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Wed March 3, 2010
Paducah WKMS Translator Changes Frequency - Now All Classical
By Kate Lochte
Murray, KY – Murray State University's listener supported public radio service WKMS-FM has changed the frequency and the programming on its Paducah translator, which is now carrying all classical music. The Paducah translator is now on 92.5 FM (formerly 92.1 FM) and is broadcasting the 24 hour classical channel also heard on 91.3 WKMS HD-2 and wkms.org including broadcasts of the Paducah Symphony Orchestra, concerts from Murray State University and listener favorites like From the Top and Sunday Baroque.
The Paducah translator is located on the KET tower at the Department of Emergency Services compound on Coleman Road. The translator broadcasts at 27 watts, its original power, designed to improve WKMS reception for area listeners in low spots due to the proximity of the Ohio River where lack of clear line of sight challenged reception from the main WKMS 100,000 watt transmitter in LBL.
In mid-2008 a new station outside Paducah sharing the translator's original frequency, 92.1 FM, began interfering with the Paducah translator. Then the ice storm of 2009 damaged the translator's antenna. In mid-2009 91.3 FM WKMS altered its mid-day programming to news and information, while continuing to offer 24 hour classical music service on its 91.3 WKMS HD-2 channel. 91.3 WKMS HD-1 offers the same programming schedule heard on 91.3 FM.
The ice storm of 2009 also damaged the 91.3 WKMS HD transmission system at its LBL site. This damage was fixed last autumn with funding resulting from an insurance claim. The HD signal strength was restored and offers strong HD reception in cars in most of the WKMS FM listening area. However, HD building penetration has been an issue for the technology since its inception.
Recently the FCC authorized stations to boost the power of its HD transmission systems to address the building penetration problem. The present WKMS HD transmitter is not power upgradable, but the station will pursue grants for upgrades as these become available.
For more information about 91.3 FM, Murray, 92.5 FM Paducah, 99.5 FM Paris, Tennessee, and 105.1 FM Madisonville as well as 91.3 WKMS HD-1 and HD-2 and www.wkms.org, call 800-599-4737 or see www.wkms.org.