Thales Announces PEARL PSIP Solution Supports Newly Approved ATSC A/76 PMCP Standard
January 7, 2005

by -- Thales Broadcast & Multimedia

Thales’ PEARL PSIP product suite now supports ATSC’s newly approved standard A/76 for Program Metadata Communications Protocol (PMCP). The PMCP standard allows seamless interface between the PSIP generator and the source of EPG data (automation / traffic system) via simple XML (eXtensible Markup Language) message documents using a standard Ethernet interface.
Thales’ PEARL product, built on a 1RU PC server platform, has been available with an XML interface for years -Thales first displayed this feature at the NAB show in 2003- but the recent standardization of PMCP makes this interface even more powerful for broadcast professionals. Thales’ engineers were instrumental in the development of a model XML interface and played a vital role on the subcommittee that wrote and ultimately received approval of A/76 PMCP.
Thales has recently upgraded the product catalog for PEARL so that customers can configure and purchase only the options necessary for their given application. Thales offers two standard configurations including a stand-alone version with ASI output for interface to any multiplexer and the “Smart Data Pack”. The Smart Data Pack solution takes advantage of Thales’ AMBER remultiplexer acting as a standalone PSIP injector and a carouseling device. Thales’ PEARL then uses an Ethernet link to the AMBER remux, providing inherent redundancy since the AMBER stores the PSIP tables and carousels the information into the final transport stream. The Smart Data Pack blends both software and dedicated hardware to provide the best of both worlds: flexibility and reliability.
Thales’ PEARL includes a powerful, yet easy to use editor for updates to the EPG information. Other features optionally available with PEARL include up to 16 days of EIT/ETT tables (4 days comes standard), multi-route functionality for station groups, and multi-source management. PEARL is available with standard interfaces to listing services such as Tribune Media Service and DecisionMark’s MediaStar, and now a PMCP input (traffic and automation systems) as well. PEARL can be ordered to handle multi-source management of these various inputs with prioritization and merging capabilities.
The FCC mandate for DTV stations to be in full compliance with PSIP occurs at the beginning of February, 2005. For more information on Thales’ PEARL PSIP solution, please contact : info@us.thales-bm.com


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