4. BROADCASTING FREQUENCY ASSIGNMENTS IN THE REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA

4.1 Sound Broadcasting Services

This subsection covers the frequency assignments for the sound-broadcasting services as defined by the ITU, for the categories used in the RSA, viz. VHF/FM and MF/AM. The description of the categories, their frequency tables and relevant definitions are given in the subsections to follow.

4.1.1 VHF/FM

The frequencies and associated information referred to in this section are given in appendix A and relate to the frequency plan as defined in ITU [1984].

The category includes all VHF/FM sound transmitting stations. VHF/FM stations are those, which make use of frequency modulation and which operate in the band 87.5 to 108.0 MHz.

The ITU plan provides for nominally six frequencies per transmitting site. At certain transmitting sites, seven or more frequencies have been assigned. This has been made possible by assigning so-called additional channels or by assigning more than one lattice node point to a station. There are a total of 204 frequencies available in the FM frequency Band.

Definitions of terms used in table

    Station name:

    The internationally coordinated name of the transmitting station. The name was decided upon using the following guidelines: In cases where the site is located in or near a city, major town or suburb is used. In cases where it is not located near a city or town the name of a relevant hill, mountain or other well-known geographical feature is used. In some cases, where a station name is used, the station does not yet exist, neither is there a development site. The station name in those cases is a provisional name that is associated with a theoretical lattice node point.

    Latitude and longitude:

    The nominal co-ordinates of the station in degrees and minutes south and east as contained in the ITU frequency plan. In those cases where a site has not yet been developed i.e. where the frequency is assigned to a theoretical lattice point, the co-ordinates are those of the theoretical point.

    Frequency (Freq):

    The frequency is specified in megahertz (MHz).

ERP:

The maximum effective radiated power. In the case of an omni-directional antenna it is the effective radiated power in any direction. In the case of a directional antenna it is the effective radiated power in the direction of maximum gain. The ERP is specified in either watts (W) or kilowatts (kW).

Polarisation (Pol):

The dominant polarisation mode of the transmitting antenna, which in the majority of cases is the only mode. The dominant polarisation is either horizontal (H) or vertical (V).

Programme Service (programme):

The programme service carried by the transmission. Some program services do not have codes and are listed by the full programme service name in the applicable appendix. The codes (where available) for the programme services are as follows:

 
  • 2000
Radio 2000
  • RSG
Radio Sonder Grense
  • RBOP
Capital Bop
  • CAP
Capital Radio
  • CISK
Radio Ciskei
  • METR
Radio Metro
  • WEZI
Ikwekwezi FM (Ndebele)
  • 5-FM
Five FM
  • RGHP
Radio Good Hope
  • SAFM
SAFM
  • SEDI
Lesedi FM (Sesotho)
  • SUN
Radio Sunshine
  • WALA
Ligwalagwala (Swazi)
  • NENE
Munghana Lonene (Tsonga)
  • MOTS
Motsweding FM (Setswana)
  • PHAL
Thobela FM (Venda)
  • LOBO
Umholobo Wenene (Xhosa)
  • HOZI
Ukhozi FM (Zulu)

The codes for the Private Service Programs are as follows:
  • ALGO
Radio Algoa
  • HVST
Highveld Stereo
  • JAKR
Radio Jacaranda
  • ORAN
Radio Oranje
  • KFM
KFM
  • ECR
East Coast Radio

On-air date:

The date on which the service came on the air. Where omitted the frequency is either available for future use at the station site or available for re-assignment to a site in the vicinity of the theoretical lattice point in the GE84 ITU plan (See definition of "Status"). In the case of some stations the on-air date is not available.

Status:

In this column it is indicated whether the frequency has been assigned to a station that is already operational (OP or OPE). Alternatively, it is indicated whether the frequency exists as either a spare frequency (SPA or SP), i.e. a frequency which may be used in the vicinity of an already developed site, or a frequency that may be used in the vicinity of a theoretical lattice node point.

A station status given as licensed (LIC or LI) has been licensed by the IBA but has not yet finalized technical parameters or begun broadcasting. LIC / LI is an intermediate stage between SPA / SP and OPE / OP.

A station status given as IBA indicates that an investigation in to the assignment of that frequency is in process.

Stations with a status of OP, SP or LI are stations in the national database which have not yet or are in the process of being internationally coordinated as per Geneva 89.

Category (Cat):

In this column, the categorization of the frequency assignment is given as follows:

  • PBS - Public Service Broadcaster as per the definition in chapter one of the IBA Act 153 of 1993.
  • PTE - Private Service Broadcaster as per the definition in chapter one of the IBA Act 153 of 1993.
  • COM - Community Service Broadcaster as per the definition in chapter one of the IBA Act 153 of 1993.
A blank category field indicates that the assignment has not been assigned to any service.

4.1.2 MF/AM

The frequencies and associated information referred to in this section are given in Appendix B and relate to the frequency band from 535,5 to 1606,5 kHz. Although the Republic of South Africa is not a signatory to the plan of ITU [1975] the frequency regulatory authority has always abided by the technical provisions laid down in the plan.

The category includes all medium-frequency amplitude modulation (MF/AM) type stations that exist in the Republic of South Africa. Frequencies assigned to theoretical stations and which are available for future use are also included. Refer to section 3.1 concerning limitations on community radio stations using MW.

Definition of terms used in table

Station name:

The standard name of the transmitting station. The name has been decided upon using the following guideline: In cases where the site is located or near a city or major town, the name of such city or town is used. In come cases, where a station name is used, the station does not yet exist, neither is there a developed site. The station name in those cases is a provisional name that is associated with the nearest city, town or suburb, Whether the name is provisional can be established from the entries in the "status" column. (See definition of "Status")

Latitude and longitude:

The co-ordinates of the station in degrees and minutes south and east. In those cases where a site has not yet been developed, i.e. where the frequency is assigned to a theoretical lattice point, the co-ordinates are those of the theoretical point.

Frequency (Freq.):

The frequency is specified in kilohertz (kHz).

EMRP:

The effective monopole radiated power. This is the power supplied to the antenna, multiplied by its gain referred to that of a short vertical antenna in the horizontal plane.

Programme Services (Programme):

The programme service carried by the transmissions. Some program services do not have codes and are listed by the full programme service name in the applicable appendix. The codes (where available) for the programme services are as follows:

 
  • CAP
Capital Radio
  • METRO
Radio Metro (SABC)
  • WEZI
Radio Ikwekwezi (SABC)
  • R702
Radio 702
  • RBOP
Radio Bop
  • WALA
Radio Ligwalagwala (SABC)
  • RTHO
Radio Thohoyandou
  • LOBO
Radio Umhlobo Wenene (SABC)

On-air date :

The date on which the service came on the air. Where omitted the frequency is either available for future use at the station site or available for assignment to a site in the vicinity of the theoretical lattice point that Sentech has been using (See definition of "Status").

Status:

In this column it is indicated whether the frequency has been assigned to a station that is already operational (OPE). Alternatively, it is indicated whether the frequency exists as either a spare frequency (SPA), i.e. a frequency which may be used in the vicinity of an already developed site, or a frequency that may be used in the vicinity of a theoretical lattice node point.

A station status given as licensed (LIC) has been licensed by the IBA but has not yet finalized technical parameters or begun broadcasting. LIC is an intermediate stage between SPA and OPE.

A station status given as IBA indicates that an investigation in to the assignment of that frequency is in process.

Category (Cat)

In this column, the categorization of the frequency assignment is given as follows:

  • PBS - Public Service Broadcaster as per the definition in chapter one of the IBA Act 153 of 1993.
  • PTE - Private Service Broadcaster as per the definition in chapter one of the IBA Act 153 of 1993.
  • COM - Community Service Broadcaster as per the definition in chapter one of the IBA Act 153 of 1993.
A blank category field indicates that the assignment has not been assigned to any service.

4.2 Television Broadcasting Services

This section covers the frequency assignments for the television broadcasting service as defined by the ITU. It covers the VHF and UHF bands.

The VHF band allocated to the RSA ranges from 174.0 to 254.0 MHz and is sometimes referred to as VHF Band III. It is to be noted that the allocation for the RSA and the neighboring states Botswana, Mozambique, Malawi, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Swaziland and Zambia extends to a higher frequency than the normal allocation for Region 1.

The UHF band ranges from 470.0 to 862.0 MHz. The allocation agrees with UHF Band IV and UHF Band V allocated to ITU Region 1. In the RSA, the band for television broadcasting only extends as far as 854 MHz. Above this, assignments have been made to other telecommunication services.

Frequencies and associated information contained in this category are given in Appendix D. They relate to the frequency plan as defined in the ITU plan for television broadcasting in mainly the African area, contained in ITU [1989].

Frequencies assigned to TV low power stations are invariably in the UHF band. Orthogonal polarisation, relative to that of high power stations, is used, in order to increase frequency usage as a result of reduced interference levels with orthogonal polarisation.

Definition of terms in table