KCEU's new power forces KUER to look for new spot on dial
Click and Clack will sound scratchy for another month or two, as will Doug Fabrizio, Carl Kasell, Peter Sagal and the rest of the KUER/NPR voices heard in Price.
The problem local listeners have noticed in their reception of the University of Utah station is being caused by another higher education station, KCEU at USU-CEU in Price. As reported earlier in the Sun Advocate, KCEU has become 20,000 times stronger, jumping all the way from 1/40 of a watt to 500 watts of broadcast power.
At 89.7 on the FM spectrum, it's right next door to KUER's translated frequency of 89.5. That's close enough to cause interference in the Price area.
As it turns out, KUER is the station that will have to relocate to another spot on the dial. KUER staff engineer Lewis Downey explained that KUER comes to Carbon County by way of a low-power translator at Ford Ridge. That makes it a secondary service according to Federal Communications Commission rules.
KCEU, on the other hand, is a primary server and has the right to stay put.
Downey explained that switching frequencies will take some time. First, the station has to hire a consultant to search for available frequencies. When that's done, it will be a matter of getting permission from the FCC to make the move. Then comes the technical process of physically changing the frequency at Ford Ridge.
"We'll probably use snow machines to get up there," Downey said, adding that this is something his station wants to get done quickly.