This is the second time I have installed one of these liquid-cooled transmitters. This time, it is for WVPS in Burlington, VT. WVPS is the flagship station for Vermont Public Radio. The station is a full class C, a rarity in the North East. The transmitter is located on Mount Mansfield giving it a HAAT of 2,717 feet (828 Meters), which is a good way up.
This transmitter replaced the previous backup transmitter, a Harris Z16 unit from the early ’00s. There was nothing really wrong with this unit, it just was not a full power backup.
The new transmitter came in two pieces, which is typical for the 30 and 40 KW GatesAir liquid and air-cooled transmitters.
For the cooling part of this installation, 1 1/2 inch type M copper pipe was used. This matches most of the other TV transmitters down the hall. In the same building are the transmitters for WCAX-TV, WPTZ-TV, WFFF-TV, and WVNY-TV.
The highest point in the liquid-cooled system is the air purge valve and distribution manifold just above the transmitter. From here, everything slopes down to a few low points; the heat exchanger outside, the pump station, and the power blocks. This is to make it easier to drain if that ever needs to happen. There is also an air inlet valve to aid in draining.
All of the cooling work is controlled by the pump station. The fans are connected to VFD modules, which control the flow of air through the Heat Exchanger.
All of this plumbing work was greatly sped along with the use of this Pro Press pipe press tool. This thing is great! No more sweating connections. Dry fit a section to make sure that it is all cut correctly, then go to work with this and it is done in a matter of seconds. Of course, there are no re-dos, so the dry fit procedure is a little more important.
Prior to filling with Heat Transfer Fluid (50/50 water/antifreeze mix), the system was first pressure tested with air, then filled with clean water for a 12-hour flush. The water was drained out and the filter screen was cleaned, then it was filled with the appropriate Heat Transfer Fluid.
Final system checks, remote control test, and HTF top off and the transmitter is ready to go pending the HD Radio installation.