microphone mentioned bellow. Condenser: Condenser microphones are very sensitive when it comes to weather conditions or physical abuse. They must be powered by a power supply, an inboard battery pack or a phantom powered audio board. The electric condenser microphone uses a polarizing voltage that is impressed into the diaphragm or back plate during manufacture. The charge remains for the life of the microphone. This type of microphone usually has a higher quality audio sound than the dynamic microphone, even when placed at a greater distance from the audio source. Condenser microphones have two other design advantages that make them ideal for sports broadcasting they weigh much less then dynamic elements and they can be much smaller. These characteristics make them the logical choice for shotgun, lavaliere and miniature microphones of all types. Audio Mixer: According to production requirement different types of Audio Mixers (analog / digital) are used for the coverage. Features:
(a) (b) (c) (d) No. of Audio Inputs. 16 / 24 / 64 No. of Audio Outputs. 2 / 5.1 / 7.1 No. of Group Outputs. 4 / 8 / 12 No. of Aux Outputs. 8 / 12 / 16

Through Audio Mixer, different audio channels like commentary 1,2,3, background sound, international sound, effect sound can be fade to transmission link.


Types of Microphones used for picking game sound:

Shotgun Microphone: The shotgun or line microphone, usually a condenser, is probably the most commonly used microphone on sport remotes due to its ability to pick up quality sound form a distance. it is especially used to pick up sound form the field of play and to mic the audience. The shotgun is very sensitive. It must always to be carried in a shock mount to avoid picking up extraneous sounds made by the person holding it. This microphone is also very sensitive to wide noises so windscreens must be used when working outdoors. (See figure)

Hand held Microphone: The hand-held microphone, or stick mic, is primarily used by talent reporting from the field of play or conducting and interview. It can also be used in a parabolic dish. Most hand-helds are designed to be held from 15 30 cm from the mouth. Talent should speak across the mic, not into it and hold it at roughly a 45 degree angle to the mouth. Differential hand-held microphones require a close proximity, allowing the talent to talk directly into the microphone. This close proximity to the microphone allows the talent to talk over loud background sound. (See figure)


Headset Microphone: The headset microphone is used by sportscasters who need to have their hand free. Headset microphones ensure the microphone will be the same distance from the announcers mouth at all times, allowing more freedom of movement and consistent audio quality. This microphone allows their hands to be free for working with notes. (See figure)

Lavaliere Microphone: The lavaliere or lav microphone is generally used by on-camera talent. It is also often used in a parabolic dish. The lavaliere is clipped onto clothing approximately 15 cm below the chin and is most often used as a wireless microphone. This mic is popular because it is always at a consistent distance from the talents mouth yet is not as bulky as the headset microphone. It is important to conceal the microphone cord so that it is not seen by television viewers. Lavaliere microphones can be as small as about 3 mm. (see figure)


Lavaliere microphones are also used to pick-up sounds in place where the mic should not been seen. For example, it is commonly used on basketball backboards to pick-up the sound of the ball hitting the hoop or the sound of the ball going through the hoop. Contact Microphone: Contact microphones listen to vibrations, not acoustic sounds. These microphones can be buried in the sand at sports such as beach volleyball and at events in athletics. It gives a completely different impact sound that should be subtly mixed into the program. This mics sound must be layered, it cannot stand alone. The sand microphones are generally mounted on Plexiglas and buried in the pits. (See figure)

Contact microphones can also been screwed into a wooden surface such as a basketball court, attached to gymnastics equipment or frozen into the ice for speed skating. Holophone Microphone: The holophone is the only single microphone capable of recording up to 7.1 channels of discrete surround sound without additional processing. This one microphone terminates into eight XLR microphone cable-ends (Left, Right, Center, Low Frequency, Left Surround, Right Surround, Top and Center Rear). (See figure)


Digital Processing Microphone: Digital processing microphones use an analog mic capsule with digital processing of that capsule. The mic can reject certain frequencies, allowing into pick up a specific sound like the kick of a ball, the punch of a boxing glove or the landing of the shotput. (See figure)

Clip microphones: Clip mics are used for close microphone situations where it is imperative to place a hidden, or low profile, microphone close to the source of the sound. Example of how this small microphone has been used includes clipping it to a landing mat for gymnastics or a net in volleyball. (See figure)

Boundary / Pressure Zone Microphone (PZM): While the pick-up technology is very different, these two microphones are used similarly. This type is especially useful for being a low profile microphone that has


the capability of picking up quality ambient sounds. The PZM microphone can be mounted on a hard surface to increase the pick-up distance. (See figure)

Commentators Noise Cancelling Ribbon Microphone or Lip Microphone: This lip ribbon mic is used for reproducing high quality commentary from noisy surroundings by cancelling out a high degree of background noise. Although this is probably the highest quality commentary mic, it must be handheld, unlike the headset mics that allow the commentator to use both hands for papers. Another disadvantage is that the mic obscures the commentators mouth, which is not great for television. (See figure)


Specialty Microphones: Just as specialty cameras are designed to cover specific sports situations, specialty microphones are created to fit unique audio events. Existing microphones can be adapted or rebuilt to capture audio that cannot be heard in any other way. (See figure) shows a specialty microphone that was specifically designed by Audio Technica to capture the sounds of yachting at the 2004 Olympics. The wireless and waterproof microphone was mounted on a buoy in the water.

Phantom Power: All types of microphones can be Phantom powered. Phantom microphones require voltage that is supplied to them through an audio mixer, recorder or camera. There are two different types P and T. The P (Phantom / Symplex) standard requires a balanced 48 volts. The T often referred to as A-B powering, is unbalanced 12 volts. These two types of microphones are not interchangeable and will not work if the incorrect voltage is attached. In fact, microphone components may be damaged if interchanged. The T standard was created primarily for television so that a camera head, which had trouble supplying 48 volts, could supply the power to a microphone. Some manufacturers actually put a T or P as part of the microphone model number for easy identification. Microphone Accessories: Wireless: The wireless could be considered as a type of microphone, however, almost all of the microphones we have mentioned can be wireless. Lavaliere microphones are probably the most commonly used wireless microphones because they allow the


talent to have unrestricted movement while speaking. The wireless lavaliere is great for capturing an athletes words or breathing during a competition or picking up the calls from a coach or referee. Wireless microphones actually work on radio frequencies (RF) and many are frequency programmable, allowing the audio personnel to select the best transmission frequency for a specific location. Some wireless microphones can transmit as far as 305 m. However, it is essential that audio personnel test the various locations where a wireless will be used in order to check for dead spots that either deteriorate or block the audio transmission. It is also occasionally possible to pick up other transmitting devices, such as police radios, or have interference from other wireless microphones. Since these microphones operate on batteries, it is important that new batteries be installed before each production and that crew members have spares available during the production. (See figure)

Shock Mounts: Shock mounts reduce mechanical noise transferred to a microphone through its mounting hardware or physical contact. (See figure)


Parabolic Dish: A parabolic dish uses an omnidirectional microphone aimed directly at the focal point of the dish, providing an extremely narrow pick-up pattern. (See figure)

These work well to screen background ambiance in a venue, allowing the audio personnel to pick up the sounds generated by the athletes during a competition. Hand-held or lavaliere microphones can be used with parabolic dishes. A wireless microphone is especially useful since the dish may need to be moved up and down the field of play. Although the quality of the audio is not always the highest, it works well for background or ambient sounds. It would not be good to use a parabolic dish for commentators. The keys to obtaining good sound with a parabolic dish are: Find a position that provides a clear path to the field of play. The microphone must be aimed directly at the field since the dish cannot pick up sound through a crowd of people. Stay alert and focused on the action occurring on the field of play. Listen closely to the microphone so that it can be finely tuned (aimed at the sound.). Sounds will be very clear when the beam is in the right place.

Windscreen: Windscreens protect the microphone sound generating elements from the wind or air generated by the talents mouth. When working outside, windscreens are essential for every type of microphone. While windscreens cannot protect the microphone from all wind noise, they can significantly reduce unwanted rumbling sounds. Windscreens take a variety of forms from foam rubber to the shaggy variety known as the windjammer. (See figure)


Microphone Placement: Track and field sounds are often very faint and difficult to be heard over ambient noise that tends to dominant or mask any relevant athletic sounds. Close miking is a technique that places the microphone as close as possible to the desired sound. Close miking permits the mixer to bring to the foreground the minute sounds of a particular activity, a technique that can effectively punctuate a sound mix. The key to microphone placement is finding the location that will allow you to capture the specific audio you want. Considerations include analyzing the port from a sound perspective, the type of microphone, sound sources, whether the microphone can be seen by the camera, and whether sounds are present that you do not want to record, place the microphones as close as possible to the audio source to ensure the highest quality sound. The farther the distance between the microphone and the audio source, the poorer the sound quality and the possibility of picking up unwanted sounds is increased. It is recommends that the lowest number of microphones possible be used. People sometimes have a tendency to over-mike a shot, using three or four microphones when one or two would be sufficient. Excess mics mean more background noise pick-up, greater chance of feedback or tin-can sound, and more levels for the operator to keep track of. If additional mics dont make things sound better, then they will probably make things sound worse. Camera Mounted Microphones Camera microphones, generally shotguns, are attached to the camera so that the viewer will hear exactly what they are seeing from that camera.


Talent Microphones: Talent, meaning anyone who appears on camera, uses specific microphones for different situations. In a broadcast booth, commentators usually use headset microphones to keep their hands free for notes and to have the ability to keep the microphone at a consistent distance from their mouth. Lavaliere microphones are generally used for interview situations or when the talent is on a set. The lavalieres prime advantage is that it is small and unobtrusive. Hand-held directional microphone is especially popular for interviewing on the field of play. The hand-held gives the interviewer the ability to control the interview by directing the microphone at the subject. Hand-helds are valuable because they can be placed very close to the mouth when there are loud background noises. They will help pick up what the commentator is saying and diminish background sound. Fixed Microphones: A variety of fixed microphones are used to capture specific sounds. Shotgun microphones may be used when trying to capture specific sounds on the field of play. Hand-held microphones are generally used to capture ambience sounds. Avoid placing the microphone where it will pick up specific people or the public address system. Due to the small size of a lavaliere microphone, it is sometimes used when the microphone needs to be hidden. For example, if the A-1 wanted to catch the sound of hands on the rings during a gymnastics competition, the lavaliere could actually be mounted on the chain holding the rings.

Wireless Microphones: Wireless microphones can be used with umpires or referees, in parabolic dishes, and anywhere else that audio cables would get in the way or be difficult to run. Communication (Intercom) Systems: While microphone signals flow to the OB Van for the on-air program, communication between producers, camera operators and other television engineers is accomplished through another set of wires that make up the intercom. This television intercom communications system utilizes equipment that functions very similarly to a telephone. The A-1 is responsible for the intercom system for the remote production crew and routes the various channels to the appropriate personnel.


To communicate from production and engineering to field operators, a headset and intercom box is plugged into a cable that runs to the OB Van. This cable is plugged into an intercom channel so that operators can talk to the truck. Intercom systems may comprise many different types of intercoms and subsystems. The three basic systems can be categorized as party-line, matrix and wireless systems, as well as any combination of the three types.

Wired party-line system involves a number of participants in the same conversation. Everyone can speak to and hear each other in a public conversation. This system may be referred to as party-line (PL), two-wire (TW) referring to the two wires required, or a conference denoting the type of activity taking place in the conversation. A wired matrix system is an intercom system in which a large number of individuals have the ability to establish private individual conversations from point A to point B at the same time. The matrix system is not limited to simple point-topoint communications. Like telephone systems, they also have other functions and capabilities including conference, call waiting and busy signals. This type of


system is also referred to as a cross-point intercom, point-to-point system, private line or some of the various brand names. Wireless systems encompass all sorts of systems from the most basic pair of walkie-talkies to mobile phones to dedicated professional intercoms. The most basic feature of wireless intercoms is that they are not tethered by wires. Wireless intercom systems are employed where their limitations interference, battery life, lack of range and lack of security are outweighed by the freedom of being cordless. A wireless intercom can be designed, installed, configured and operated in PL or matrix configurations, and may be connected to a hard-wired PL or matrix intercom system at some point. They can range from a simple single pair of units talking to one another, to a system in which 24 or more different portable units are dynamically switched between conversations. ( see figure) There are basically two types of intercom user stations. These include belt packs and master stations. Belt Pack: This portable single or two channel intercom headset box is designed to be worn on a users belt, but is often fastened to the underside of consoles, taped to a structure near the user or mounted on a piece of equipment. The intercom headset plugs into the belt pack, as does the connection to the rest of the intercom. Master Station: The master station allows a director to access multiple channels. This allows different crews to be monitored, cued or updated. The master station includes both an intercom user station and an intercom system power supply combined in one package. Cables should be organized so that the intercom signal flows in the direction of the male connector. This is the way the equipment that you must attach to the wire is usually designed. Microphone signals flow toward the truck or camera. Intercom signals flow away from the truck. Most mobile units / OB Vans have from 12 to 24 channels of intercom and an additional 12 interruptible fold-back (IFB) channels that are used to communicate to on-air talent. In most cases, only the producer, director and possibly the spotters will need to communicate with the on-air talent. It is not uncommon to have back up transmission equipment actually transmitting the same program on a different microwave link or satellite. That way, if something happens with your primary transmitter, the production still gets to the intended distribution source. Although backup plans may seem like an unnecessary expense, if a problem occurs you will have saved yourself the cost of losing the production. The producer will determine which crew members need to talk to each other and whether they should use an intercom channel or a two-way radio. Most of the time, the producer will be talking with the director, assistant director, font coordinator, technical director and tape and RF camera operators. The intercom will be programmed so that the producer can talk to all of them or individually.


Also, producers will have an all call switch that allows them to talk to everyone on IFB. The director will primarily want to talk with the camera, graphics and videotape operators. The technical director will want mainly to listen to the director and talk with camera operators, videotape operators, and the A-1.

Intercom Network


Chapter 10

Lighting for Sports Venue

Lighting is one of the primary considerations when determining camera placement. Cameras need a basic level of light to operate. In addition, the creative aspects of lighting can help set the mood of the production. Below is a review of some of the issues that need to be considered for sport venues. Why is good lighting necessary for sport? All sporting events require good light to enable the sport to be played properly, the best results to be achieved and to provide enjoyment for participants and spectators, whether they are present in the venue or watching at home on television. To maximise the use of limited space and expensive facilities, venues are increasingly being used for a range of different sports and even for other events as well, such as concerts, theatre performances and exhibitions. This needs to be taken into account in the lighting design. Media coverage, and television coverage in particular, is playing an ever-increasing part in sporting events and this means there is a demand


for lighting that will enable excellent image quality while distraction for players, spectators and referees. Following points to be consider for Survey of sport lighting. Indoor Venue:

limiting the glare and

Does the venue have adequate lighting or are additional lights required? Will the heat generated by the lighting instruments be too much to handle for the air conditioning system in the venue?

Outdoor Venue: Will the event be shot during daylight or at night? What kind of lighting is already available? Where will the sun be located during the production? Does lighting need to be added to illuminate dark shadows on the field of play? It is important to view the venue at the same time of day you will be shooting the event in order to correctly evaluate the lighting conditions.

Other Lighting Concerns: Can the electrical system handle additional lights? If stadium lights are turned on at night, can the electrical system handle the increased load of a mobile unit / OB Van? Does talent require special lighting? If so, where does special lighting for the talent need to be located (both, field, mixed zone, etc.)? Can lights be hung on existing structures? Can windows be covered or filtered in order to block out daylight or reduce glare?

Most professional sports venues have special lighting specifications. For example, the International Olympic Committee Broadcasting Guide specifies that following: In general, the lighting level should not be less than 1400 lux measured in the direction of the main television cameras. Special care must be taken to match color temperature in the case of venues where there is a mix of artificial light and daylight. Additionally, at indoor venues where windows and translucent roof may cause daylight interference, this problem must be addressed to prevent negative effects.


Lighting aspects: Quantity of light required Horizontal illuminance Vertical illuminance Illuminance uniformity Uniformity gradient Modeling and shadows Colour rendering Glare Emergency escape lighting Switching mode Emergency (continuity) TV lighting Obtrusive light

Quantity of light required (illuminance): This is the amount of light (measured in lux) that is required for the sport to be played. The faster the sport and the smaller the playing object, the higher the lighting level required. Normally several different settings or switching modes are recommended so that the lighting system can be used efficiently at all levels, from training mode (non-televised) right through to international TV mode (televised). Horizontal illuminance (Eh): This is the average quantity of lux to be achieved over the agreed maintenance cycle period for an installation. Maintenance includes replacement of lamps and cleaning of luminaires. Where there is television coverage, it is becoming increasingly common for minimum lighting levels to be specified in the industry.


Vertical illuminance (Ev): This is the quantity of light on a vertical plane and should be calculated for unrestricted camera positions. Camera illuminance this is the quantity of light that shines in the direction of a fixed camera position. Calculations should be carried out using the actual angles perpendicular to the camera positions. The side of a player forms the reference for a television camera. The camera illuminance should ideally also be considered for the ball in flight, as this reading will differ from the camera illuminance at ground level. For diving, the camera illuminance should be considered from the diving point to the surface of the water. It may be important to provide TV shots of the spectators. The contrast ratio between the participants and the spectators should therefore be considered (as a rule of thumb, 15% of the average camera illuminance level can be assumed. Illuminance uniformity: There are two measurements that are normally taken: Minimum/Average: This is the ratio of the lowest to the average level of illuminance. Minimum/Maximum: This is the ratio of the minimum to the maximum level of illuminance. An adequate level of uniformity is required to create balanced lighting conditions so that peoples eyes and the television cameras do not continually have to adapt to a different light level. Uniformity gradient: As a television camera pans over a match or tournament, the differences in illuminance levels will affect the image quality. It is therefore not only the uniformity that needs to be considered, but also the gradient of change between the calculation points. The UG is expressed as a ratio of the illuminance at a single point to the 8 adjacent grid points. Modeling and shadows: Modeling defines the ability of the lighting to reveal form and texture. This can affect how attractive a scene looks. Shadows can cause serious problems on a field of play. A classic example is ice hockey, where the side barriers around the perimeter of the playing area can create a harsh shadow at the edges of the ice pitch if the luminaires are not positioned correctly. To reduce harsh shadows a ratio of 60/40 should be used as a rule of thumb to determine the maximum number of luminaires on one side of a sports arena in relation to the number of luminaires on the other side.


Colour rendering: Colour rendering is the ability of a light source to reproduce surface colours accurately. A colour rendering index (Ra) is used to describe the performance of a lamp. Colour temperature: This is the apparent colour of the light source and is often described as warm, white or cool. The colour temperature is defined in degrees Kelvin (K).The lower the value, the warmer the colour appearance. For example, 2700 K has a warmer colour appearance than 4000 K. The colour temperature is used to help create the ambiance in a space and should not be confused with the colour rendering. If there is to be television coverage, it is not recommended to mix colour temperatures. Glare: Glare is a controversial issue. There are mathematical formulae for calculating glare, but whether or not people will experience glare in a sporting situation is something that is very subjective. Obviously, if someone looks straight at a 2 kW luminaire at close range they will experience glare, but in the majority of other situations it is less clear whether an individual will experience glare from the lighting. Below are the key parameters that determine glare. Specific recommendations are given in the sections on indoor sports, outdoor areas and outdoor stadiums. It is strongly recommended that a sport lighting specialist is consulted to ensure glare is reduced to a minimum.


Major Events:
Horizontal Illuminance HDTV Slow motion camera Fixed camera Mobile camera National Events: Camera 100-200 1.35 2.0 100 1.5 2.5 >80 <50 150-300 150-300 Uniformity Avg / min 1.25 1.25 Uniformity Max /min 1.35 1.35 Camera Illuminance 220 180 Uniformity Avg / min 1.35 1.35 Uniformity max / min 1.5 2.0 Color Rendering >90 >80 Glare rating <50 <50

















Average horizontal and camera illuminance ratio: It is recommended that the horizontal illuminance (Field of Play) is between 0.75 and 1.5 of the camera illuminance for cameras. Where there is HDTV all horizontal values for other cameras are as for HDTV.

Emergency (continuity) television lighting and hot restrike: A sports arena should ideally have a backup power source in case the principal power supply fails. If high-intensity discharge lamps are to be used, the lighting installation should incorporate an emergency TV switching mode with hot restrike luminaires. A hot restrike system enables a high-intensity discharge lamp to be re-lit straight away in the event of a temporary power failure, instead of having to wait for up to 15 minutes before the lamp can restart. This is not only essential for television coverage, because the loss of images for up to 15 minutes is unacceptable, but also for the participants and spectators because the lack of lighting will totally disrupt play. Obtrusive light: It is uncontrolled light that is directed up in to the sky or beyond the boundary of a sports facility. Reference should be made to CIE 150 or local regulations.


Case Study for TV broadcast lighting Specification:

In this specification: The court plus a 2m boundary zone is known as the field of play(FOP) The area between the FOP and the corral is known as sport support. The total area within the corral is known as the total FOP. A camera allocated to be the principal camera for a part of the court is termed here as the relevant camera. For the purpose of this specification, cameras are referred to as either hard (located in affixed position) or ERC (ENG roving camera). There are hard cameras on four sides of the court. The lighting of the FOP shall meet the following requirements: LIGHT SOURCE: The color temperature within the venue covered by the broadcast shall be 5600K. All the lamps used during television broadcast shall, o Have a nominated color temperature, TK, of 5600K (or up to a maximum of 5900K) and be within the IEC2 and manufacturers tolerances. o Have a color rendering index (CRI Ra8) of > 90. o Be from the same manufacturer and from the same production batch. Low wattage lamps are preferred. MINIMUM ILLUMINANCE: The minimum vertical illuminance at any point of the FOP shall be > 1400 lux towards the relevant cameras. The minimum vertical illuminance at any point of the total FOP shall be > 1000 lux towards the relevant cameras.


UNIFORMITIES for FOP; with sport support shown in brackets: Vertical illuminance, for each relevant hard camera: o The minimum to maximum ratio (Ev-min / Ev-max). U1,shall be > 0.7 (0.4) o The minimum to average ratio (Ev-min / Ev-max), U2, shall be > 0.8 (0.6) Horizontal illuminance: o The minimum to maximum ratio (Eh-min / Eh-max), U1,shall be > 0.7 (0.6) o The minimum to average ratio (Eh-min / Eh-max), U2, shall be > 0.8 (0.7) o The ratio of the average horizontal illuminance of the sport support to the average horizontal illuminance of the FOP shall be > 0.6 and < 0.7

LUMINAIRES and AIMING LOGIC: The lighting, whilst ensuring maximum visual comfort for the athletes, should recreate a television studio environment with an appropriate overall level of dramatic theming, natural modeling and creative effect. The minimum mounting height of the luminaries shall be 8.5m. No luminaries shall be located either over the marked court or directly behind the baskets. The luminaries aiming angle, in elevation, shall be < 650 No luminaries shall be aimed directly at a camera, and preferably not within a 500 cone centered on the camera. Luminaries shall be located such that reflections off the court surface (skip light) in the direction of the main cameras are to be eliminated. The lighting shall limit shadows on the court form the basket and support apparatus. If a hard camera is within a zone made by horizontal lines 25 0 either side of the horizontal aiming angle of the luminaries and either: o The vertical angle between a horizontal plane through the luminaries and the camera lens is < 250. Or o The luminaries is aimed > 400 , then the luminaries shall be constructed or fitted with a glare-controlling device, such that the light-emitting area of the lamp is shielded from the cameras field of view or fitted with barn-doors.


Chapter 11

Type of OB Vans
The design concept of OB Vans has changed over the past few years Not long ago OB Vans were usually built for a particular production purpose such as sport news or shows and other cultural events. Today OB Vans are designed to cover all production requirements. They must however be flexible enough to adapt to the changing requirements from a technical and operational point of view No production unit can afford to keep a costly OB Van in the garage just because it cannot be used for a certain type of production. As stated earlier, mobile units come in a variety of sizes. The size required will depend on the needs of the production. They are generally equipped for a specific purpose. A large mobile unit typically includes: Video switcher (64 inputs with multiple mix / effect buses) Digital video effects (DVE) Still store High level graphics generator 1-8 studio cameras 1-6 hand-held cameras (including pan heads, tripods, lenses) 6-8 VTRs Slow-mo controllers Disc recorder (DDR) Audio console (roughly 120 inputs) Dolby surround sound A full inventory of microphones (shotgun, lavaliere, hand-helds) Sportscaster headsets and boxes Multiple digi cart players CD Player Compression / limiters 12 channel intercom 12 channel IFB system Multiple phone hybrids Multiple line phone system 8-12 two way radios 12-28 frame synchronizers


20-40 distribution converters 8-12 outboard monitors Multiple four instrument light kits Camera cable 6000 Triax, 4000 coax Audio cable 3000 DT 1

In contrast, medium sized mobile units generally are minimally equipped with switcher, tape decks and graphics equipment in a fairly small area. In some cases, productions require only a small mobile unit sometimes as small as a mini-van-that is generally equipped for a specific purpose. Another type of mobile production unit is a fly pack. They include much of the same equipment that mobile units have, however the equipment racks are built into shipping cases that can be assembled like building blocks and then wired together to make a portable production unit. These units can be shipped by standard air freight making them a cost-effective alternative to shipping a production truck. When considering using a fly pack for a production, it is important to keep in mind that they do take more time to assemble on-site and are sometimes more expensive to rent. These units are sometimes referred to as fly-away kits, grab-and go packs, air packs and cube type units. Fly packs typically contain the following: Small video switcher Graphic generator Digital video effects (DVE) Still store* 1 6 cameras (including studio kits, pan heads, tripods and lenses) Wave form / Vectroscope Monitors Distribution amplifiers Inventory of microphones (shotgun, lavaliere, hand-helds) CD Player Minidisk 1 4 channel intercom (including belt packs and headsets) Frame synchronizers Scan converters

*These items may not come with the standard configuration


OB-Van Type XL:

The OB Van type XL has been designed to satisfy all kind of production and postproduction tasks. The individual vehicle layout allows more seating for a large production crew or operating desks and rack space for demanding post production needs

OB-Van Type L:

OB Vans type L is the adequate tool for major events like sport transmissions during international championships and broadcasts from international political events. They can substitute the video and audio facilities of TV production studios whenever fixed installations are economically not feasible.


OB-Van Type M:

OB Vans type M cover medium size sport productions or recordings large TV drama sequences and entertainment programs.

OB-Van Type DSNG:


Chapter 12

Inside Outside of DDK Ahmedabads OB Van

Vehicle: Chassis: Total length: Total height Admissible total weight : Working room: power supply: Air conditioning system: Ashok Leyland 9685 mm 3030 mm 15 T 2 operation area IE.3 , 30 KVA Feeders Lloyd, 3, 2.5 T.2nos.unit.


Vision Mixing 16inputs, 2-ME switcher, 12 aux bus, frame store. 2-D DVE. Monitor wall in PCR 9 LCD monitors(16nos.), 9CRT(2nos.),14CRT(4nos.) Monitor wall in Video area: 9CRT(8nos.)14LCD(2nos.)


Cameras: Thomson TTv1657 cameras.-7nos. o Canon lenses- 20X(5nos.)70X(1no) 55X(1no) o RF unit for Handheld cameras: COEFDM link 2units(Link XP and Live Tools make) o Up to 13 Triaxed cameras available on request. 2 small cameras available on request for stump or remote location.


DVC PRO-965/950 (4nos) EVS 4 channel slow motion.

Audio: Sound craft B 800 Stereo audio mixer- 16 input,4 group O/P,2 master O/P, 8 Aux O/P CD player. Hybrid Phone in system on request. Microphones: 4 Lip (Coles make), Lavierer 2nos(AKG make),RF Lapel 4nos.(Senneheiser make) , RF Hand held 2 nos.(Senneheiser make) Monitoring Ampli speaker: Truth make

Communications: Triology (Orater) communications system with 5 remote panel plus 5nos. Belt pack unit. Walkie-Talkie Motorola make GP328-6nos. 8 Line Panasonic telephone systems. Wireless monitoring System (PSM) Senneheiser make-1no.


Engineering, Cable and Miscellaneous: 16 x 16 Video router (Network make) DDA-3nos/VDA-3nos./A-D-4nos./D-A-4nos. Redundant sync generators with auto changeover.(Triology make) 1 frame synchronizers on request. Video Triax-300 mtr. (1 no.), 100 mtr. (4nos.), 50mtr. (14nos.), 10 mtr. (3no.) Audio cable- 100mtr.(Snake 8),100 mtr.(2 pair) 2 lighting kits on request Digital Waveform monitor / Vectroscope Off Air Monitoring system. DTH Set.

Power Supply: PD Panel (Miniature), 63 A, with Frequency meter and change over switch. 40 KVA Generator (Kirlosker make) AVR 10 KVA. 3, (1no.) UPS, 6KVA, 1 (3no.)

Cable Storage Facility in DDK Ahmedabads OB Van:

Fire Alarm System: 3 smoke sensor with Hooter


Audio Video Flow in the OB Van:


Audio Video Flow in the OB Van:


Audio Video Flow in the OB Van:


Chapter 13

Links for Coverage System

(a) COFDM Based Digital Wireless Camera System. (b) Optical Fiber System. (c) Satellite Link (DSNG) for transmission.

(a) COFDM Based Digital Wireless Camera System.

This system provides a simple, reliable digital link for video, sound and data. This COFDM digital technology, with error correction, provides a clear picture without the ghosting and break-up associated with analogue systems. This thrives in conditions with multiple reflections plus non line sight situations. This is especially suited to small cameras outputting a composite video signal. The input quality will be maintained providing superb picture quality at the receiver output. This comes from the same stable at the professional broadcast wireless camera, the system of choice for broadcast users throughout the world. This range has the unique advantage of ultra low delay avoiding the problems associated with live events. The diversity reception not only provides the most robust signal recovery but also allows for seamless coverage over linked areas, e.g. around a race circuit. This transmitter is supplied with a detachable heat sink. With heat sink attached the unit will operate in the harshest environments and will stay cool. Where space is restricted or where there is limited weight allowance the unit may be attached to a suitable bulkhead to dissipate heat in place of the heat sink.

DWS-How it works MPEG o Video Coding System COFDM o Radio Transmission System Diversity o Radio Reception System


DWS How it works: MPEG video and audio coding o High Quality 4:2:2 and 4:2:0 selectable components. o Efficient use of transmitter o Known and standard interoperable method. o Low Delay.

Link make DWS Applications: Lowest end-to-end signal delay of just 40ms. Diversity reception for the most robust service. Instant receiver recovery without blank screens. Digital COFDM, MPEG 4:2:0 systems. International All standards supported. Microphone and line audio inputs. On board cameras: - Rally cars, off road vehicles and helicopters. Film assist: - Where the output of a film camera may be viewed remotely. Crowd camera: - Attached to a video camera, small enough to mingle with the crowd. Indoor use: - Used with a small camera to explore those tight corners.


Features: 1.95 2.7 GHz, 3.4 3.58 GHz, 6.425 7.125 GHz Lowest signal delay of just 40ms, allows system to be used just like a wired camera. Diversity reception for the most robust service and multiple area coverage. Instant receiver recovery without blank screens. Digital COFDM, MPEG 4:2:2 system. All standards supported, PAL, NTSC Low weight and low power consumption. Camera control option UHF (XPR) Camera control option with COFDM reverse video (XPRV) Multiple receiver, Triax and system option for every type of event or production.


Optical fiber has become the transmission medium of choice for most communications networks primarily because of its advantages over other communications media in bandwidth and distance capability But for many applications, fiber has other characteristics that make it the best choice. It is immune to electromagnetic radiation, so its used in noisy electrical environments. Fiber-optic cables are very small, making it easy to run cables in restricted areas, for example, in historic buildings or across streets and sidewalks. Fiber has other characteristics that allow it to be tailored to specific applications. It can be used with different types of light sources for various applications, allowing the use of inexpensive LEDs or vertical-cavity surface-emitting laser (VCSEL) for short links or more expensive, higher- powered lasers for longdistance links. Many users dont realize that fiber can carry either analog or digital signals and that many video links, wireless antenna systems and hybrid fiber-coax (HFC) CATV systems are actually analog. Digital transmission, of course, is more efficient, allowing easy multiplexing of many signals over one pair of optical fibers.

How fiber-optic systems work: How does fiber transmit signals? To start, its useful to understand how an optical fiber transmits light. The fiber has two parts the core, which carries the light and the cladding, which is made of a different optical material that trap light in the core by a process called total internal reflection.(see figure 1.) Attenuation of the light inside the core is caused by scattering and



Figure 1: An example of total internal reflection

The attenuation of the light is a function of the color or wavelength of the light. Most fiber-optic systems operate in the infrared where the attenuation of optical fiber is lower, primarily at 850nm, 1300nm or 1550nm where the light is invisible to the human eye. Some fiber-optic systems have enough power to be harmful to the eye, but because the light is invisible you wont know until its too late. Never look into a fiber unless its been checked with a power meter to ensure no light is present. Secondly, a fiber-optic transmitter converts an electrical signal, analog or digital, to an optical signal. Digital pulses from connected electronics are converted to pulses of light from an LED or laser and coupled into the fiber. Analog electronic signal inputs are used to modulate a light source to mimic the electronic input and likewise can be coupled into the fiber. At the far end, a photodiode converts the incoming optical signal to an electrical signal, amplifies it and then presents it to the system electronics.

Simplex signals such as security camera outputs or connections to digital speakers require only one fiber but duplex links, like most communications links, generally use two fibers carrying signals in opposite directions. Its possible to use only one fiber, but the components needed to create a bidirectional link are generally more costly than using two fiber.(see figure 2.) The quality of the transmission over a fiber-optic link is generally determined by how much signal is received by the detector in the receiver. With digital signals, we speak of bit error rate (BER) but its just the inverse of the well-known analog signal to noise ratio (SNR). The BER is low or SNR high (both good) When the receiver has the proper amount of optical power. If there is too little receiver


power, the SNR is low or BER is high because the noise is high compared with the incoming signal. Too much power at the receiver will cause overloading and distortion (just like speakers), so the BER goes up quickly. (See figure 3.)

Figure 3: Too much power at a receiver causes overloading and distortion, and BER goes up quickly.

The receiver power must be just right, which is a function of the transmitter power, the loss in the fiber-optic cables and the sensitivity of the receiver. Manufactures design data links using particular transmitter/receiver pairs that can operate over a range of optical power, and those particular devices determine the required characteristics of the cable plant. To understand this, optical power needs to be defined. Optical power is like voltage in electronics, except its measured in decimals (dB), like sound. Optical power is a logarithmic function; a change of 10dB is a factor of 10,20dB is a factor of 100, etc. Absolute optical loss or power is measured in dB m or dB referenced to 1mw. Optical loss or attenuation is measured in dB, a relative measurement. The difference in the transmission output and the receiver sensitivity is the dynamic range of the link, which is called the link loss budget. These are important specifications for any fiber-optic transmitter/receiver pairs or complete data links. For example, a laser transmitter with 0dB output and a receiver with a sensitivity range of -10dBm (overload) to -30dBm (minimum for useful SNR or BER) has an operating range of 10dB to 30dB loss in the fiber-optic cable plant. That is, it must have the transmitter attenuated by at least 10dB to not over load the receiver but not more than 30dB so that the SNR is high enough at the receiver. In this example, if the fiber-optic cable plant has less than 10dB loss, it will be necessary to add an attenuator at the receiver to reduce the power. If the loss in the cable plant is more than 30dB, a more powerful transmitter, more sensitive receiver or lower loss cable plant is needed. With this knowledge, the engineer can start selecting a transmission system for his or her needs. If designing his or her own equipment, the engineer will choose transmission and receiver. If purchasing systems or equipment, he or she may choose modules that convert the current electrical signals into optical


signals (called media converters) or turnkey systems. Either way, the hardware decision will be based on communications needs: analog or digital, signal types (Ethernet, audio, video, etc.) bandwidth and distance of the link. Choosing the right fiber: Just like copper cables, fiber comes in types optimized for the application. There are three basic types of fibers: multimode step-index, multimode graded-index and single mode. (See figure 4.) Within each basic type are different grades of fiber.

Multimode, step-index

Single mode Figure 4 : Fiber types

Multimode step-index has the highest attenuation and lowest bandwidth, making it appropriate for shorter, slower links. The most widely used multimode stepindex fiber is plastic optical fiber (POF), which is the fiber of choice for industrial robots, consumer electronics and the entertainment systems in millions of automobiles. The capability of POF is similar to that of cat 5 UTP, and the cost is about the same too. Most premises cabling systems, like LANs and security cameras, use all-glass multimode graded-index fiber. The graded-index glass core of this fiber gives it hundreds of times more bandwidth than POF and much lower attenuation. There are three common varieties of this fiber, distinguished by the diameter of the core the bandwidth. All these fibers have an outside diameter of the glass fiber of 125 microns (about .0005in, slightly larger than a human hair).Core sizes are either 62.5 microns or 50 microns, so the


industry calls them 62.5/125 or 50/125 fiber. For most of 20 years, 62.5/125 multimode graded-index fiber (now called om1 fiber) was most widely used. It worked well with the inexpensive LED sources used for premises links and had adequate bandwidth for networks with speeds up to 200Mb/s, such as fast Ethernet. When Gigabit Ethernet was introduced, LED sources were too slow, so a new laser called a VCSEL was used. The limited bandwidth of 62.5/125 fiber brought back an older fiber design, originally used for early telephone systems that offered better performance with lasers, called 50/125 fiber (now called OM2 fiber). Fiber manufacturers soon introduced a new 50/125 fiber optimized for lasers with even higher bandwidth (called OM3 fiber). While there is still plenty if 62.5/125 fiber in use, new installations are more likely to use 50/125 fiber, especially the higher bandwidth laser-optimized OM3 version. The slightly higher cost is easy to justify for most applications because of its upgradeability. Very high-speed (>10GB/s) or long-distance (>1km-2km) links use singlemode fiber, which has very low attenuation and virtually unlimited bandwidth. However, the laser sources needed for single-mode fiber are more expensive, making single-mode links too expensive for shorter or slower applications. Cable choices: Cables are designed to protect the fibers from damage by moisture or other harm in the environment in which it is installed. Most outdoor cables are loose-tube construction, where fibers are encased in small plastic tubes inside the cable. Very high fiber count cables, up to 2000 fibers or more, align the fibers into ribbons to provide the maximum number of fibers in a small cable. All outdoor cables have dry powder or gel filling to prevent moisture damage. Outdoor cable construction is designed for the individual installation, with attention paid to how the cable is being installed, for example, pulled into conduit underground, direct-buried by plowing-in, installed aerially or even under water. Constructions include strength members for pulling the cable under tension or hanging it on poles and may include armor to prevent damage by rodents or rocky soil. Premises cables are all required to have jackets that are flameretardant to prevent spreading fires or emitting toxic fumes. Because premises cables do not need to withstand harsh outdoor environments, they are smaller and lighter. Just be certain that the flammability rating is appropriate for the intended installation. Termination: Connectors and splices: Cables are terminated with connectors that allow ties to other cables or transmission equipment. Splices are generally used for permanent connections, either concatenating cables on long outdoor runs or splicing pigtails on singlemode fibers for termination. Most system today use one of three connector types: SC, a snap-in connector


with a 2.5mm ferrule; ST, a bayonet locking connector with a 2.5mm ferrule; or LC, a tiny snap-in connector with a 1.25mm ferrule. All provide similar performance in loss and reflectance with a physical-contact (PC) ferrule finish, but the SC and LC are available with an angle-polished ferrule (called SC/APC or LC/APC) that minimizes reflectance for extremely high-speed or analog video on SM fiber. Connectors can be installed in the field by attaching to the fiber with adhesives and polishing the ends, or using pre-polished connectors that are spliced onto the fibers. Splicing can be done by fusing or welding fibers together (fusion splicing) or aligning and crimping fibers in a holder (mechanical splicing.) Fusion splicing is cheaper when making lots of splices, has better performance and is used almost exclusively with single-mode outdoor cables, but requires expensive tools (fusion splicer and clever). Mechanical splices are more expensive per splice, have poorer performance, but require only inexpensive tooling. Installation: Installing fiber-optic cables is no harder than any other cable, as long as the installer has been properly trained. Fiber-optic cable plants use hardware (cable trays, conduit, patch panels, etc.) Similar to and sometimes identical to that used width copper cabling, but the variety is so large that it is important to consult with the cable manufacture to understand all the choices. After installation, all fibers in all cables must be tested with a light source and power meter for loss to confirm proper installation. Longer runs and spliced cables require testing with an optical time-domain reflectometer (OTDR), fiberoptic radar, to verify splices and during installation. Documentation: The most important part of any fiber-optic cable plant design and installation is proper documentation. Documentation provides the information needed to buy components, install the cables, verify proper installation and provide the data needed in case it is ever necessary to repair damage to the cables. Contractors and installers must be given documentation so they know what to install and what defines the quality of the installation. No project should ever be started unless documentation is properly prepared and updated every step of the way.


Microwave Links for OB:

System Concepts:

Transmitters: Sitting of the transmitter is largely dictated by location of the event to be televised and is therefore substantially outside the operators choice. Consequently, the transmit terminal generally makes greater demands of the designer. Let us examine the main options available to the development engineer. Two broad approaches are common: direct modulation and heterodyne.

Direct modulation: The generation of a UHF signal and its modulation and multiplication to the required output frequency is a technique generally termed direct modulation. Direct modulation has advantages of simplicity, small physical size and low cost. The modulatable synthesizer eliminates the major difficulty in maintaining effective frequency stability while applying video modulation to the master oscillator, but there still remain significant disadvantages to this method of power generation, notably in multi-hop operation, which is now often demanded of portable point-to-point equipment. FM modulation is applied to a relatively lowfrequency oscillator and its modulated output subsequently multiplied to the desired final frequency. Deviation is therefore effectively multiplied by the same factor as the oscillator frequency. CCIR standards set the final deviation (usually 8MHz peak to- peak at the baseband crossover frequency), and it follows that deviation at the modulation frequency must be reduced by a factor F/N, where N is the multiplier and F is the final frequency. Unfortunately the dominant system noise emanates from, or is prior to, modulation and is therefore multiplied with the deviation. Ultimate noise performance is thereby limited, and the technique becomes less practical as the operating frequency band increases. Direct modulation has a further disadvantage. When line of sight is not available for the required path, a repeater is necessary. Transferring the signal from a receiver to a following transmitter without demodulation at a repeater is very attractive as non-linear distortions and noise associated with the demodulation and remodulation process are eliminated. A receiver will generally have available a suitable IF output to feed the ongoing circuit (usually 70 MHz), but compatibility with direct modulation transmitters is not possible as no matching frequency is available to access for injection.


The modulated master oscillator frequency and subsequent multipliers are determined by the designated transmission frequency and hence are different in every case. Recovery of at least composite video is therefore necessary at each intermediate station, followed by a repeat modulation process giving rise to the term remodulating system.


A more purist solution is offered by the up-conversion or heterodyne philosophy. Here a separate video modulator, usually running at 70 MHz, is mixed with a suitable SHF pump frequency so that one sideband provides the required SHF channel frequency. FM deviation present at the modulator will be directly translated to the output frequency. FM noise is inherently easier to control with this system concept as the pump generator largely responsible for generation of the microwave frequency is un-modulated and can have a narrow loop bandwidth. In addition, deviation is unaffected by the mixing process, and modulator noise contribution is hence not magnified (as with subsequent multiplication in the direct modulation system). Perhaps the greatest advantage is yielded by the constancy of a 70MHz modulator signal irrespective of the required SHF output frequency, which can be independently adjusted by changing the pump frequency. Availability of a 70 MHz interface in the transmitter permits the local modulator to be replaced by a compatible signal derived from the IF of a preceding receiver when required, so true non-demodulating repetition is now possible. On the surface then, this transmission concept eliminates all the shortcomings of the direct modulation method for a modest increase in cost and physical size acceptable in point-to point portable applications. However, a new disadvantage now arises which greatly limits operational versatility of the single conversion concept. In realizing the SHF frequency, the pump frequency and unwanted sideband will also be present at the mixer output, only displaced by 70 and 140MHz respectively from the wanted signal. To remove the unwanted components, there exists the need for an output filter with very high rejection only 70MHz from the wanted sideband, but with a pass band of at least 20MHz to pass the FM modulation. While this is realizable, it restricts transmitter operation to a single SHF channel without filter change, a major deficiency in congested operating environments with multiple co-located systems and high RFI. The ultimate solution is achieved by double up-conversion, as shown in Figure 1.


Figure 1 Simplified schematics of the transmission concepts: (a) remodulating; (b) single conversion heterodyne; (c) dual conversion heterodyne.

The 70MHz first IF is retained to provide IF inject facilities at a repeater, but the first pump oscillator translates this to a second intermediate frequency rather than to the final SHF channel. (Frequencies between 300 MHz and 1.5 GHz are popular.) The requirement remains for a filter at the second IF frequency capable of rejecting the UHF pump frequency while not distorting the modulation band, but as the ratio of bandwidth to absolute frequency is now much greater, and since the second IF is a fixed frequency, this filter is easy to realise and its presence not restrictive to final system frequency agility. A second up-conversion then provides a modulated sideband at the required SHF channel. Rejection of the pump frequency is again required, but this time filter parameters are less stringent as pump offset will be significantly greater because of the higher IF. Indeed, it is quite possible to tune the second local Figure 1 Simplified schematics of the transmission concepts: (a) remodulating; (b) single conversion heterodyne; (c) dual conversion heterodyne. Oscillator over bandwidths up to 80% of the UHF local oscillator frequency without the pump signal encroaching as a spurious output. So now we have an elegant solution offering frequency agility, true IF repetition and excellent noise performance.


Receivers: Single and double conversion solutions are common (Figure 2). Down-conversion direct to 70MHz offers economy of design but, with an image frequency only 140MHz removed from the wanted signal, precludes operation without a relatively narrow band input filter. It renders frequency agility minimal (a similar situation to single up-conversion transmitters). Use of a higher IF would extend frequency agility of the receiver but at the expense of losing a 70MHz output for IF repetition.

Figure 2 Simplified schematics of the reception concepts: (a) single conversion heterodyne; (b) dual conversion heterodyne.


Operation of two or more independent links from a common antenna is now prevalent. Dual channels may be required for standby or for two separate vision channels, whilst a reverse channel for editing is also popular. Several methods of multiplexing (duplexing or diplexing) multiple RF signals onto one antenna have been explored by manufacturers. The most common are: filter/circulator, hybrid and bipolar. Filter/circulator multiplex:


Filter/circulator multiplexing is traditional (derived from fixed system philosophy). It has one valuable advantage of positively protecting receivers from RF interference and a more dubious one of assumed low transmission loss. However, this method also drastically restricts frequency agility, thus destroying the most popular feature of wide-band tuning now available on most modern links. In basic form, filter/circulator multiplexing is shown in the block schematic of Figure 3. The filter is chosen to have a pass-band for T1. T1 output passes through the filter influenced only by its insertion loss and any minor distortions dictated by limitations of filter bandwidth. Generally, a group delay equalized filter with bandwidth 28MHz to the _1 dB points will not significantly affect a (video 4 audio) modulation to CCIR Rec. 405 (B). It is perfectly acceptable to increase the bandwidth of this filter to accommodate some variation in T1 frequency, but at the expense of minimum channel spacing between T1 and T2. The reason for this becomes clear if the T2 transmission path is examined. T2 enters the circulator and passes clockwise to the next available port, which coincides with T1 entry via F1.T2 signal tries to exit from this port, but is reflected by the F1 filter (which will appear as a mismatch at F2) and re-enters the circulator to emerge again at the matched antenna port. Undistorted T1 signal flow relies on F1 appearing as a true short-circuit to F2 frequency (including its full modulation bandwidth). However, in practice T1 and T2 frequencies may not be displaced adequately to guarantee uniform reflection for F2 modulated bandwidth from the filter F1. In this case F2 will Figure 5.2.2 Simplified schematics of the reception concepts:

Figure 3 Filter/circulator multiplex schematic (a), showing the effect as the FM signal traverses the slope of the filter (b).

Microwave Links for OB:


Reflect from the skirt of filter F1 causing progressive phase distortion as the FM signal traverses the slope and encounters a varying return loss and phase effect. Increasing the skirt slope of the F1 filter by adding sections will improve distortion on the bounced channel, but only at the expense of insertion loss to the T1 transmission path. A typical filter would employ five sections with 0.81.2 dB insertion loss. Increasing the filter to six sections would steepen the skirt slope but typically add 0.5 dB loss. It will be noted from Figure 3(a) that the simplest multiplex circuit as illustrated is handed, i.e. it would not be possible to swap the receiver multiplexer to the transmitter terminal (or vice versa) without physically changing the filter to another circulator port. In practice this would represent a severe operational limitation, and multiplexers therefore typically include filters in both ports, as shown in Figure 4. Positive interference rejection is given to both receivers by this arrangement and, when required, the same equipment complement can of course be operated bidirectional. However, multiplex insertion loss on a full hop now rises to a practical minimum of two filters at, say, 1.0 dB each plus three circulator passes at 0.3 dB each, giving a total of 2.9 dB. These are the minimum likely losses and may not be realizable in practice due, for example, to mechanical constraints on layout, waveguide components, etc. So it will be seen that the presumed advantage of low loss in filter/circulator multiplex is not in practice very significant when compared with other methods.

Figure 4 Schematic of multiplexes with filters in both ports.


Figure 5 Variations of filter/circulator multiplex: (a) bandwidths increased to encompass a wide subband; (b) multi-channel combining arrangements.

In an attempt to regain some limited frequency agility, two variations of filter/circulator multiplex are possible (see Figure 5): Using the same multiplex arrangement, filter bandwidths are increased from one channel of, say, 30MHz to encompass a wide sub-band. As filter bandwidth increases, skirts become proportionally more shallow for any given number of filter elements, so it is not possible to divide the available band directly into two usable sections without a protection bandwidth of typically 15% mid-band. Alternatively, multi-channel combining arrangements are quite practical (subject to size constraints) and can be constructed with a mixture of channel and sub-band elements tailored to offer the best user versatility for a particular environment and available operating frequencies. Such multiplexers are reversible between transmit and receive, so any combination of go/return traffic can be accommodated. Hybrid multiplex: Provided the receivers in use are of double conversion superheat design and may therefore be operated in reasonable RF interference environments without


external channel filters (or, alternatively, if the receivers are fitted with integral channel filters), hybrid combination and separation provides a cheap, wideband and physically small solution. There will of course be a minimum theoretical loss over a full path comprising two such multiplexers of 6 dB with this method (typically 7 dB). However, when judged against the practical performance achieved by the filter circulator multiplex solution, the additional loss is unlikely to jeopardize significantly the overall system noise except at extreme range. Hybrid multiplexing may not offer inter-port isolation and would therefore be unsuitable for duplex (bidirectional) operation unless receivers are separately protected by filters to prevent front-end damage from the high incident power of the adjacent transmitter. Bipolar multiplex: Strictly, bipolar systems are not multiplexed at all. They operate from dual feeds which happen to share a common reflector and therefore behave as two single links. Bipolar advantages and disadvantages fall some way between filter/circulator and hybrid options. The bipolar approach offers wide-band operation without any of the losses inherent in the 3 dB hybrid or filter/circulator multiplex solutions. Price is not dissimilar overall to a hybrid multiplexer, and without filter constraints no multiplexing distortions arise. However, bipolar operation is only conditionally able to support bidirectional operation without filter protection as antenna interport isolation will be limited even in the best designs to around 50 dB. In practice, as system frequency increases, achievable transmission output power reduces, and the physical elements of the feed become smaller so that higher inter-port isolations are more realizable within the feed. The net effect of these parameters is to progressively reduce bleed energy from a transmitter into its adjacent receiver and to render bidirectional bipolar operation more practical in the higher frequency bands. Bidirectional bipolar operation without receiver filter protection always has an element of risk, as antenna inter-port isolations can be significantly modified by the presence of local reflecting surfaces such as safety barriers or tower legs. Careful positioning of systems with respect to local obstructions is important in optimizing system performance. Some advantages and disadvantages of the various multiplexing options discussed are summarized in Table 1. In practice, combinations of the options discussed above can provide highly versatile packages which may be configured quickly on-site for multiple transmission requirements. An example of a hybrid/filter/bipolar combination is shown schematically in Figure 6 and a practical realization of such a system in Figure 7.


Table 1: Advantages and disadvantages of multiplexing methods Type Advantages Disadvantages


Wide-band Compact Cheap Close adjacent channel use without distortion

High loss Diplex only unless used in association with filters or bipolar antenna


Wide-band No multiplexing loss No additional space required (integral to feed) Relatively cheap Close adjacent channel use without distortion Can be designed for any combination of multiple or two-way traffic with minimal interference risk

Conditional diplex operation unless receivers are filter protected

Filter/ circulator

Restricted bandwidth operation Relatively high cost Less compact Distortion when used with very close adjacent channels

Figure 6 Hybrid/filter/bipolar multiplexer (arranged for 2_bidirectional channels).


Figure 7 Three-channel mobile with remote control, hybrid multiplexer and bipolar feed, and 1.1m antenna.


Point-to-point: This category of link is required to operate over very long ranges (typically in excess of 50km). It may well be co-sited with several other systems at starter or repeater sites when a major event is to be televised and is therefore potentially subject to high RF interference. In general, therefore, point-to-point operation of mobile links demands high antenna efficiency and a good polar diagram (see Figure 8) at the expense of some portability. Derivations of parabolic antennas are generally chosen to provide high gain with narrow beam width, low side-lobe radiation and best front-to-back ratio.


Figure 8 Polar diagram for a 7 GHz 1.1 m antenna.

Several manufacturers prefer offset paraboloids, which have the advantage of better clearance over local obstructions such as safety barriers, and lower aperture blocking if the feed is offset. However, it is doubtful if these advantages outweigh the relatively lower gain, increased mechanical complexity, storage difficulties and manufacturing cost over a simple centre-fed solution. Since most mobile links operate in reasonable line-of-sight conditions, linear polarization is traditional and still generally favored, although circular polarization is now sometimes used at lower frequencies. Table 2 lists typical antenna size, frequency band and gain for use in the specimen path calculations.
Table 2 Parabolic antenna sizes versus gain for various frequency bands

Antenna size
ft 2 4 6 (8) (10) (12) m 0.6 1.2 1.8 (2.4) (3.0) (3.7) 2 18.7 24.7 28.2 30.7 32.8 34.2 2.5 20.6 26.6 30.2 32.6 34.6 36.2 3.5 23.6 29.6 33.2 35.6 37.6 39.2 5.5 27.6 33.6 37.0 39.6 41.6 43.0 7 29.6 35.6 39.1 41.6 43.6 45.1 8.5 31.3 37.3 40.8 43.3 45.2 46.8

Gain (dB) at frequencies 223 (GHz)

10 32.8 38.8 42.2 44.8 46.7 48.2 13 35.0 41.0 44.4 47.0 49.0 50.4 14.5 35.9 41.9 45.4 47.9 49.9 23 39.8 45.9


Chapter 14

OB Vehicles Design Aspects

Evolution of OB Vehicles and Mobile Control Rooms

Bringing outdoor events into the living room of the viewer is becoming more and more common. In order to record these events, be they sport, a concert or an important national event or ceremony, there is more and more reliance on the use of the outside broadcast or OB vehicle. Where these vehicles were once small control rooms on wheels, the move has been to build Super Vehicles which are equipped for multi-camera/multi-recording situations. The design and construction of these vehicles requires a considerable concentration of effort from a group of designers, each a master of his or her own expertise in a particular aspect of the vehicle, which as a team come together to build this mammoth mobile television control room of the road. Digital technology has in the last decade significantly advanced and this has had an impact on vehicle design, features and facilities. Apart from the high picture quality, the reduction in size of systems, married with lower power demands and less heat, have made the OB vehicle design become more relaxed in terms of weight and power consumption, allowing the designers to pay more attention to the amount of equipment which can be fitted, as well as special finishing such as expanded sides and


Increasing the comfort of the operational areas. The ubiquitous microprocessor has become more and more common in all equipment within the vehicle, such as cameras, vision mixer, DVEs, VTRs and so on. However, it has also appeared in other areas of the vehicles for power control and air-conditioning, even into the advanced leveling and jack systems employed in some vehicles today.. However, with the advances in semiconductor technology and the common usage of microprocessors, the operational and technical staff can now spend more time on production issues, in the safe mind that the equipment will report a problem through its self-monitoring system in the unlikely event a problem should arise. It is with this security in technology, lower power consumption and also better operational areas that the staff on board these control rooms of the road can spend many hours making that vital recording of that important event.

Vehicle Design:
Designing an OB vehicle is dependent on four factors. These are: Vehicle purpose; Choice of chassis and overall dimensions; Country of destination; Extent of facilities.

Let us look at each of these factors in turn.

Vehicle purpose: It may sound slightly absurd to start this section by questioning the vehicle purpose; with the wide range of chassis types, from panel van through to tractor and trailer unit and also including bus chassis, there are indeed a wide range of chassis types on which to build the OB vehicle upon. The decision to build a vehicle is not only an issue of what technical inventory it should carry but also what work it should be used for and also what road conditions it may encounter.


In some of the cities in Europe, the streets are so narrow and afford little turning area for taking a trailer-based vehicle that the choice may well have to be for a smaller fixed chassis to be able to negotiate these streets. Likewise, if the final destination is going to be a desert location, a trailer vehicle is out of the question, but more relying on a four-wheel chassis and a panel van chassis may be the ideal selection, accepting the lack in most cases of fourwheel drive, but this type of chassis may well be ideal for the conditions. A standalone generator may also be required in some situations as the availability of electricity may be reduced or not reliable enough both in terms of availability but also in quality. The use of bus chassis has provided some interesting approaches to design and construction. Without deviating from the basic chassis offered and taking into account the lower Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW), some very excellent designs and implementations have been achieved using these chassis. There is no golden rule of thumb for the selection of the chassis other than the choice should be made to reflect not only the end destination, but also the implied use that the vehicle will be put to. Choice of chassis and overall dimensions: A chassis of whatever size, for use on the roads anywhere in the world, must legally comply with the legal requirements of that country. In order to ensure compliance the recruitment of a local consultant, versed in the laws and regulations of that country, is an incredibly good investment. It is the consultants role to ensure that the chassis is acceptable in that country and meet the traffic laws of that country. An additional responsibility to ask of the consultant is to ensure that the after-sales services exist for the chassis and tractor unit in the destination country. Should the vehicle need service or spare parts, being able to supply them locally is mandatory. The longer the vehicle remains off the road it is not making any revenue, so availability of service and parts is crucial. There are considerable regulations concerning the height of lamps, lens colours, positions of reflectors and many more items. Throughout the world, these regulations do vary quite considerably, mainly determined by whether the vehicle will be driven on the left or right hand side of the road. In some countries the axle weight is subject to legislation concerning the maximum weight limit on the rear axle. It is important that the weight on the axle does not exceed the maximum loading as defined by the manufacturer. In order to ensure compliance, the weight distribution within the vehicles must be observed. It is important that, during the initial design phase, the weight loadings are calculated for the vehicle. These calculations should take into account all the equipment, cables, camera accessories, VTRs, etc. with respect to where the equipment will finally be located with the vehicle. The centre of gravity of the vehicle should also be kept as low as possible by restricting overhead weight to essential items only and


making full use of skirt lockers for housing compressor motors and similar heavy units. Calculations should also take into account air-conditioning units, isolation transformers, batteries and other items. Last, but by no means least, the weight of the coachwork making up the body of the vehicle together with all its fittings and materials must be calculated and added to the technical equipment weight, to give the payload. It is this payload that will figure prominently in deciding upon which chassis the body is to be built. The result should be a balanced chassis; nose not dipping down indicating excess front axle load and equally not tail heavy. In addition, the vehicle should not be listing from either side. Upon completion, the vehicle should be weighed. However, at this point this is too late to make any corrections in the weight as the weight calculations should have already indicated the total weight with the vehicle weighting being no more than a confirmation of the design calculations. in contact and bearing on the road surface through the tyres. This combination includes the entire technical and nontechnical payload and includes the weight of the chassis. The manufacturers design of the chassis will also take into account the types, springs and other items that are represented by GVW and incorporating an appropriate margin of safety. In normal commercial use the all-up weight can be allowed to approach the GVW limit since the payload will vary from day to day or week to week depending upon the vagaries of the type of work involved. This variable duty will allow the suspension a degree of recovery, since heavy abuse of the springs on one journey will be compensated by a lighter load or perhaps no load at all on the next journey. A TV OB vehicle has a permanent load which, by the very nature of its role, will never or hardly ever vary. Therefore, care should be taken to make sure that the curbside weight of the fully loaded vehicle is not much more that 80% of the GVW. This will ensure a good handling characteristic to the driver and will allow some degree of liveliness from a medium-sized engine in the range of chassis under consideration. It should also allow the suspension to still exercise its prime duty of shock absorption over bad road surfaces without bottoming. As an example, consider a rigid (a vehicle with the cab and body on the same chassis) TV OB vehicle that is required to house six colour cameras and five cassette-based VTRs, and it is to be equipped to a high standard in terms of peripheral equipment. Demountable bodies are now a new approach to traditional coach building. This system allows the coach-built bodywork with all its technical equipment to be disengaged and raised above the chassis by means of inbuilt hydraulic or mechanical jacks placed at each corner of the body, allowing the chassis to be driven away from underneath. The chassis-less body is then lowered to near ground level to become a static studio control room. This concept is of interest for the following reasons: 1. The unit can be taken to a site, demounted and left as a fully operational unit for days or weeks on end where continuous long-term coverage of events is


required. This system has even been used in a naval capacity, where the demounted body has been slung aboard ship and taken to sea. 2. If two or more units are operated, then only one chassis with engine and driver is needed to deploy them. 3. For detailed chassis maintenance and inspection purposes, removal of the chassis away from the body creates greater access. 4. Only the bodywork need be constructed at the factory. The chassis may be locally supplied by the end-user and united with the body upon its arrival. This could have important tax and import duty advantages to the end-user. 5. Where chassis delivery is protracted, the bodywork may be constructed independently, thus cutting down on the overall delivery time.

Country of destination: Air-conditioning requirements within the vehicle will be wholly determined by the climate in which it is to be operated. A hotter climate means that more on-board air-conditioning equipment will be necessary for a given number of operators and for technical heat dissipation as well as any heat gains. Physical construction of the vehicle will affect the heat retention or loss. Increasing the number of airconditioning units that are carried on a vehicle increases the payload penalty. Since one air-conditioning unit having an output of 6000 kcal/h (24,000 Btu/h) will weigh about 100 kg and with the typical number of such units for a larger vehicle being at least four, then a weight penalty of between 400 and 500 kg can be expected. Outside Broadcast Vehicles and Mobile Control Rooms. To assess the necessary size of the air-conditioning system, the following information is required to perform the heat calculations: 1. The structural heat gain of the bodywork. The structural materials and construction of the walls, roof and floor must be identified and allocated a U value. 2. The internal dimensions and areas of the vehicle where air-conditioning is to be applied.


3. The setting of an acceptable interior temperature and humidity based upon the country of destination. 4. The heat dissipation of all equipment within the vehicle. This will be based mainly upon the technical equipment power consumption. 5. The occupancy level of the vehicle as an operational average. 6. The interior lighting heat dissipation. 7. The inclusion or otherwise of a roof platform. The roof platform (item 7) in the above list is an example where occasionally two factors come together to assist each other rather than oppose. A roof platform may be called for in the specification to provide a high-level vantage point for cameras, commentators or even for a microwave link. By spacing the platform off the actual roof of the vehicle by about 50mm and allowing a free flow of air to circulate beneath it, a very real assistance is given to the overall efficiency of the air-conditioning system, since the platform then acts as a solar shield. It can be seen that an overall sensible heat gain figure has to be matched to an air-conditioning unit, or units, which are capable of rejecting that figure. It is worth mentioning that taking the cubic interior capacity of the vehicle and dividing this by 60 will return the number of clean air changes that will occur within the interior of the vehicle. In practice, the rejection figure will normally exceed the sensible heat gain figure by around 20% in order to take care of latent heat gains due to deliberate external fresh air intake and heat gain from the opening of exterior doors, etc. during operation, which is an additional figure to heat gains through the bodywork. By selecting a suitable air-conditioner to handle the interior heat gain, note should be taken of both its start-up current and normal running current for future calculations on required power intake to the vehicle. A useful guide is to note that generally the start current, lasting about 1 second, is about 34 times the normal run current. Due to these high peak currents upon switch-on of the compressor motor, the practice is now to allow the motor to continue to run for as long as the main power is switched on. If this were not so, then continued heavy short duration pulses of intake current as the motors started up and stopped each time in response to the environmental demands would reflect back upon the vehicle technical power circuits, causing equipment supply voltage variations at the least. It is also worth remembering that on initial switch-on the units will demand the same start current characteristics. If the vehicle has a number of compressors and evaporators, then switching all the units on at the same time can cause monumental problems in practical operation. To overcome this issue, the airconditioning plant is normally started up in timed turn-ons by staggering the time between switch-on and is normally implemented by placing timers to control the time period on each air-conditioning plant. In order to allow the compressor motor to run continuously an alternative method has been developed which varies the cooling demand. This is the hot gas bypass system. In this system a solenoid valve is placed across the vehicle interior evaporator coil and external


compressor and is opened by the interior thermostat when the required vehicle interior temperature has been achieved. This allows the hot gas from the compressor to be routed direct to the evaporator rather than going through the cooling process of the external condenser coil and thus allows the evaporator temperature and hence the interior temperature to rise, in turn creating a demand for cooling. The solenoid valve is then closed by the thermostat and hot gas is routed to the condenser coil, cooled, liquefied and passed through the evaporator coil in the normal way, where it absorbs heat from and therefore cools the vehicle interior. This cycle continues with the compressor motor running continuously. In the hot gas bypass mode it is normal for the total cooling capacity of the system to be reduced by more than 60% which, if the system has been sized correctly, will allow the interior temperature to build up and cause the cooling demand requirement to re-occur. It is therefore most important that the equipment selected for this cooling process is not excessively oversized. If there is overspecification on the air-conditioning, this cycle of allowing the interior heat buildup will not occur and the complete system will eventually ice up and malfunction. Common use is made of the split system of configuration for deployment of airconditioners. Here the evaporator coil with its fan is physically separated from the condenser coil and compressor, the units being connected only by rigid pipe work or, more usually for vehicles, a flexible pressure hose having a low effusion rate or loss for the refrigerant to be used (normally Freon, R22). The advantage of a split system for vehicles is that the evaporator unit can be sited within areas inside the vehicle, where it is able to perform efficiently in terms of providing conditioned air flow. The compressor/condenser unit, on the other hand, requires access to an external air flow for cooling purposes and in any case is a source of noise and vibration. It is therefore normally located external to the operational shell, usually in a side skirt locker, and suitably treated to reduce both of these factors. To ensure efficient operation of the air-conditioning system, all filters and radiator matrixes must be kept clean and free from a build-up of dust. Once a system has been charged and commissioned under operational conditions there is little else requiring attention, but as with all things mechanical, regular inspection of the system should be scheduled at specified intervals. It is important to consider the way that the conditioned air is delivered into the operational areas. A direct flow of cold air from the evaporator unit via front, side or overhead outlets is not to be recommended for operational areas as the occupants will raise objections to the resultant draughts at ear, eye and top of the head levels! A more sophisticated approach is to deliver the conditioned air overhead via a perforated ceiling. This ensures a very much more indirect delivery and satisfies the environmental criterion of moving a large mass of cold air relatively slowly. Just as important as air delivery is air return. Any air delivered into an area must eventually find its way back to the evaporator; otherwise the system will be


starved of air circulation. It is also a prerequisite that a portion of fresh air is mixed with the circulating air to prevent stale air building up inside the vehicle. Unless there are items of equipment on board which are specifically temperature conscious, the normal practice for interior air circulation is to first deliver the air to the operational areas and then take the return air via the electronic equipment, usually housed in 19 in (482 mm) equipment racks. This ensures that the slightly warmer air, or more accurately the less cold air, than that delivered directly from the evaporator unit is passed through the equipment last and helps to prevent undesirable condensation forming on the equipment. Thus, the priority in terms of environment is that of treating the operational areas first and the technical equipment second. Not all that long ago the reverse would have been the case; this reflects the way that component manufacturing techniques have eliminated the heat problems of the 1950s and 1960s. Hot daytime temperatures are often accompanied by low night temperatures and it is equally important to ensure that when the outside temperature falls below an acceptable minimum there is sufficient heat capability on board the vehicle to provide human comfort. This can be achieved by incorporating heater elements within the air-conditioning units on the premise that heating and cooling will not be required simultaneously. However, this would probably result in heated air being discharged at roof level, perhaps by means of a perforated ceiling. This is contrary to natural thermal circulation and not conducive to a healthy environment. A more acceptable alternative is to place electric fan heaters at low level within the vehicle or to use a natural fuelled system of warm air heating. Such units will run on a variety of fuels, such as diesel, gas-oil, propane, etc., and will discharge the resultant warm air through purpose-built ducting within the vehicle to low-level outlets placed in the operational areas. Since they can be operated from low-voltage dc batteries, they are independent of mains electrical power and can therefore operate when such power is not available on site. If the main vehicle engine is a diesel, then quite often the warm air heater is chosen to be diesel operated and will take its fuel from the vehicle tank. By siting the take-off feed near the half capacity point, the heater will shut off when that point is reached, leaving enough fuel in the tank for the vehicle to reach its fuelling point safely. For very cold climates, recourse is sometimes made to a centrally heated hot water system of distribution within large vehicles, the heated water circulating to domestic radiators placed in the operational areas. One final point is the use of air-conditioning units in environments where the mains power is inclined to dip or run below the normal operating voltages. This can happen and the effect for the air-conditioning is that the compressors will be placed under such a strain that they will burn out. This can be very expensive as it is not just a matter of replacing the motors in each compressor, but also replacing the gas as well as re-balancing the system. This therefore can be extremely expensive. Under/over-voltage relays can be fitted to each compressor to remove the problems, as explained earlier.


Extent of facilities: The provision of the technical facilities placed on board the vehicle will dictate the overall size of that vehicle. Large deployments of cameras and VTRs, a larger sound desk, more operators and engineering staff in turn increase the demands for a greater air-conditioning capacity and an increased GVW of the vehicle. Initial requirements and design objectives should not lose sight of the original requirements during the constructional phase. Additional items of equipment can be added to the system and even to alter the mode of the vehicle during the building, such that the margins hopefully allowed for during the planning stage are steadily eroded away. In extreme cases, it is not unknown for an extra loadbearing axle to have to be added at a late stage in construction with consequent disruption of the delivery time-scale and endless arguments as to how the situation arose. Some overweight can be compensated for by adding additional springs or indeed stiffening the springs. However, this can only really be done on a rigid vehicle. A useful way of monitoring the weight of the vehicle as construction proceeds is to place a load-bearing pad under each wheel, which gives readout in kilograms. This will not only give an overall picture of axle loading as a percentage of the maximum, but also indicate the lateral or side-toside weight loading. One of the first things to be done is to install an electrical infrastructure with both a non-technical and technical supply wired into the van. The non-technical supply is, as its name implies, for those items which are not used for technical equipment. Therefore, this supply can be used for items such as air-conditioning, battery chargers, lighting and power outlets in the interior of the van. The technical supply is normally fed via an AVR or Automatic Voltage Regulator, designed to maintain the technical voltage at the normal operating value. From the output of this unit, the technical equipment is supplied and this unit ensures the voltage is always held constant on the output regardless of any voltage fluctuations on the input. In some countries, regulations may require the installation of an Isolation Transformer. Supply to the vehicle can either be singlephase or three phase. Indeed, in some installations, inputs for both single- and three-phase are often fitted. Electrical safety and protection in an OB vehicle is very important. The use of RCCBs (Residual Current Circuit Breakers) on the input of the vehicle is important, as in essence this is an electrical installation which is operating outside the normal safeguards of a building. An additional device that should also be considered on the input of the vehicle, prior to the mains input breaker, is a Phase Indication of the incoming mains. When the vehicle is initially connected on-site, there is always the risk of the connection being made unintentionally incorrect. This device will quickly alert the engineers to the error, allowing the correction to be made without harm to the vehicle. Inside the vehicle, non-technical and technical outlets can be easily distinguished from each other by using differently coloured outlet plates, aluminum for one and brass


for the other. The main switching for the equipment is controlled from a central resource, a mains distribution unit, which incorporates meters for mains voltage, current and frequency, with a switch to switch between input and output. The supplies to each rack or racks of equipment are controlled from circuit breakers, rated to the current in each rack with an overhead so that the breakers are not operating on the edge of the supply. In some cases, mains electricity may need to be run to other equipment in remote locations from the OB vehicle for example, for a commentators box and monitor. These supplies need to use waterproof connections and are protected with an RCCB on each connector. It does not need overstating that the dangers of electricity and in particular the risk can be greater without adherence to good planning and proper installation practices. Adherence to the latest IER Electrical Installation requirements is mandatory. Outline of Constructional Techniques for TV Mobiles: Whereas mobile OB units built in the 1950s used a considerable amount of hardwood for their framework, following the trend of most commercial vehicle box bodies of that period, the 1960s saw the move to aluminium for both framing and skinning of specialist vehicles, bringing with it a much needed reduction in body weight. This trend has continued to the present day, with the only other real departure of note being the occasional use of a glass fiber or GRP sandwich construction for large expanses of side wall, supplemented by conventional construction for underskirt lockers, main entry doors and other similar areas. The construction of an OB mobile starts off on the drawing board in the proposal stage, where consideration must be given to operational ergonomics, airconditioning requirements and technical equipment housing based upon a known chassis. If this proposal is accepted then more detailed dimensional drawings of vehicle layout plan and elevations are made. From these, the various extrusion types and lengths, aluminum paneling and indeed all the many hundreds of items which go to make up the finished vehicle are listed. These comprise the material schedules which enable orders to be placed with suppliers. Since the timescale for the construction of a large TV mobile from placement of order to finished vehicle may be between 4 and 5 months, it is necessary to keep track of the various stages of construction for the benefit of the customer as well as the builder. To this end, use is made of the familiar bar chart, where the x-axis represents the time element, usually calibrated in week numbers, and the y-axis the 25 or so benchmarks of the construction from chassis modifications through to painting and sign writing. The skeletal framework of aluminum is built upon aluminum transverse cross bearers, these in turn being bolted to the aluminum bearers running the length of the chassis and coincident with the vehicle chassis main steel members. To provide a degree of give between the steelwork of the


chassis and the coach-built body, a semi-resilient packer is sandwiched between the two. This give factor is very important for specialist vehicles, since it allows the various sections of the body to maintain their positions relative to each other as the vehicle settles down over its life. It is important to choose construction materials that are not going to be problematical in tropical climates. Any hardwood used must be treated against attack by insects and a humid atmosphere, whilst fabrics should be wholly man-made and not derived from natural sources. Corrosion of metal fittings and screws used on external surfaces is best prevented by the use of stainless steel wherever possible. Otherwise, heavy chrome on brass will resist attack provided that the quality of plating is good. When the detailed drawing is complete, the framework is in effect built from inside to out. Thin aluminum sheet or exterior grade 6mm plywood is fixed via a thermal break to the inside of the aluminum framework with a 50mm build-up of very light but high thermal insulation material placed so that every cavity between the inner and the as yet absent outer aluminum skins will be completely filled. An alternative technique is to use a polyurethane foam sprayed into the cavity. Whichever method is used it is important to ensure that the result gives as high a U factor as possible to the body shell. Similar treatment must be applied for the same reasons to the roof and the floor, but within these areas provision must be made for cable ducts in the floor and for delivery of conditioned air within the ceiling. If the preferred method of air delivery is via a perforated ceiling, then a suitably sized duct must be formed immediately below the insulated roof, faced on its lower level by perforated sheet. Such sheet will be of aluminium and should be treated with some form of anti-condensate finish. To avoid air turbulence and hence noise within the ducts there may of course be more than one such duct within the ceiling void, depending upon the air-conditioning specification they must be lined with non-toxic polyurethane sheet foam. Prior to the external skinning of the vehicle it will be necessary to provide electrical conduits within the walls for all mains services for general and operational lighting switches, power outlet points and also for the various dc services such as skirt locker lighting, emergency lighting, compressors for any pneumatically operated telescopic masts, fire, smoke and other warning systems, and so on. By now a roof platform, if called for, will have been constructed off-line and then fixed to the roof to give a 50mm air gap, as described earlier. Equipment racks, partitions and console will have been constructed, and the airconditioning equipment will have been installed and internal finishes will have started. To give an acceptable aesthetic finish and at the same time provide a reasonably warm acoustic feel to the interior, a high-quality man-made carpet is applied to the interior wall. The desk surfaces will have been treated with one of the many laminate finishes now available and apertures cut to accept the various sizes and shapes of the equipment to be positioned within them, edged with either a hardwood or an aluminium trim. Hardwood or soft cushioned edging will


be fixed to the fronts of the various desks, and decisions on the type and positioning of fire extinguishers and first aid boxes will signal the end stages of coach building. The interior should be vacuumed out and the floor covering protected for the next stage of the construction. This will be the technical installation of all necessary cables and equipment in accordance with the schedules, which will have been prepared in parallel with the coachwork construction. Hopefully, the end of the constructional phase will coincide with the start of the installation phase, ensuring a gradual change of emphasis in the work content from mechanical construction to technical installation. After this phase and preferably before commissioning and acceptance trials, the final stage in the coach-built activity is painting and sign writing. Sometime during the building phase, and forming one of the many bars on the bar chart, will be the need to obtain the customers requirement for the paint finish in terms of colour and coach line positions, as well as for sign writing of the station identification lettering and logos. Also, such things as tyre pressures, fuel identification, paint specification, vehicle length, height and width must all be determined and inscribed on or in the vehicle as appropriate. If coach building only is the contractual requirement, then (as mentioned earlier) it is necessary to drive the vehicle to a public weighbridge and take front and rear axle loadings plus overall loading. The weighbridge tickets should then be handed over with the vehicle to the customer for his own processing of the necessary documentation to register the vehicle for road use. If the contract is a turnkey, whereby both coach building and the technical installation are carried out by the one contractor, then weighing should be made of the finished coach-built vehicle before the technical installation and again at the point prior to delivery. This will provide a useful record for future use, but as pointed out earlier, if continual weight monitoring can be integrated into the constructional phase by the use of load pads then this is by far the best way to avoid embarrassing last minute weight problems.

Prepared at: DDK, Ahmedabad (Shri Ramesh Tale, Assistant Engineer & his team) Edited at: STI (T), Delhi