Maintenance Of Large CATV Systems (1971)

By Jack Long, Vice President-Engineering, Transvideo Corporation, A Division of Cox Cable Communications

The San Diego CATV System began operation in 1962. Today it is the largest system in the United States with more than 49, 000 subscribers and 660 miles of distribution plant. The system employs 64 technicians and installers and has a fleet of 51 trucks and vans. Three head-ends are needed to cover the area of the system. A Micro-wave link connects the system. to the origination studio. Two-way radio is used extensively for communications but also controls non-duplication switching of the three head--ends from a central point.

In 1970 the City of San Diego passed an Ordinance governing the performance of CATV systems within the city boundary. Some of the technical specifications of this Ordinance are shown in Figure 1. While these specifications seem very reasonable, it must be realized that these are minimums for any point in the system including the subscriber's termination. This fact, coupled with long amplifier cascades, make exceeding these specification minimum.s more difficult. During the nine years it has been in operation, Transvideo has developed maintenance methods and procedures which make it possible to accomplish this. The main areas of mainte-nance fall into seven categories which I will discuss briefly.

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