By Marvin Baker, a new weekly column in The Kenmare News
Posted 6/20/17 (Tue)
Some years ago I ran across some information out of Utah that indicated homeowners on the west side of the Rocky Mountains were using passive reflector antennas to leap frog the TV stations from Salt Lake City over the mountains.
The idea is to have two identical TV antennas, mounted back to back with nothing more than a coax cable connecting them.
No electricity, no amplifiers, no transmitters, just two good, quality antennas with the right azimuth.
One of the antennas is pointed at the TV tower(s). The other is directly opposite. The first antenna will pick up the signal, send it through the wire to the second antenna, which in turn, “transmits” the signal over the mountains or into a valley.
A third antenna is positioned atop your house to receive the passively reflected signal.
I’ve wondered about this for the past 15 years and really haven’t done anything because I wasn’t sure it would work.
Then, I was reading some information that indicated the small town of
Just the other day though, I ran across a white paper regarding passive reflection that is being studied in
There’s actually research going on at the Mackenzie Presbyterian University in Sao Paulo that does indeed mathematically prove what I had long wondered.
OK, getting TV from 240 miles is highly unusual, but apparently passive reflection, called passive reception in
With that said, not all of us in the world are into Cable TV because we don’t want to pay for 57 channels with nothing on, as the song by Bruce Springsteen indicates.
I gave up cable years ago, but since the digital changeover in 2009, small markets can now enjoy a lot of variety.
So there are 19 channels now over the air coming out of
There’s another channel that’s just outside of reach, but based on what I’ve read from Mackenzie Presbyterian, it might be obtainable through passive reflection.
A website called TV Fool that allows you to see where TV signals are located on a color coded map, makes this intriguing.
What makes it even more interesting is that TV stations in rural parts of
And since analog signals have historically traveled farther over the air than digital signals, it is feasible.
The only drawback is that the farther away you are from an analog signal, the snowier the picture gets. With digital, you have a great picture or none at all.
So having learned what I did from
I was also able to obtain a Blonder Tongue pre-amplifier for channel 4 that is now “obsolete” in the
Now all I have to do is get two, or ideally three Wade antennas for channel 4, mount them and I should be able to watch CKYB, a CTV affiliate, despite it being 112 miles to my northeast. Prairie
Blonder Tongue and Wade are products used by Cable companies because of their professional quality and reliability.
I’m already picking up the
I’ve been fooling around with FM radio signals for the better part of 40 years with some incredible results. I think now it’s time to try TV and see if this passive reflection idea really works.