FROM PROMISE TO FULFILLMENT, Part 8.
“God causes all things to work together for good”
This is a continuation of the story of Engineer F. M. Perry’s involvement with the construction and start-up operation of The World Christian Broadcasting Corporation’s international short wave radio station KNLS at Anchor Point, Alaska.
In a letter dated January 27, 1982, the WCBC Attorney, Mr. Richard Zaragoza, sent a summary letter to Mr. Charles Breig of the FCC attaching as Exhibits seven pages of “Power Density Calculations” by WCBC Engineer F. M. Perry; an Engineering statement by Consulting Engineer, David Hudson; and a study of the “Magnetic Field Intensities Around the KGEI International Broadcast Station, Redwood City, California.” These documents simply confirmed and gave additional data supporting the WCBC Application for Construction Permit already submitted to the FCC. [Although the FCC continued to study the radiation problem with respect to public safety for two or three more months, the application for construction permit was finally granted with no changes but as originally submitted.]
First Attempt to Estimate Cash Flow Requirements During Construction.
Despite the turmoil and work to counter the reports of opposition from some of the Anchor Point community, much specific planning for construction was done in January 1982. Bob Scott requested F. M. to predict the cash flow needs for the entire construction period until going-on-the-air. In a three page letter (dated January 20, 1982) and eight pages of cash predictions F. M. made a stab at answering the request:
“Box 378, Fort Valley Route
Strasburg, Virginia 22657
20 January 1982.
“Subject: Cash Flow Predictions for construction Period -comments.
“Here is the first draft of my cash flow predictions. We must update them and make them more accurate as the project develops. I have shown figures for expenses at site (or for getting to site) and expenses for equipment. I have not shown all expenses at the Abilene office that might be incurred because of the expansion of the operation into Alaska.
“In February 1982 (on the attached chart) I refer to Kevin Chambers as "site coordinator" and show possible payments to him up to $800 per month for several months. I have not made any agreement with him except to accept his billing for specific work we ask him to do. He does not know what funds I am suggesting for his work. So far I have asked him to get bids and then to oversee the survey work. He has indicated that he will have no charge to WCBC for this work. He said he will hire-on with the surveyor as a "brusher." I plan to get him busy locating other possible contractors for the other site work (tree removal, road, water, septic, towers, etc.). He can also check on cost and availability of a mobile office trailer, rental quarters for personnel, etc. However, I doubt that the entire $800 will be required each month.
“Dick Perkins told me some time ago that the design and preparation of plans for the transmitter/studio building might cost $10,000. He said he would have to purchase engineering work on the design. Since it is desirable that the plans for the building be ready by May 1, I have shown this design cost in March and April.
“Assuming we have the FCC construction permit by May 1,1982, expenditures will become heavy in May. We will want Homer Electric to put in the power line as quickly as possible. We will want the road contractor to go ahead as fast as possible. We will want to make firm the order with Harris Corporation. Since 10% has already been paid to Harris, I assume that an additional 15% payment in May will make the order firm and start the full manufacturing cycle on all items including antennas and towers.
“In May the full-time construction management team should arrive on site. Tentatively, I see this as a 4 person team consisting of a site manager, and assistant site manager, the site coordinator (Kevin Chambers),and an office manager. I am assuming that I will be the site manager. The assistant site manager should be someone with whom I can share responsibilities and to whom full management responsibility could be given. I do not have anyone in mind. I assume we will be fully satisfied with Kevin Chambers and will want to hire him full time by June 1. He appears to be a very versatile and capable person who can be the third man on the managerial/supervisory team. (I assume that all three of us will perform various workman duties as we have time between supervisory duties.) For the office manager I have in mind a good secretary type person, probably a woman who can type, coordinate, and keep records.
“My wife and I plan to drive to site pulling my airstream trailer. The trailer will give us quarters until more suitable quarters are found. After that, the trailer could be used by volunteer workers or visitors during the summer. It will probably not be suitable for winter occupancy. I estimate that I will need $1,200 to help defray the expenses of the trip to Alaska. The trip may take two weeks from Virginia. When we arrive at Anchor Point I will need some remuneration to help defray living and other expenses, perhaps as much as $600 per month while I am in Alaska.
“I hope we can locate an assistant site manager who has his own income and desires to serve. If so, his expense and remuneration might be about the same as I am estimating for myself. Perhaps we can find an Alaska resident who might be supported by the church in Alaska.
“I have shown full-time pay for Kevin Chambers beginning in June.
“The office manager might be some Christian lady already living in the Anchor Point area.
“In June I show an item I have not" mentioned before: the purchase of a utility vehicle for use at the site. This probably should be a 4 wheel drive vehicle to assure that we can climb the hill most of the time. We might purchase it in the "lower 48" and let it serve as transportation for someone going to the site.
“June will be the month for getting the site jobs done to make the site ‘liveable,’ road, water system, septic system, electricity, etc. We should complete the tower foundations and the main building foundations during June.
“In July I hope the towers will arrive on site and be erected. The tower erection and work on the main building will be the major activities in July. We will probably be finishing up some of the tasks shown for June.
“In August the major work will be the main building. The antennas should be shipped during this month. TCI will have had 3 months to manufacture them.
“In September the antennas should arrive and be erected. They will not be used until 1983 but we should get them up during warm weather, if possible. Hopefully, we will be putting some finishing touches on the main building in September so that we can start installing equipment. Bill Ashley is estimating the cost of the primary power equipment that will go into the building. I don't have the figures yet.
“In October we can complete some of the interior details in the main building (studios, workshop, etc.). I show $20,000 for studio equipment because this is what we originally estimated. However, this figure may increase when we get the studio equipment list from Bill Ashley.
“In November we should install and test the studio equipment. Bill Ashley has volunteered to do this work himself free of charge except for expenses. We who are at site at that time will assist him. I have shown $3,000 for his possible expenses over a two or three week period.
“In December I have shown the shipment of the transmitter. If we make the Harris order firm on May 1,1982, this will give Harris 7 months to manufacture and test it. We will probably want to send someone to Quincy to take part in the final tests at the factory. I show $3,000 expense for this.
“In January 1983 we should start installation of the transmitter. We will be testing it into its ‘dummy load’ during late January and February. Also in January or February 1983 we may want to start bringing the station operating personnel to Alaska and have them start training exercises in daily operations. They may start ‘stockpiling’ program tapes. The studios should be in operation by then. Our programming people should put some cost figures on this.
“In March 1983 I have shown erection of the fence. We might get this done sooner, but we also might want to wait until the winter weather abates.
“There are a number of items for which I have no cost estimates. Also, I probably have left out a number of items. Perhaps you will be able to fill in some more items as you look over the list.
“We will shift some of these items around as the project develops and we will get more accurate estimates of some of the items as time goes on. We should get as many tasks done early as possible to make up for the tasks which, inevitably, will slip.
“I have not shown the clearing of timber on the list. I hope we can get it done free of charge by exchanging timber for work. It seems to me we ought to be able to exchange timber for the clearing work and for the processing of enough lumber to build our fence. I plan to ask Kevin Chambers to take this up with Bill Jones right away. Bill may not be able to do the whole job. If we can get an amicable agreement to exchange timber for work and some lumber, I favor putting Bill Jones to work on it this winter and spring. We should have the roadway clear of timber by May 1, anyway; also the parking lot, building site, and tower sites.
“This should get us started. I'll let you know of any changes as I learn about them.
F. M. Perry.
Following is a summary of F. M.’s month by month forecast of the funds that would be needed for disbursement from Anchor Point during the construction cycle:
January 1982 $ 2,305
February 1982 $ 3,105
March 1982 $ 5,800
April 1982 $ 5,800
May 1982 $ 214,800
June 1982 $ 333,310
July 1982 $ 58,810
August 1982 $ 240,210
September 1982 $ 80,810
October 1982 $ 79,810
November 1982 $ 6,810
December 1982 $ 312,410
January 1983 $ 25,810
February 1983 $ 8,810
March 1983 $ 10,070
April 1983 $ 8,810
May 1983 $ 10,810
June 1983 $ 8,810
Total $1,417,100 (Forecast of disbursements from Anchor Point during construction period. Does not include funds disbursed from Abilene office.)
When the above sum of $1,417,100 was combined with the funds forecast to be disbursed from the Abilene office, the total sum budgeted for completion of construction of KNLS was $1,933,474.
February 1982 -
On February 20, 1982 F. M. was privileged to attend an important meeting of the Board of Directors in Abilene, a meeting which marked the “kick off” of actual construction at Anchor Point. F. M. announced that Kevin Chambers had managed to get the survey of the property completed with roadways and building sites marked. He had also gotten bids from local contractors for things like timber removal, road building, and well drilling. F. M. presented a floor plan for the transmitter/studio building which was approved and turned over to the architect for completing the design. Dick Perkins, the architect, estimated that the 3,825 square foot building would cost about $60 per square foot or a total of $229,500 to build. It was decided that the order for major equipment (transmitter and antennas) should be negotiated as completely as possible but contingent upon the receipt of the FCC construction permit. Also arrangements with Homer Electric Assn. were to be made to start installation of electric power to the site as soon as the FCC permit was received. News from the FCC at this time was that there appeared to be no major problem with the WCBC application and approval of a permit was expected. The Board recognized and discussed the many aspects of the construction process including the making of local contracts in the name of the corporation, recruitment and remuneration of personnel, arrangement for transportation of personnel, purchase or lease of construction equipment, establishment of a construction office with banking, postal service, telephone, and other needed services. Finally a proposed construction budget was set up.
Much of the Board meeting involved the discussion and approval of the programming policy, especially for the first year or two of broadcasting. A special “Strategic Planning Committee” had been previously appointed from the Board members to plan programming policy. This special committee made the following report:
MEMO TO: WCBC Board
FROM: Strategic Planning Committee
DATE: Feb. 20, 1982
“On the weekend of January 8 and 9 the Strategic Planning Committee met in Chicago, Illinois for the purpose of further discussion and planning of the first year of programming for the Alaskan station. Present at that meeting were the following: Bob Scott, Charles Whittle, Ed Davis, Ed Bailey and John Fisk.
“The following areas of programming possibilities were discussed by the committee and are submitted to the board for discussion at this time. These discussions took place with our assumption that people in the target areas are not familiar with us and will not necessarily be spiritually minded at the time they begin to listen to our broadcasts.
“1. We restated and reaffirmed our previously adopted philosophy of broadcasting.
“2. We felt that the target audiences must perceive us as providing a needed and useful service to them.
“3. Our constituency (contributors and supporters) must perceive us as doing the Lord's will in a way that they will accept and support while, at the same time, we adhere to our stated philosophy of broadcasting. They must understand that we are endeavoring to build an audience among people who know little or nothing about us and are not, for the most part, spiritually oriented.
“4. It was felt that we needed to plan general programming for the entire first year which could be produced by the smallest staff possible. We did not determine where the production staff should be physically located on a temporary or permanent basis. It was generally agreed upon that the programming should be blocked into 3 hour segments which could be repeated three times each day and aimed at various audiences within our broadcast range. There would be an hourly updating of news during the day. We envision beginning production of programs in English, Cantonese, Mandarin, Russian and Japanese.
“The first year of programming might possibly consist mainly of:
“--Music, News and Sports.
“--Five-minute and one-minute religious programming designed to introduce and cultivate spiritual concepts.
“--Specialty programming such as Interviews, Agricultural programs, Cultural programs.
“5. It was felt that, for the first year, five-minute programming and one-minute programming should be offered for sale to our brotherhood for outside programming in various languages.
“These possibilities are offered for discussion realizing that programming of any radio station, aimed at a foreign or domestic audience, must always be ready for reevaluation in light of new evidence relative to the listening audience.
End of Report.”
In addition to the above report, the Strategic Planning Committee also presented a list of portable recording instruments (total $3,075.35) that would be used for the purpose of building a music library of recordings for the Alaska station. They were to be installed first in a studio at the church of Christ in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio but later moved to a location chosen as permanent.
Notice that the committee stated in the paragraph numbered 4 in the report above that “we did not determine where the production staff should be physically located on a temporary or permanent basis.” Although decisions had been made and were being carried out concerning the location and staffing of the transmitting station, no plans were yet made concerning the number or location of programming studios and the gathering of a programming staff. F. M. generally agreed with Board members who felt that the somewhat remote Alaska transmitter site would not be a good place from which a permanent programming staff might work. However, seeing that the planning of programming seemed to be lagging behind, and thinking that several months supply of programming material should be on hand when the broadcasting started, F. M. suggested that three or four recording studios might be built into the building to be constructed at Anchor Point. The first tentative floor plans made by Bill Ashley under F. M.’s direction provided three or four studios. At this February 1982 meeting the Board compromised by holding the number of programming studios at the Alaska site to one (that is, one studio plus a control room). F. M. presented a floor plan at the meeting which was approved for submission to the architect for completion of building plans. [With minor changes made by the architect, this is the floor plan finally constructed at Anchor Point. FMP]
Of great importance, the agenda for the Board meeting called for establishment of a set of long term objectives for WCBC. A list of objectives for accomplishment year by year beginning with the year 1982 and extending to the year 2000 were produced. These objectives represented the dreams of the Board of Directors to preach the gospel by means of a world network of short wave radio stations “to the largest possible number of people as can be done, integrating the broadcasts with all other efforts in evangelism, so as to participate in preaching the gospel to every person on earth.” At this meeting the Board also called for the setting up of a memorial endowment fund commemorating Lowell Perry, Ken Ferguson, and Hal Frazier, with the purpose “to provide needed funds for the on-going operational expenses of World Christian Broadcasting Corporation, and for the further development and use of its potential in world evangelism.”
“Approved by Board of Directors on February 20, 1982
“The objectives proposed below are for World Christian Broadcasting Corporation as we move toward the end of the century. They are set forth with the conviction that all we do is under the rule of our Sovereign God. In response to His Word and after prayer for wisdom it is believed that progress toward these objectives can contribute to the gospel being proclaimed to all the world in our generation. We are finite and prone to failure. He is limitless in power and owns all that exists. God is able to do far more than we can ever ask or think. Let us demonstrate that we are instruments in His hand, depending upon Him for strength and wisdom. In the context of this reality, each objective below is proposed for the year indicated.
“1. Complete capital funding for the construction of the station at Anchor Point, Alaska.
“2. Obtain a permit to build the Alaskan station from the Federal Communications Commission.
“3. Obtain a lease from the State of Alaska for the state land needed to be enclosed by a fence in front of one antenna at Anchor Point.
“4. Begin construction at Anchor Point at the earliest possible date in order to take advantage of the Alaskan weather for outdoor work on the site.
“5. Accelerate program planning and development with a view to going on-the-air by July 1983.
“6. Continue the search for possible additional sites upon which to build two other international short wave radio stations so as to bring as much of the world as possible within broadcast range of the gospel of Christ.
“7. Add a staff member as a full-time Director of Programming.
“8. Add a staff member for full-time involvement in capital fund raising and deferred giving.
“9. Set up a memorial endowment fund in honor of Lowell Perry, Ken Ferguson and Hal Frazier. The basic purpose of the fund would be to insure on-going funding for the operation of World Christian Broadcasting and for the fuller utilization of opportunities provided.
“10. Initiate a study to determine where the permanent corporate offices and production facilities of World Christian Broadcasting should be located.
“1. Complete construction of the Anchor Point station and have it operational by August 1983.
“2. At the time the Anchor Point station is operational. have on hand six months of effective programming for use in four languages: Japanese; Chinese Mandarin; Chinese Cantonese; and Russian.
“3. Select a site for permanent corporate offices and production facilities.
“4. Complete design of facilities for permanent corporate offices and production facilities.
“5. Initiate capital fund drive to pay for construction of permanent corporate offices and production facilities.
“6. Select the site for the next international short wave radio station for World Christian Broadcasting.
“7. Evaluate the construction process in the Anchor Point station and utilize the findings in planning the next station to be constructed.
“8. Initiate capital fund drive to pay for construction of the next international short wave radio station.
“1. Begin construction on permanent corporate offices and production facilities.
“2. Initiate research to. determine which languages should be added next in programming from Anchor Point.
“3. Apply to FCC for addition of transmitters and antenna at Anchor Point to fully develop its capacity for broadcasting.
“4. Design additional facilities for provision of needed housing at Anchor Point station.
“5. Secure permission from host country for building of second international short wave radio station.
“6. Begin construction of second station.
“1. Complete construction on permanent corporate offices and production faci1ities.
“2. Receive permission to fully deve1op Anchor Point broadcast capacity, initiate construction.
“1. Initiate broadcasting from second station.
“2. Secure site for a third station.
“3. Initiate capital funding for construction of the third station.
“1. Expand the second station to its full broadcast capacity.
“2. Secure permission from host country for building the third station, begin construction.
“1. Initiate broadcasting from third station.
“2. Increase the number of languages in which broadcasts are presented on stations one and two.
“1. Expand the third station to its full capacity for broadcasting.
“2. Design a strategy for broadcasting the gospel effectively to the largest number of people in the world in their own language.
“1. Increase the number of languages in which broadcasts are presented on the three stations so as to present the gospel to the greatest number of people possible.
“2. Coordinate broadcasts with as many other evangelistic outreach efforts as possible.
“1. Complete a decade of having preached the gospel to the largest possible number of people as can be done, having integrated these broadcasts with all other efforts in evangelism, so as to participate in preaching the gospel to every person on earth.”
The decisions made at the February Board of Directors meeting set the stage for F. M. to give the final design criteria to Bill Ashley for planning specific instruments to equip the Alaska studio and to Dick Perkins to make the final building plans. F. M. gave instructions to these men in the following letters:
“Mr. Richard Perkins
2549 Glenkerry Drive
Anchorage, Alaska 99504
“25 February 1982
“Here is the floor plan for the WCBC building at Anchor Point. It has been approved in principle and general layout by the Board of Directors and by Bob Scott, President. So, in the final plan we want to keep the outside dimensions approximately as shown and the same relationships among the rooms. However, the exact room dimensions and exact placement of partitions has not been finally determined. I am sending a copy of this floor plan to Bill Ashley. He will give us detailed specifications on each room.
“There will be ducts in the floor for wiring among the pieces of equipment and special openings in the walls of the “antenna switching" room for transmission line entry and exit. As you know, we desire to use the excess heat from the transmitters to heat the building. I believe I have already sent you drawings of the transmitter cabinets and heat exchangers. I assume you will use overhead space to distribute the heated air from the heat exchangers.
“Initially we will have only one transmitter but we anticipate eventual requirements for three transmitters. And, in the event we should require a fourth transmitter, I have shown a possible building expansion to accommodate it. Please design the building so that it will allow this expansion.
“I have shown a small utility room for the auxiliary heating plant. I do not know if we will need air cooling equipment or not. This room should also accommodate other utility items such as a hot water heater, pressure tank for the water well system, and the electrical controls for the water pump.
“We plan to drill the water well just outside the building near the. utility room and to equip it with a submersible pump. We will bring the pipe from the well into the building from below the frost line. In addition to supplying water to the building itself, we will take a water line out of the pressure tank to distribute water (below the frost line) to a mobile office and to mobile home pads nearby.
“As soon as possible this spring, when we have our construction permit, we plan to purchase a mobile office building for use at the site. It will be finally positioned somewhere near the building and will provide additional permanent office space. Also. we plan to equip two or three mobile home pads with water, electricity, and sewage facilities so that mobile homes may be moved on site for use of station employees.
“Keep in mind that we plan to contract in a piecemeal fashion for the various construction tasks and we may use volunteer labor for many of the tasks.
“Dick, I anticipate that we will need a full set of construction drawings for this building by May 15.1982. Will you be able to create them by then?
“I recall that you estimated (in 1980) that the cost of design and production of drawings might be $10,000. Bob Scott has budgeted that amount and it will be immediately available any time between now and May 15 to help defray design costs.
“Final details from Bill Ashley will be forwarded very soon. I hope this information will be sufficient to get the building design started.
“I will be working here in the Abilene office for the next two months. You can reach me here by telephone.
“Best personal regards and may God bless you in your work.
F. M. Perry
Director of Engineering
cc: Robert C. Scott.”
“Mr. Bill Ashley
5645 Mount Burnside Way
Burke, Virginia 22015
“26 February 1982
“The Board of Director's meeting on February 20 was very productive. There was not much time to discuss the layout of the transmitter/studio building but we have some guidelines as follows:
“1. Hold the size of the building to about 3825 sq. ft. (based on a rectangular layout about 45' x 85'.)
“2. Provide two small studios (studio and control room) with as much versatility for their use as possible.
“3. We will purchase a mobile office trailer to use as a construction office. This trailer will be located finally adjacent to the building to provide permanent office space.
“With these things in mind, and with your earlier layouts as guides, I came up with the attached layout. I can see some slight drawbacks to this layout. Perhaps you will see some major problems with it. If so, please call them to my attention.
“I have sent a copy of this layout to Dick Perkins to give him something with which to get started. He is a very busy architect and will probably have difficulty scheduling this building design into his already scheduled work. I have asked him to complete the drawings by May 15, 1982. We desire to start contracting by then.
“Problems that I see with this layout are:
“1. Workshop is adjacent to a studio. Will we be able to sound-proof the news studio from noisy activities in the workshop?
“2. The news studio and news workroom are very small. Can you figure a way to make them larger? We could move the lounge to the mobile trailer; we could make the large 22' x 12' studio smaller and somehow give that space to the news operation; we could give over one office to the news operation; or we could make the workshop smaller and give that space to the news operation.
“3. The utility room, to accommodate the heating unit, water pressure tank, hot water heater, etc., may not be large enough. We’ll let the architect deal with this. It occurs to me that he may want to use electric baseboard heat with separate controls in each room.
“It seemed to me that it would be advantageous to place the large studio (22' by 12'), the production control room, and the live newscast room so that they could have windows looking out on the Master Control. Then, any of the three areas could be used for live broadcasts as well as for production of tapes. Is this arrangement worthwhile?
“Bill. the production of general program tapes will be minimal. Most program material will be taped in the ‘lower 48' and the tapes will be physically transported to Anchor Point. We may have to start operations with live newscasts originating at Anchor point. However. I expect the news operation to eventually be conducted in the ‘lower 48' with live connections to Anchor point (probably via satellite). We may pick up some programs from a satellite link and record them for delayed broadcast. In the case or news, the delay may be only a matters or minutes or hours.
“With these points in mind. please give us a list of recommended equipment for this layout as soon as possible. We may be able to get someone to purchase the entire list at once and we would like to be able to hand over our list or desired equipment within the next few days!
“Incidentally, John Fisk is already starting to make and store some genera1 program tapes. He is purchasing the following equipment to use primarily to start taping a music library:
“2 each TEAC Model 32-2B @ $1,039.50 each.
1 each TEAC Model 21 Audio Mixer @ $399.00.
1 each TECHNICS SL-B202 Turntable @ $99.95.
2 each SONY SSU-50 speakers @ $54.95 each.
1 each Bulk Tape eraser.
1 each SUPERSCOPE Model C-20LP Cassette Recorder @ $277.50.
“These items will be used in the ‘lower 48' and will probably never be sent to Alaska. They will be used primarily for taping music. Have you any helpful comments concerning this equipment?
“Hope to hear from you soon with all or the rest of the information which we need to give to the architect.
“I'll be here in the Abilene office for about 2 more months.
“F. M. Perry
Director of Engineering
“cc: Robert E. Scott
March 1982 -
The following letter from F. M. to Kevin Chambers illustrates the fact that Kevin was the first WCBC employee to actually reside in Anchor Point.
“Mr. Kevin Chambers
Anchor Point, Alaska 99556
1 March 1982
“It appears that our FCC construction permit will be granted soon. Some minor point remain to be clarified. It is possible that it will be granted before May 1.
“Concerning letters of opposition that have been received by the FCC, we understand that they have been considered seriously and are being answered by the FCC. We have complied from the beginning with all government regulations as well as with some proposed new regulations regarding radio frequency radiation. We expect official acknowledgment of this from the FCC with the granting of our construction permit soon.
“Attached are two letter copies to inform you of our progress on building design. Note that one of our first actions, after we get our FCC construction permit, will be to purchase a mobile office trailer. I am assuming that one will be available on the Kenai Peninsula or in Anchorage. Please make inquiry, as you have opportunity, about cost and availability of such a trailer. It need not be new. We have budgeted $20,000 for it without any real knowledge of what it might actually cost. Hopefully it will have built-in rest rooms, heating system, electrical wiring, etc. Possibly we could alter the interior of a used trailer to suit us. We might even change a used mobile home into an office facility.
“In addition, some of us may desire to purchase, or lease, mobile homes in which to live on site. So please make inquiry concerning cost and availability of mobile homes, especially used ones.
“We are beginning to get inquiries from people who might volunteer to come to Alaska to help us this summer. We are developing a policy to indicate the conditions under which we would invite volunteers to the site. We need more information concerning the availability of housing in the Anchor Point/Homer area. Hopefully we will not have to dilute our construction effort to provide special housing for them on site. Would you please check into the availability of housing for volunteers (motels, room rentals, apartment rentals, RV facilities,
RV rentals, etc.).
“I'd be pleased for you to share this letter with the interested Christians in the Anchor Point church. Charlotte and I are looking forward to living and working among you in the near future.
“Give our love to the brethren.
F. M. Perry
Director of Engineering
“cc: Robert E. Scott.”
The following letter illustrates a type of question often received from the public which WCBC always tried to answer:
“3 March 1982
Mr. I. R. Church
Route 1, Box 20
Bates City, Mo. 64011
“Dear Brother Church
“Your question concerning the power output of the planned Alaska international broadcast station was forwarded to us by Brother Pat McMahan of Anchorage. Thank you for your interest and for affording us an opportunity to explain some of the requirements of a radio station which will be capable of broadcasting the gospel of Christ. to a large portion of the earth's population.
“We understand your question to be as follows: Why does the WCBC station in Alaska need a transmitter with a power output of 100 kilowatts when other radio stations achieve communication over great distances with transmitters of much lower power?
“There are a number of complex factors which contribute to our need for 100
kilowatts of transmitter power. Before discussing them let us acknowledge that there are many lower power short wave communication services operating over long distances, such as the commercial radio telephony and telegraphy services. These services successfully operate with lower power transmitters only because they are able to utilize much more efficient narrow band modes of transmission and reception than we are able to use in international broadcasting. Commercial radio telephony and telegraphy services utilize transmitter power levels from 1 kilowatt to more than 10 kilowatts depending upon types of antennas used, distances to be covered, etc. Occasionally, for short periods of time, radio amateurs are able to communicate with other amateurs over thousands of miles with transmitter power of 100 watts or less. However, this cannot be done continuously day after day. The ionospheric conditions which allow such low power communication are sporadic and almost impossible to forecast.
“WCBC, as an international broadcaster, must transmit with enough power to present a pleasing level of volume of broadband program material (including music) to relatively low quality home receivers on regular daily program schedules. When the varying hourly, seasonally, and yearly propagation conditions are analyzed, and a number of other complex factors such as bandwidth and noise levels are taken into consideration, it is found that consistently good reception can only be achieved with effective transmitter powers of 10,000 to 20,000 kilowatts!
“A transmitter with 10,000 to 20,000 kilowatts of power output is not commercially available and would be much too costly to build. However, by using an antenna which can concentrate the transmitter output into a concentrated beam, it is possible to effectively multiply the power output of a commercially available transmitter to the necessary high power level. The powerful beam will then be directed into selected areas of the world during the prime listening hours for that area.
“The WCBC Alaska station will utilize a commercially available transmitter with a relatively modest power output of 100 kilowatts. This transmitter output will be fed into a directive antenna which will provide a power gain of 20 db. The effective power concentrated in the center of our beam will be approximately 15,900 kilowatts! This will be sufficient power to allow reception on a continuous daily basis at a pleasant level of volume in normal home receivers at distances up to 5,000 or 6,000 miles.
“By comparison, the Voice of America utilizes transmitters with power outputs up to 500 kilowatts. With directive antennas the Voice of America multiplies the transmitter outputs to concentrated beam powers up to 40,000 kilowatts.
“The Federal Communications Commission, recognizing the power levels which must be generated in order to successfully broadcast internationally, requires that a station, in order to obtain a license, use a transmitter of at least 50 kilowatts power output and a directive antenna with at least 10 db of power gain. This establishes the minimum effective beam power of an FCC licensed international broadcast station at 500 kilowatts.
“This has been a simplified discussion of a complicated subject. If you would like to delve deeper into this subject, or if you have other questions, please let us know and we will answer to the best of our ability.
“F. M. Perry
Director of Engineering.”
Kevin and his wife, Nancy, were at this time living in a cabin near the home of Don Ledger and Kevin was able to get telephone messages through Don’s telephone. However Kevin was working part time away from the cabin on a job in Dillingham, Alaska. So F. M. wrote to Kevin through a letter to Don as follows:
“Mr. Don Ledger
Box 25, North Fork Road
Anchor Point, Alaska 99556
4 March 1982
“In our telephone conversation with Kevin Chambers today, Kevin reminded us that he was awaiting our authorization to conduct soil tests at the antenna sites and at the septic tank drainage field site on WCBC property. The results of these soil tests are needed to complete our specifications and get quotations for tower foundations and septic tank installation. Would you please inform Kevin, as soon as he returns from his temporary job at Dillingham, that we want him to go ahead with the soil tests as soon as possible. We would like Kevin, himself, to supervise the work.
“Kevin indicated that Mr. Paul Roderick has offered to do the digging for the soil tests as well as to probe for gravel in a number of places on WCBC property. We understand that Mr. Roderick offered to do this work with his backhoe tractor for a maximum of $2,000 (for two days work). Kevin should go ahead and contract with Mr. Roderick for this work (both the soil tests and probes for gravel).
“Kevin also indicated that a soils engineer from Soldatna has offered to analyze and give us the soils analysis report for $1,200. Kevin should go ahead and contract with this engineer for this work. The engineer must be on the site at the time the soil samples are taken, so there is some coordination to be done to get everyone on site at the same time.
“Bob Scott is ready to send checks to cover these services (including Kevin's time and expense) upon receipt of billing. If a pre-payment is required, please let us know by telephone.
“We are looking forward to seeing you as soon as the FCC construction
permit is received --soon we hope.
“F. M. Perry
Director of Engineering.”
At this time, March 1982, WCBC’s application to the FCC described only the first phase of WCBC’s plan for broadcasting from the Anchor Point site. The plot plan under consideration by the FCC called for only one curtain dipole antenna (Model 611) and one log periodic antenna (Model 516). It was our contention that the hazardous radiation from these two antennas was well contained on WCBC property and that no additional land would be needed to contain the hazardous radiation. However, in the second phase of the plan, when there would be additional broadcasting over the north pole to Europe, WCBC would install up to three more curtain dipole antennas (Model 611), and we were not at all certain that the hazardous radiation from all antennas operating simultaneously could be contained within WCBC property. Therefore, WCBC was still negotiating with the State of Alaska to lease additional land along the northern border of WCBC property in order to eventually place a protective fence around the additional area in which there might be hazardous radiation. The following letter indicates F. M. was still negotiating with the State of Alaska for the use of the additional land:
“Mr. Joe DeSmidt. Jr.
ADNR/Div. of Land & Water
Soldotna, Alakaa 99669
8 March 1982
“Dear Mr. DeSmidt:
“Our attorney, Mr. C. R. Baldwin, has informed us that you are processing our lease application for the Alaska Division of Lands and that you require a plat which precisely locates where our antennas will be located in relation to the boundary lines of our property.
“We have prepared the attached drawing which locates the two towers of each antenna with respect to the boundary lines. In addition, we are enclosing a drawing which defines the State land to the north of our property which we desire to lease.
“Thank you tor your assistance.
“Francis M. Perry
Director of Engineering
“cc: Mr. C. R. Baldwin.”
In regard to the second phase plans and the eventual requirement for additional land, F. M. wrote letters in March to Engineering Advisor Dave Hudson and TCI antenna consultant, Owen Thompson, asking them to help us ascertain how much additional land would be needed.
Also F. M. wrote to Jim Dillinger, the preacher for the Anchor Point Church of Christ for help in locating board and housing for volunteer workers who might soon be arriving in Anchor Point. In answer, Jim sent the following letter:
“March 22, 1982.
“Dear F.M. ,
“I received your letters last week. I am trying to get together all the information you wanted. Several people were wanting more information about the situation before they volunteered.
“On the full time positions none will take the job without knowing exactly what the pay scale will be. We have several men that would be excellent for the position but they make their living by working in the summer. What they make during the summer months must get them through the whole year. There is very little year round work in Alaska. Most of the men work away from home in the summer and make excellent wages ($15-25 per hour), plus much overtime. They can not give that up without full time pay from WCBC. We have two men now who would
be able to handle the work in an excellent manner, Kevin Chambers and Larry Weede. If you want them, you will need to let them know right away. Almost all of our men will be going off to work within the next 30 days. If you want someone from here you will need to make a decision by then.
“We have several men who would like to help as much as they can on a volunteer basis, but during July, August, and September their time is very limited. They could help a few hours after work at night and Saturdays but that is about all. That would be true of all the surrounding congregations. Even then, it could not be specialized help. Nearly every man in the congregation can build a house, but few are professionals. Do you want non professional volunteers?
“I am working on housing. I will try to get the information to you as soon as people let me know what they have available. The sooner you can come up here the better. Then you can see the situation first hand. I have contacted all the congregations on the Peninsula, but not Anchorage. Possibly Pat McMahan can do that. You may also consider having people come up from the lower 48 on their vacations and help.
“We are really excited about this thing getting started. Whatever we can do to help we will do. See you soon.
Mr. Zaragoza’s letter of March 26 gave an update on the progress of the WCBC application as it traveled through the halls of the FCC:
“Mr Robert E. Scott, EdD, President
World Christian Broadcasting Corp.
P. O. Box 3857
301 South Pioneer Drive
Abilene, TX 79604 I
March 26, 1982
“I called Charlie Breig and obtained an update on our application.
“(1) The financial amendment we filed has now satisfied the Commission and we are clear on that important basic qualifications question.
“(2) EPA used the wrong specifications for our log periodic antenna and has had to go back to the computer. This apparently will delay a decision by two weeks or so. Evidently our curtain antenna is okay so that is good news.
“(3) Breig asked that we clarify the location of the fence and state basically whether we have assurance of the use of the extra land we need. I told him that I would prefer to await EPA's response first since they may conclude we will need less land than we earlier thought which may moot our need for additional land. I am inclined to await EPA's read out first.
“(4) He did ask for a commitment that we would post appropriate signs warning workers of any radiation hazards. F.M. should check with Dave Hudson to see what KGEI does and we can make the same commitment. That commitment was extracted by the Commission many years ago and it is really not burdensome.
“(5) Perhaps you can give me an update on the status of the land proceedings in Alaska. At the current time, I am not inclined to provide any further clarification on our fence until EPA decides what the minimum distance between the transmitter and the fence should be.
“Please send me another ‘Certificate of Amendment’ like the one we filed before to introduce our commitment regarding the posting of signs.
“Very truly yours,
“Richard R. Zaragoza
“cc: F.M. Perry.”
The following letter to Jim Dillinger gives the status for the WCBC search for employees, both part time volunteers and full time staff:
“Mr. Jim Dillinger
Anchor Point, Alaska 99556
30 March 1982
“Thank you for your letter of March 22.
“We are beginning to get some good prospects for the full time jobs. Mr. Weede wrote to me and I answered enclosing an application blank on March 22. Pat McMahon has suggested three candidates for the same job and we are awaiting their applications also. There are also some possible applicants from the ‘lower 48'. The job I am speaking of is that of manager (or Foreman) of construction of the transmitter/studio building. We wanted any interested applicants from the Anchor Point area to have a chance at this job. As soon as we get the applications we will evaluate them and let everyone know. The candidate that we use will depend on which is best qualified, when and how long he is available, how much remuneration he needs, what living expenses are needed, etc.
“We are advertising far and wide for volunteer workers. We have written to friends to spread the word in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Kenai/Soldatna, and Anchor Point, as well as a number of places in the ‘lower 48.’ We are getting expressions of interest from Louisiana, Oregon, Kodiak, and Anchorage, to name a few.
“This does not mean that we will have an overwhelming flood of volunteers. Many who express interest may not be able to match their available time with our needs. It is especially difficult right now to make arrangements with volunteers when we don't know for certain what our work schedule will be.
“As far as non-specialized help from our Anchor Point friends is concerned, we will probably need all we can get. We very much appreciate the willingness of those who have only limited time to help. When the work gets going we'll try to set up some kind of a coordination plan to use everyone when they are available.
“We have an understanding with Kevin Chambers. We will be putting him to work more and more during the next few weeks and we hope to have him as a part of our full time team when the work starts in earnest. That will be soon, I hope.
“I have received replies concerning room rates and availability from most of the hotel/motels of Homer and even Ninilchik. But I have received no answer from the Anchor Point Inn. Are they booked up?
“Thanks for your help, Jim.
“Francis M. Perry.”
April 1982 -
During the month of April, the National Association of Broadcasters was holding its annual convention in Dallas, Texas. F. M. was living and working in Abilene, Texas at the time so he drove over to Dallas to attend.
In a letter dated 1 April 1982 F. M. made an effort to prepare the Homer Electric Assn. for the start of a WCBC contract with them, a start which could not as yet be scheduled specifically:
“Mr. S. C. Matthews
Manager, Engineering Services
Homer Electric Association, Inc.
P. O. 3ox 429
Homer, Alaska 99603
1 April 1982
“Dear Mr. Matthews:
“Thank you for your letter of March 26 to our President, Mr. Robert E. Scott. We are eager to start construction on our property at Anchor Point and are ready to do so except for one thing. We still do not have in hand the necessary construction permit. It is expected shortly, but until it arrives we cannot submit to you our Application for Service. Thank you for your patience in this seemingly long drawn-out period of preparation.
“When our construction permit is fully cleared, it will be of utmost importance that we complete construction and go on-the-air as quickly as possible. Therefore, we would like to clear up some details now so that our Application for Service will be fully definitive when it is submitted. We would appreciate your advice on the following matters:
“1. In our original construction at Anchor Point we will install a single transmitter which will have a normal peak consumption of 250 KW at 0.95 power factor. The rest of our station equipment should have a normal peak consumption of no more than 50 KW, making our total peak consumption about 300 KW. Later, perhaps within two years, we will add two additional transmitters which will bring our total peak consumption to about 840 KW. Should we apply now for the 840 KW service, or for the 300 KW service? What are the financial and other tradeoffs in this decision?
“2. One of our first steps, when construction activity starts on our property at Anchor Point, will be to set up a mobile office building. In addition, two or three mobile home pads will be prepared and mobile homes may be placed on them early in the summer. We will need single phase power to these buildings, as well as temporary power for construction purposes, from the start of construction, long before we need the three phase power. Will it be possible to extend this single phase power very quickly from an existing line in the area? The mobile home pads will become permanent installations and probably should have separate meters.
“3. Would you please give us some indication of what we can expect in the way of power outages, from whatever causes.
“4. Although this has nothing to do with our application for power service, perhaps you can help us with some information concerning icing and wind conditions that can be expected in the Anchor Point area. What icing and wind loads do you use in designing transmission lines and towers? We have specified that our antennas and towers be designed to withstand EIA Zone B wind conditions (40 pounds per square foot wind pressure) with 1/2 inch radius of solid ice. These design criteria of wind and ice conditions at the same time may increase our antenna costs considerably. We are wondering what your records show concerning actual conditions that have existed in the area.
“Thank you for your assistance.
“Francis M. Perry
Director of Engineering
“cc: Mr. Bob Ditton.
Dr. Robert E. Scott
Mr. C. R. Baldwin.”
The final instructions were given to the Architect for the transmitter/studio building in the following letter:
“Mr. Richard Perkins, Architect
7311 Augustine Drive
Anchorage, Alaska 99504
7 April 1982
“We have gone over the floor plan you sent and have made a final revision. The enclosed sketch shows the changes. Please go ahead now with the final plans for the building. I will describe the changes below so that there will be no misunderstanding:
“1. There are no changes in offices, reception area, utility room, rest rooms, lounge/general purpose room, or the transmitter bay area.
“2. The antenna switching room has been enlarged to approx. 9' x 28' and the power distribution room has been made smaller to approx. 9' x 14'. This simply means moving the partition between the two rooms.
“3. The studio/news room/workshop area has been rearranged and simplified, I believe. There will be no double doors to studios. Instead, we will put in high quality sound proof doors. The doors to the production control room, the studio, and the news studio should not only be as sound proof as possible, but should also have viewing windows in them. That window should be fairly large in the doors to the production control room and the news studio so that a seated operator in the rooms can see through the windows. The door, to the studio need not have such a large window since it will only be used to let standing people know if the studio is occupied. The only interior window in a partition will be between the production control room and the studio.
“4. Three of the rooms (the production control room, the studio, and the news studio) will need good sound proofed walls and ceiling.
“5. The ceiling on the transmitter bay end of the building must be at least 10 feet high. The transmitter is 6 1/2 feet high and the heat exchanger which goes on top of the transmitter is 3 ½ feet high. This makes a total of 10 feet. It will be desirable to have 10 foot ceilings in the power distribution and antenna switching rooms also. The rest of the building can have 8 foot ceilings if you desire. I envision (but don't insist) an entire building shell with 10 foot ceiling. The ceiling over the studios and offices could be dropped to 8'. This would give plenty of room for large, quiet heat ducts from the transmitter heat exchanger, and would give some
room to put sound proofing in the ceiling of studio rooms.
“6. The antenna switching room needs an exhaust air duct to the outside with blower. There will be a large air cooled ‘dummy load’ in this room which will get quite hot when in use. The ‘dummy load’, a large resistor, will not be used very often, but when it is used there will be 100 KW of power being dissipated in it as heat. There is a cooling fan in the ‘dummy load’ cabinet which exhausts the hot air out the top of the cabinet. I believe it will be adequate to simply exhaust the entire room through a duct in the wall when the ‘dummy load’ is in use.
“7. After placement of the first transmitter, we will probably want to frame a partition around it so that only the front panel of the transmitter shows into the master control area. The partition will be for the purpose of keeping people away from high voltage areas and it will also muffle some of the internal transmitter noise from going into other areas of the building.
“8. I envision the building with roof trusses spanning the entire 44' width of the building. This arrangement would give us the future possibility of moving interior partitions around. Someday, we might want to remodel the studio/office section of the building.
“9. There is one other possible change which I have not shown on the sketch. I would like to leave this possible change up to you to decide. I have shown the main entrance to the reception area oriented to the East. The double doors to the transmitter bay area is shown oriented to the South. Bob Scott has suggested that the entire building might be revolved 90 degrees so that the main entrance to the reception area is to the South. The reason for this suggestion is that the most of the parking area will be to the South of the building and visitors could pull their cars up close to the main entrance. On the other hand, I envision parking a mobile office building to the East of the building and we might want to build a covered walkway between the mobile office building and the main entrance to this building. That is an argument for keeping the orientation as it is now. (See other enclosed sketch.) If you should revolve the building so that the main entrance is to the South, I think the double door to the transmitter bay area should be moved to the other side of the building so that it open on the East. It might be desirable then to reverse the entire studio/office/lounge area of the building. In any case, do not reverse the position of the antenna switching room with respect to the power distribution room. The present relative position of these rooms will be o. k. in either orientation.
“I hope I have not confused everything. We need the building plans as soon as we can get them.
“Francis M. Perry.”
The controversy regarding the safety of the public and staff personnel in the environs of the WCBC short wave transmitter/antenna had by this time been resolved in the mind of the engineers (F. M. Perry, David Hudson, and perhaps others) but questions had been posed to so many government agencies that it was still being discussed in the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Early in April F. M. received a copy of an internal EPA letter from Mr. Richard A. Tell of the Nonionizing Radiation Surveillance Branch to Mr. Edward J. Cowan, a Radiation Representative in the EPA Seattle, Washington Office. Mr. Richard A. Tell, a well known and highly respected scientist, had been called upon to investigate the controversy that raged at Anchor Point. He had received copies of the letters and the series of plot plans F. M. had sent to Kenai Borough officials as F. M. studied the RF radiation problem from the beginning. Mr. Tell had also received copies of the letters and petitions that had originated from Anchor Point people opposed to the WCBC project. Apparently Mr. Tell and his staff made a very detailed study of the whole controversy. The study is reported in the letter reproduced below.
The report from Mr. Tell was very helpful to WCBC because it analyzed not only the first phase of planned WCBC construction at Anchor Point, but also the second phase in which additional transmitters and antennas were planned. From Mr. Tell’s study report F. M. was able to conclude that additional land from the State of Alaska would not ever be required, even in the second phase of added transmitters and antennas. F. M.’s comments and conclusions are given below in a copy of his letter to Mr. Zaragoza. Also reproduced below is a letter from Consulting Engineer David Hudson drawing the same conclusions, that no addition land would be required adjacent to the WCBC property site even for the second phase when additional transmitters and antennas would be employed.
[The following three letter reports could be of use even in 2006 as WCBC engineers plan and construct additional short wave radio stations.]
“United States Environmental Protection Agency
Office of Radiation Programs- Las Vegas Facility
P.O. BOX 18416, LAS VEGAS. NEVADA 89114 - 702/798-2100 (FT545-2100)
“APR 0 2 1982
“Mr. Edward J. Cowan, Radiation Representative
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
1200 Sixth Avenue, Mail Stop 533
Seattle, WA 98101
“Dear Mr. Cowan:
“I am writing in response to your letter of January 1, 1982, requesting assistance in evaluating the proposed shortwave broadcast installation to be built by the World Christian Broadcast Corporation near Anchor Point, Alaska which has generated considerable concern among residents of the area. Subsequent to your request for answers to a number of questions regarding the proposed facility, I have received similar requests from Ms. Linda Feiler, a resident of Anchor Point, Alaska, the Federal Communications Commission who have asked us to provide an analysis of the situation and the Office of the Attorney General, State of Alaska, via their letter to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration.
“In reviewing the large amount of material in each of these packages it became clear to me why there has been so much concern expressed by the citizens in the area; the information provided by the various parties; concerned, pincipal1y the applicant for the proposed station, has contained inconsistencies and therefore has been a source of confusion to the public. Frankly I was confused over deciding exactly what the proposed installation is to include. I have cleared this up by contacting Hammett and Edison, the engineering firm representing the applicant. My perception is that, over a period of time, the World Christian Broadcasting Company (WCBC) evolved a series of statements about the possibility of radio frequency radiation hazards, as they sensed an increasing concern about the system by citizens in the area. These statements appear to have incorporated somewhat differing approaches to estimating the exposure fields near the system, resulting in what appears to be some inconsistency in what were considered to be safe distances from the shortwave system. Additionally, there appears to have been virtually no communication from WCBC to Hammett and Edison informing them of statements provided by their Director of Engineering directly to the local area residents, leading also to more confusion about the proposed installation. I may be wrong but this is what I believe has happened.
“Rather than dealing with so-called worst case scenerios, which are quite unrealistic, we elected to perform a detailed analysis of the projected exposure levels near the system. This involved an in-depth analysis of the TCI model 611 curtain antenna system to enable computation of the expected exposure levels at near-field locations. This computation provides an exact determination of the fields. A similar but simpler, albeit conservative, calculational methodology was employed for the more compllcated TCI model 516 log periodic antenna.
“Our overall conclusions about the proposed facility are as follows:
“(1) The system with antenna locations as proposed in the WCBC application for construction permit, dated August 28, 1981, to the Federal Communications Commission will not create electromagnetic field intensities that exceed the new ANSI proposed exposure standard for human exposure at any location beyond the property for any height within ten feet of the ground. More specifically, our analysis shows that excluding regions in the immediate vicinity of large metallic fences, the electromagnetic fields will not exceed 15 percent of the proposed ANSI standard for power densit electric field strength or magnetic field strength. The presence of metallic fences will cause local enhancement of the electric field strength; however, our analysis shows that such locally enhanced fields will not exceed the proposed ANSI standard. This finding leads me to the belief that typical exposures to the WCBC facility beyond the property boundary will not result in adverse health effects.
“(2) It is unlikely that subsequent changes in the facility, at some later date, as apparently suggested by Mr. Perry of WCBC, will increase the exposure levels outside the WCBC property but a new analysis should be conducted at such time as WCBC can identify exactly what those facilities will consist of.
“(3) The FAA Airway Facilities Division in Washington should be inform by the applicant of its intention to insure an adequate evaluation of potential interference to aircraft radio communication.
“(4) There will exist a possibility of inadvertent detonation of electroexplosive devices used close to the site (within probably 0.7 miles); this may or may not be of concern depending upon the potential for blasting activity in the area.
“(5) Interference to radio and television reception is a possibility, particularly within one mile of the proposed system.
“(6) Although we have not performed a detailed analysis of the expected intensity of electromagnetic fields inside of the property boundaries of the WCBC installation, it is likely that exposure levels in some areas will exceed the current OSHA standard for occupational radio frequency exposure. A site survey should be accomplished after completion of the installation to define areas for appropriate posting indicating the presence of potentially hazardous exposures.
“I am attaching answers to Steve Honig's letter of January 1, 1982, in numerical sequence. I am providing copies of this letter and attachments to those individuals indicated on the attached sheet.
“If I can be of further help, please let me know.
“Richard A. Tell, Acting Chief
Nonionizing Radiation Surveillance Branch
Office of Radiation Programs-LVF
“Attachments (as stated).”
Ms. Linda Fei1er
P.O. Box 148
Anchor Point, AK 99556
Dr. Michael J. Marcus, Acting Chief
Research and Analysis Division
Office of Science and Technology
Federal Communications Commission
2025 M. Street, N. W.
Washington, D.C. 10554
Mr. David E. Hudson
Hammett and Edison, Inc.
P.O. Box 68, International Airport
San Francisco, CA 94128
Mr. Jeff Labahn, Senior Planner
Kenai Peninsula Borough
P.O. Box 850
Soldotna, AK 99669
Mr. W. James Sweeney, Director
Alaska Operations Office
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Room E535, Federal Building
701 C Street, Box 19
Anchorage, AK 99513
World Christian Broadcasting Corporation
P.O. Box 3857
Abi1ene, TX 79604
Mr. Wilson L. Condon, Attorney General
Office of the Attorney General
State of Alaska
420 L Street, Suite 100
Anchorage, AK 99501
Ms. Janet Healer
National Telecommunications & Information Agency
1325 G. Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20005
Dr. Ronald Wilensky
Technology for Communications International
1625 Stierlin Road
Mountain View, CA 94043
Mr. Melvin Yoskihamu, Chief
Airways Facilities Systems Division
FM (AAF-700) .
800 Independence Avenue, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20591
Response to Questions Submitted by Steve Honig
“1. Because of the high directivity of each transmitting antenna system, beams from adjacent antennas will not overlap and thus will not add significantly to the exposure values found directly in front of either antenna.
“2. An analysis of the antenna system shows that the resultant field at any point will not exceed the value resulting from a 'flat earth' assumption.
“3. The maximum value of field that would occur due to the presence of a metallic fence is difficult to assess. The fence could both decrease the fields in some locations and increase it in others. As an example, we analyzed the case of the TCI model 611 antenna and found that it might be possible to find maximum fields of 0.6 mW/cm2 assuming that a six foot tall person was positioned within 37 feet of the fence. Field enhancement can be prevented by using non-metallic fence materials.
“4. The presence of tall trees will not significantly increase the exposure levels near the facility. This is because the trees will have little interaction with the horizontally polarized signal transmitted by the system.
“5. Metallic structures can act as reflectors of the emitted waves but the resulting exposure levels in the area of concern would not be more than approximately four times the power density computed assuming that no reflective surfaces are present. The size of the reflective surfaces would have to be comparable to the wavelength of the transmitted signal to be effective in causing such modification of the fields.
“6. Rain, snow, heavy fog or clouds will have no measurable effect on the exposure levels because of reflection. Rain would tend to make the ground somewhat more conductive and therefore make the antenna system slightly more efficient thereby slightly increasing the strength within the immediate area of the system. However, our calculations are based on an assumption that the ground is perfectly conducting and therefore the actual exposure levels will not exceed the computed estimates.
“7. The quoted value of measured field strength of 16 V/m at 1 mile from this type of system would occur at a height above ground of 685 feet when operated at 9 MHz and be less at heights other than this value. Multiple transmitters will not increase this value at any given point. Because high intensity radio signals may cause interference with aircraft communication systems, the FAA must conduct an analysis of such potential interference within established air lanes. The applicant should address its intention to construct the proposed station to the FAA by contacting
“Mr. Melvin Yoshikamu, Chief
Airways Facilities Systems Division
800 Independence Avenue, S.W.
Washington, DC 20591
“8. The actual exposure is zero at ground level and becomes larger as the height above ground increases. The differences in field intensities provided by Mr. Hudson and Mr. Perry are due to different calculational methodologies. We have performed a very accurate computer analysis of the fields to clear up the confusion. At a distance of 750 feet away from a TCI model 611 antenna with a 100 kW transmitter operating at 9 MHzs the fields will vary with height above ground as follows:
“Height above ground Exposure (mW/cm2)
“There will be no substantive increase when more than one transmitter is operated.
“9. The current ANSI standards originally issued in 1966, specifies a maximum permissible exposure level to radio waves of 10 mW/cm2 regardless of the frequency of the signal. The standard was based on the concept that the energy absorbed by the human body from an incident radio wave is converted to heat which, if provided in sufficient quantity could lead to an increase in temperature of the body tissues. The standard was set at a level that was thought to preclude harmful heating within the body. More recent research has shown that at some frequencies the body can absorb more energy from a 10 mW/cm2 radio wave than was formally believed. Under worst case conditions, where the body is resonant at the particular frequency and is aligned with the polarization of the field, this heating level may be rather significant in terms of the bodies' ability to thermoregulate, i.e., hold a constant body temperature. In some cases localized hot spots can develop due to the non-uniform nature of the energy deposition throughout the body structure. Because of these new insights developed during approximately the last five to seven years, there is now a new proposed ANSI standard for radio wave exposure. The new proposed standard, which as of this date has not yet been issued by ANSI, is a frequency dependent standard; i.e., the permissible limit for exposure varies according to the frequency. This variance with frequency incorporates the finding that the body dimension in relation to the
wavelength of the radio wave determines the rate of energy absorption. For frequencies within the range of 3 to 30 MHz, the new ANSI proposed standard specifies that the acceptable exposure level (S) for continuous exposure is given as
“S(mW/cm2) = 900/(f2) where
“f is the frequency expressed in units of MHz. For example, at a frequency of 3 MHz, the allowable exposure level is 100 mW/cm2. At 30 MHz the value is 1 mW/cm2. Thus the new standard permits exposures both higher and lower than the current standard limit of 10 mW/cm2.
“The new ANSI proposed standard is viewed by many as a voluntary industrial
workplace standard; I share this view. The current or old ANSI standard of 10
mW/cm2 was adopted in 1971 by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration as a legal workplace standard.
“10. The electromagnetic fields in all accessible areas near the proposed installation will be well below levels considered to be harmful to health. Probably a more perplexing problem could turn out to be the induction of radio frequency currents on conductive objects near the transmitting site. For example, metallic conduit, guttering, wire fences, metal wire clothes lines, and other such things, if not properly grounded, could have, depending on their effective length and height, substantial radio frequency voltages induced between them and the ground. A grounded individual contacting such objects could experience a shock reaction. similar to the spark often generated by walking across a rug under low humidity conditions and touching a metallic door knob. These shocks would not be harmful in their own right but could lead to startle reactions which in turn might lead to an accident. I am aware of such situations involving AM standard broadcast stations which operate on frequencies between 0.55 MHz and 1.6 MHz at an elementary school (ungrounded electrical conduits) and at a dock location where longshoremen received disturbing shocks from the crane used in loading and unloading freighter ships. It is not easy to predict the probability of such phenomena but I would think that such would be potentially possible out to a distance of one to two miles away. It appears to me that the area immediately adjacent to the proposed transmitter site is very sparsely populated, particularly in
direction of the proposed radiation beam to the north and northwest and such
conditions might have to be contrived for such shock phenomena to occur. A map of the immediate vicinity of the proposed transmitter site, shown as Figure 2B in the applicants engineering specifications of proposed operation, shows a gravel pit to the northwest within about 1.75 miles of the site. If tall machinery, such as drag lines or steam shovels, is used at that location, this would be an area to give more careful evaluation as to the potential for such phenomena to exist.
“The presence of the gravel pit suggests the possibility of quarry operations in the area and the use of electroexplosive devices (EED's) for blasting. The Navy and the Air Force have set safety standards for maximum permissible field intensities 1n areas where EED's are to be used. These standards are in the range of 1.5 - 2.0 volts per meter electric field strength or the equivalent of about 0.0006 mW/cm2. Our calculations indicate that at 10 feet above ground field intensities of this magnitude could occur out to distances of about 0.7 miles from the transmitting site.
“11. We are aware of such anecdotal reports as detection of radio waves via fillings in teeth but there is no known way of demonstrating this phenomenon, let alone predicting its occurrence near the system. A real problem, however, could be the disruption of radio and/or television reception within a few miles of the proposed installation, particularly at locations within one mile. Such radio or television interference (RI and TVI) usually occurs because of overloading the receiver with the very powerful undesired signal. Even though the receiver is not necessarily designed to receive the shortwave emissions, very strong signals will often 'blanket' an area near the station and cause substantial degradation to reception. Another potential cause of TVI can be harmonic production and radiation. Although I don't think that harmonic radiation will be a problem I have not been provided with technical specifications on the transmitter itself to judge this aspect. Interference to amateur radio and CB operators in the area could also be a problem, again due to overload in the amateur radio or CB receiver, which is not typically designed to operate properly with signals in the volt per meter field
strength range. END.”
“Mr. Richard Zaragoza
Fisher, Wayland, Cooper and Leader
1100 Connecticut Avenue, N. W.
Washington, D. C. 20036
7 April 1982
“Upon my return to the office from the NAB Convention I found the attached letter copy from Mr. Richard A. Tell of. the EPA Las Vegas Facility to Mr. Edward J. Cowan of the EPA, Seattle office. He circulated copies of the letter and attachment quite widely but did not send a copy to Mr. Charles Brieg. If Mr. Brieg has not received this information, perhaps you will want to send him one of the enclosed copies.
“In my opinion Mr. Tell of the EPA Las Vegas Facility has given us the best possible reply. Note that he references his conclusions to the "WCBC application for Construction Permit, dated August 18, 1981. This is the date on Dave Hudson's original technical presentation which became a part of our FCC application during the following October. That origina1 application had a plot plan which located the two antennas with respect to our property boundaries.
No mention was made of any requirement for additional State land. No exact location of a fence was shown. We simply mentioned in the ‘environmental statement’ that ‘appropriate fencing would be provided.
“Mr. Tell's conclusions in paragraph (1) on page 2 of his letter says, ‘The system with antenna locations as proposed in the WCBC application for construction permit, dated August 28,1981, to the Federal Communications Commission will not create electromagnetic field intensities that exceed the new ANSI proposed exposure standard for human exposure at any location beyond the perimeter of the WCBC property for any height within ten feet of the ground.’
“If Mr. Brieg will grant our Construction Permit on the basis of our original application and the above EPA conclusion, we are in the best possible position with respect to starting construction at the earliest possible moment (which we very much want to do). It seems to me that we would not have to wait for the State of Alaska to act on our request for additional land for we do not need additional land to satisfy EPA's safety requirements. Our attorney in Kenai, Mr. C. R. Baldwin, may have to approach the Kenai Borough Commissioners again before we start construction because we have received their clearance under certain specific conditions. However, we could expect the Kenai Borough Commissioners to act favorably since we could approach them with an ‘unrestricted’ FCC Construction Permit.
“In any event I wanted you and Mr. Breig to see this letter as soon as possible. I could make other comments about the confusing situation that confronted Mr. Tell, but there is no point in doing so, since Mr. Tell has very effectively cut through the confusion.
“Francis M. Perry
Director of Engineering.”
“HAMMETT & EDISON, INC.
RADIO AND TELEVISION
“April 2, 1982
“Mr. F. M. Perry
World Christian Broadcasting Corporation
P. O. Box 3857
Abilene, Texas 79604
“We have received your March 18 letter, requesting analysis of the new antenna placement layouts proposed for the WCBC shortwave facility at Kenai, Alaska. You specifically would like to know if the new proposed ANSI C95 standard will be exceeded outside the fenced enclosure. This letter is my report on the studies I have conducted, with one of your figures attached for reference. In the meantime, I have sent you xeroxed pages from the Federal Register giving details on the Radiation Hazard Warning signs prescribed by OSHA. I assume these have been received by now.
“First, I will deal with the future proposed layout depicted by Sketch #2 (attached). The focus of concern is RF signal levels expected along the northern boundary of the property, in front of the two north-directed antennas, for distances beyond 550 feet.
“In accordance with your letter, I have assumed that the future broadcast facilities will allow operation with these parameters:
“1. Three transmitters will be utilized, each with 100 kilowatts carrier power.
“2. Any two transmitters can be diplexed into any antenna, but never in the same band on the same antenna.
“3. All antennas can be slewed plus or minus 30 degrees.
“In the frequency range of interest here (3-30 MHz), the new proposed ANSI standard specifies: RFPG = 900/f2
“where RFPG = radio frequency protection guide in milliwatts per square centimeter and
“f = frequency in megahertz.
“It is readily apparent that the higher the frequency, the more stringent is the RFPG.
“Our analysis is based on assuming the "worst-case" operating configuration of transmitters, antennas, and frequencies. This condition is attained when two transmitters operate into the high-band antenna, on the 17 and 21 MHz bands, and the third transmitter operates into the low-band antenna on the 11 MHz band. The maximum allowable RFPG numbers for these three bands are:
“Band 1. = 21 MHz, RFPG = 1.90 mW/cm2
Band 2. = 17 MHz, RFPG = 2.81 mW/cm2
Band 3. = 11 MHz, RFPG = 6.28 mW/cm2
“With reference to the attached sketch, we next computed the signal levels expected at Points A and B (7 feet above ground) on each of the three frequencies as specified in the worst-case condition. The antenna parameters used were those specified by TCI, and an imperfect earth was assumed. Then we determined the fraction of new proposed RFPG incurred by each signal at the same points. The sum of the three fractions gives the total fraction of the RFPG for the three signals together.
“The following table gives the results of the analysis for a distance of 550 feet:
“Frequency = 21 MHz,
Signal Level at point B = 0.112 mW/cm2 (20.6 V/m),
% of new ANSI RFPG = 6.4.
“Frequency = 17 MHz,
Signal Level B = 0.112 mW/cm2 (20.6 V/m),
% of new ANSI RFPG = 4.0.
“Frequency = 11 MHz,
Signal Level A = 0.014 mW/cm2 (7.31 V/m),
% of new ANSI RFPG = 0.22.
“The sum of the three percent values is 10.6%, which means that the combined ‘worst-case’ effect of the signals is approximately one-tenth of the amount which would be permitted under the proposed ANSI standard. In converting the computed field strengths in volts/meter to equivalent power flux densities in milliwatts/square centimeter, we have assumed plane wave conditions-a reasonable assumption at this distance.
“It is noteworthy to mention that, in the case of the low-band TCI 611 antenna, the signal strength to be expected at the top of the fence 550 feet away is less than that at the same height at about 750 feet. Of course, the maximum value expected beyond 550 feet is the value reported here. In the case of the high-band antenna, all signals decrease at all points beyond 550 feet.
“We are not able to rigorously compute the RF signal levels at the southern boundary closest to the western set of antennas. It is my opinion from experience that those levels would be below the new ANSI RFPG’s. Any computation of near-field signal strength at the side and rear would be much less reliable than actual measurements around an existing antenna.
“A parallel analysis was conducted under the same set of ‘worst-case’ conditions, but with the fence at 750 feet. Here are the results:
“Frequency = 21 MHz,
Signal Level at point B = 0.049 mW/cm2 (13.6 V/m),
% of new ANSI RFPG = 2.6.
“Frequency = 17 MHz,
Signal Level at point B = 0.049 mW/cm2 (13.6 V/m),
% of new ANSI RFPG = 1.7.
“Frequency = 11 MHz,
Signal Level at point A = 0.014 mW/cm2 (7.31 V/m).
% of new ANSI RFPG = 0.22.
“Hence, the combined effect of the worst-case condition is 4.5% of the new proposed ANSI standard.
“We are not able to rigorously analyze the TCI 516-3 log periodic antenna because TCI could not give us reliable information on individual radiator fields and phases. However, due to the much lower gain (14.5 dBi) than that of Model 611, the signal levels encountered at 512 feet in front would be expected to be lower than those 550 feet in front of a Model 611 antenna.
“If I can be of any further help, please let me know.
“David E. Hudson
“cc: Dr. Robert E. Scott, Mr. Richard R. Zaragoza, Attachment.”
May 1982 -
May 13, 1982 - World Christian Broadcasting Receives FCC Construction Permit To Construct International Short Wave Station At Anchor Point, Alaska.
The approval by the FCC of the construction permit was officially announced in the following letter from the WCBC attorney in Washington, D. C.:
FISHER, WAYLAND, COOPER AND LEADER
1100 CONNECTICUT AVENUE, N. W.
WASHINGTON, D. C. 20036
“May 14, 1982
“Robert E. Scott, EdD, President
World Christian Broadcasting Corporation
301 South Pioneer Drive
P. O. Box 3857
Abilene, TX 79604
“Enclosed you will find an undated copy of your construction permit with five conditions attached. My warmest congratulations. We got the job done just in the nick of time.
“We have been informed the permit was actually granted May 13, 1982. Since it was granted under delegated authority, the full Commission has the right to reconsider it within forty days of May 13. It is rare that the Commission would do it on their own motion. It normally has to be prompted by some sort of complaint or other protest. However, as I mentioned to you, the Commission wouldn't take the action without fully considering the views of the Broadcast Bureau which granted the permit in the first instance and, of course, this case shows extraordinary care and extensive analysis in deciding to grant the permit.
“Charlie Breig told me that perhaps as early as next week, they will issue a response to Ms. Feiler's earlier letter. They are not treating her letter as a petition to deny or even as an informal objection to our application, but rather as a letter
from a public citizen asking general questions about radiation hazards.
“From the standpoint of anyone seeking to have the Broadcast Bureau reconsider its action, such a petition for reconsideration does not lie unless the person first protested the application. However, it is possible the Commission would entertain it anyway particularly if it were filed by Ms. Feiler. Such a petition would have to be filed within thirty days of thepublic notice announcing the grant. Accordingly, we areworking with the staff to get this grant on a public notice as soon as possible so the thirty day time period can begin to run.
“As to the conditions on the CP, I believe they are reasonable. Conditions 1 and 3, we specifically agreed to accept. Condition 2 is not really implicit in the grant. Condition 4 is simply to allow the FCC to know a little better what is going to happen on an actual operating basis as distinguished from theoretical projections. I think if you are going to try to work backwards from a formal start up date that you should take into consideration the fact that this condition may slow you down a little bit to permit your coordination with the FCC and the EPA for measuring purposes. Condition 5 simply reflects a standard concern on the part of the Commission.
“Once again, congratulations.
“Very truly yours,
“Richard R. Zaragoza
cc w/enc: F. M. Perry
David E. Hudson
“P.S. Make sure that when you order your equipment, which you may not wish to do until the matter is final, that you secure a representation from the manufacturer that the field intensity projections relied upon by the FCC, the EPA and us which will be generated from their equipment will hold up and that if there is any problem, they will pick up all costs and expenses of making their equipment do what they have told everyone it will do.”
F. M. and Charlotte were anticipating their departure for a sojourn in Anchor Point, Alaska. Their plan was to drive up to Alaska in their 1979 Chevy Suburban pulling their Airstream Trailer. Their son Charlie decided to take some time off from his work to accompany them on the trip. When the time actually arrived to go, they decided to spare Charlotte the grind of the long trip. Charlie and F. M. would drive while Charlotte followed by air.
As F. M. remembers, he was working in the WCBC Abilene office in early May. Understanding that the FCC approval of the application was imminent, he and Charlotte had returned to their home in northern Virginia to prepare the house for a long vacancy. The following letter gives some of the details:
“18 May 1982
Dr. Robert E. Scott
World Christian Broadcasting Corporation
P. O. Box 3857
Abilene, Texas 79604
“As I mentioned to you on the telephone. my son Charlie will accompany me on my drive to Alaska. Charlotte and I feel that it will be better for Charlotte's health if she does not partake of the 'driving grind' for two weeks or so in order to accompany us. So she will 'fly' up to Anchorage on June 21. Charlie and I should have been there for a few days by that time.
“It would be helpful if I could get a cash advance to assist with cash purchases of gasoline during the trip. Usually gasoline is cheaper if one pays in cash. I calculate that an advance of $750 should be sufficient. We will have funds of our own, of course. and we will have credit cards in case of unusual financial needs.
“Charlie and I plan to start June 1. We really don't know how long the trip will take but we think we should be at Anchor Point sometime during the week June 15-19.
“Charlotte and I had full physical examinations just after we got home here from Texas. I am in excellent health and Charlotte has only minor problems that we already knew about. They do not impair her activities. I think we will both enjoy living in the Anchor Point area.
“We'll be in touch with you before we leave.
“F. M. Perry.”
(To be continued.)