RTE Transmitter at Spur Hill, Cork (FM radio, TV)

NB Pictured in June 1998. Mast pictured here has since been replaced by a taller/wider one, see text below


Photos of Spur Hill (near Togher just to the South West of Cork city) taken in June 1998.
This site has been in use for RTE TV since the 1960s and RTE FM radio transmission since the mid-1980s, At very top of mast is a microwave link. Below these (see 2nd photo for best view) are 4 stacked FM band dipoles (vertical polarisation) . The (now five) national FM radio stations on 89.2 (RTE Radio 1), 91.4 (2FM), 93.6 (R na G), 98.8 (Lyric FM), 101.0 MHz (Today FM) are combined and fed into these with max ERPs of 5kW. The 89.2 for RTE Radio 1 also incorporated the RTE Radio Cork local opt-out station (discontinued on 31/1/2000).
Below these (go back to 1st photo for best view) can be seen the UHF 'panel antennas' for transmission of the national TV stations, RTE 1 on Ch53, Network 2 on Ch57, TV3 on Ch60, TnaG (now TG4) on Ch63 all horizontal polarisation. (TV3 was launched a few months after this photo was taken). The intended service area is roughly a 180 degree arc going from West-North-East. This UHF array (with max ERPs of 10 kW) were introduced in early 1996 (upping Spur Hill's status to a main transmitter!), intended to replace the unusual arrangement of lower powered UHF (Ch29,33) - to the City and VHF (Ch H,E) - to the West transposers from this site for the then 2 national TV channels RTE 1 and Network 2.
Below these can be seen the VHF TV array for RTE1 (CH H), the original assignment and still covering the original full service area, and Network 2 (Ch E) added in the early 1980s but beaming West only. VHF TV transmission was curtailed when the changeover to the new mast took place, with the VHF transmission of BOTH RTE1 and Net2 beaming west only, intended for certain areas not well served by the UHF.

Not in these photos Cork Ham radio operators have a '70cms' voice repeater and experimental ATV repeater on top of one of the buildings (as of 2000).

During the summer of 2001 RTE erected a new taller replacement mast alongside the existing mast. The work of installing aerials on the new mast did not start until early 2002. A distant picture (taken February 2002) of the new mast alongside the existing mast is below. The old mast was dismantled soon afterwards

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