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RE: WBZ stereo?

WQEW has four towers all right but never uses more than 
three at one time. The east tower is a spare, used for 
10 kW ND operation when the other towers are being 
painted or otherwise maintained. Originally the east 
tower along with the two that are in line with it formed 
the night array, which was used from local sunset in 
Bakersfield CA to New York sunrise. The day array (used 
from New York sunrise to Bakersfield sunset) consisted 
of the center tower of the night array plus the south 

Seven or eight years ago, WQEW completely reconfigured 
its night array to use the west and center towers of the 
old night array plus the south tower, which had 
previously been used only by day. No change was made to 
the day array, which still uses the same two towers that 
had always been used by day.

The day pattern is a broad modified cardioid with 
generous null fill-in to the south. The null to the 
south is filled to the equivalent of 10 kW ND over about 
150 degrees. The points at which the daytime field 
strength is equivalent to 50 kW ND are pretty much due 
east and west. The daytime field strength is greater 
than 50 kW ND over almost 180 degrees to the north.

The signal doesn't reach places like Springfield by day 
because of the combination of terrible soil conductuvuty 
on Long Island and the fact that the high frequency 
(1560) is not conducive to long-distance transmission of 
groundwave signals. In fact, the signal is poor enough 
in central CT that it was possible to construct a 5 kW-D 
station on first-adjacent 1550 in Bloomfield CT, north 
of Hartford.

As you can probably imagine from the asymmetrical 
arrangement of the night towers, the night pattern is 
asymmetrical. It's a kind of bent figure eight with the 
more northerly lobe centered to the northeast and the 
southerly lobe centered more or less due south.

The old night pattern was symmetrical about the 
southwest-to-northeast line of the three towers in the 
old night array. It was pretty much a rotated version of 
the day pattern stretched along the line of the towers 
in the night array. The new night pattern is a lot less 
pretty looking than the old one, but having an on-site 
auxiliary antenna that is used strictly for auxiliary 
purposes has to outweigh the aesthetics.

Still, the great mystery to me is why WQEW remained in 
Long Island City at all when it increased to 50 kW in 
the late 50s or early 60s. The soil conductivity on Long 
Island is abysmal as WQEW's lousy signal readily 
demonstrates. 40 years ago, a move to the Jersey 
Meadowlands, which have the best soil conductivity in 
any major metropolitan area along the east coast, was 
eminently feasible.

WQEW's patterns (old and new) are a compromise. The 
major population center (Manhattan, Brooklyn, and most 
of Queens) lies to the west of the site and after 
Bakersfield sunset, WQEW is required to protect to the 
west. A Meadowlands site would have put the region of 
reduced radiation on the opposite side of the site (that 
is the west side) from the major population center. And 
the signal toward New York City would have been 
delivered over an area of outstanding soil conductivity. 
The move was a no brainer. I can't understand why it 
didn't happen.

Now, at least while the 1530 station in Elizabeth NJ is 
still on the air, a move to the Meadowlands is 
impossible because of prohibited overlap of 25 mV/m 
daytime contours. 1530 was granted and built an ex-Band 
station (on 1660) and so, in theory, 1530 will be 
required to go dark one day soon. But does anyone 
_really_ believe that will happen? If it ever were to 
happen, WQEW could likely find a home at one of the 
existing Meadowlands AM sites. WBBR, three of whose four 
towers are not too tall for 1560, seems like a good 

eFax 707-215-6367
> WQEW is 50,000 watts into four towers (I think they're placed in the shape
> of a parallelogram).  I don't know the exact pattern specs, though or what
> lobes go towards what directions. :)