The BBC has awarded a contract to Energis to provide one network to carry its digital TV and another to support its new Electronic New Production System (ENPS).
The Energis network will enable the BBC to form national and regional digital BBC services, carried between Television Centre and the national regional centres in Glasgow, Cardiff and Belfast. As part of a phased project, Energis will also link BBC Television Centre to a further ten regional centres for the provision of digital broadcasting services to complete English regional coverage.
In addition, Energis will provide the transmission infrastructure for ENPS. This will give BBC journalists rapid and easy access via their PCs to archived text, voice and picture data covering all major news stories.
Energis will provide an integrated network solution network linking BBC sites with an Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) network.
Energis has been providing the BBC's core network for distributing all national TV and radio programmes since January 1995.
Mike Grabiner, chief executive of Energis, said: "The network rollout for the earliest phase of digital broadcasting is already underway following a year-long BBC trial of our ATM application. This will ensure that Energis has in place the necessary infrastructure to prepare the BBC effectively for the earliest digital broadcasting transmission, whether it be digital satellite, digital television or digital cable."
The BBC intends to start digital satellite radio broadcasting from April next year and digital television from September 1998. Digital cable will relay services provided by the other two media.
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