November 2010 Meeting

SMPTE Philadelphia Section Meeting Notice

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Philadelphia, PA

William Weber – WHYY

Presentation: Common Alerting Protocol for the Emergency Alert System

Philadelphia SMPTE was invited to join Philadelphia SBE Chapter 18 for their monthly meeting. The topic was the upcoming AES / CAP standard. It was presented by Jim Heminway of Digital Alert Systems and. The meeting is being sponsored by Phil Joiner of RF Specialities of PA’s Philadelphia Office.The Common Alerting Protocol for the Emergency Alert System will soon be adopted by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. CAP is an interoperable data interchange format for collecting and distributing warnings to information networks, public safety alerting systems and personal communications devices. The CAP data structure is backward-compatible with existing alert formats including the Specific Area Message Encoding (SAME) used in Weatheradio and the broadcast Emergency Alert System.An EAS event includes a header, tones, voice message and EOM (End of Message). The local broadcast unit will automatically switch to the alert and back to programming with the EOM signal. The protocol will allow FEMA, the National Weather Service, a state governor or anyone authorized to initiate a public warning to format and “geo-target” a particular alert simultaneously over multiple media platforms like radio, TV, cable, cell phones and electronic highway signs. 

The FCC says EAS participants (such as radio stations) must accept CAP-based EAS alerts 180 days from the date FEMA publishes technical standards for CAP adoption.

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