KUAC FM will be off the air for about a week, beginning the afternoon of July 30, to install a new transmitter and antenna on Ester Dome. The work will increase the public radio station’s reliability and on-air consistency. The original project start date of July 22 was postponed due to routine construction delays.
“We would like to stress that taking KUAC FM off the air is necessary in order to complete the project and has nothing to do with the current state budget situation,” said Keith Martin, KUAC general manager.
During construction, listeners will be able to receive KUAC FM by livestreaming at KUAC.org on their computers, smartphones or tablets. They may also tune into KUAC TV 9.6, use the NPR app on their smartphones or tablets, or ask their smart speakers to play KUAC.
The equipment to be replaced is more than 23 years old and is beyond its life expectancy. The new equipment will make KUAC FM less susceptible to weather-related problems and power outages.
In addition to Fairbanks and areas nearby, the communities of Nenana, Delta Junction and Healy will be affected by the outage because their translators rebroadcast a signal from the transmitter on Ester Dome. Bettles, Eagle, Nome and Tok will still receive KUAC FM over the air, as their translators are fed via satellite.
Members of the public can find information throughout the construction by visiting KUAC.org and following KUAC on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. KUAC is a service of the University of Alaska Fairbanks.