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Archived — Notice No. SMBR-002-98

Radiocommunication Act

Notice No. SMBR-002-98: DTV (Digital Television) Transition Allotment Plan


Industry Canada announces publication of the DTV Transition Allotment Plan for public comment. The Plan is predicated on the use of the A/53 Digital TV Standard and is designed to provide for the introduction of DTV undertakings as well as continue to accommodate the existing NTSC undertakings during the transition period. Thereafter, DTV only will remain.

The allotment criteria which were used to develop the Plan are listed in the Preamble to the Plan.

The A/53 Digital Television Standard describes a system designed to transmit high quality digital video and audio as well as ancillary data over a 6 MHz channel. It was adopted as the DTV standard for Canada in Gazette Notice No. SMBR-004-97, "Adoption of Standard for Digital Television (DTV) Broadcasting in Canada," which was published on

DTV Transition Allotment Plan Principles

The DTV Transition Allotment Plan is based on principles developed in government/industry discussions, including relevant recommendations of the Task Force on the Implementation of Digital Television. These principles include the following:

  • DTV should be introduced as an eventual replacement service to analog NTSC services;
  • The Plan shall accommodate both NTSC and DTV broadcasting;
  • Planning parameters for DTV are based on implementation of the ATSC A/53 standard; and
  • A DTV allotment shall be provided for each regular and low power NTSC undertaking, and to each allotment to the extent possible.

Coordination with the United States

The plan was developed taking US DTV allotments and existing US regular NTSC stations into account.

As usual, allotments near the border area will need to be coordinated with the United States. Industry Canada has started discussions with USA officials in this regard in order to reduce incompatibilities as much as possible. Any resulting changes to the Plan will be announced after discussions are completed.

Final Plan

After the ultimate phase-out of NTSC, it is expected this DTV Transition Allotment Plan will be replaced by a new DTV Allotment Plan containing only DTV allotments. It is likely that in a number of cases the channels for these DTV allotments will be different from those for the DTV allotments in the transition plan.

The required core spectrum for the final DTV-only plan has yet to be determined. Operational experience from early implementation of DTV undertakings will help in determining the criteria to be used in the DTV-only plan.

Further Information

The DTV Transition Allotment Plan is available electronically on the Internet at the WWW address: for the English version and for the French version.

Submission of Comments

Interested parties may submit comments concerning the DTV Transition Allotment Plan to the Director General, Spectrum Engineering Branch, Industry Canada, 300 Slater Street, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0C8, or at the Internet address in the case of E-mail submissions.

Comments should be submitted no later than 90 days from the date of publication of this Notice. Comments received will be made available on written request to the Director General.

Dated at Ottawa

R. W. McCaughern
Director General
Spectrum Engineering Branch

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