Systems integrator TSL has won the contract to upgrade BBC Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales’ playout operations to HD.

It means that each nation’s channel will be able to broadcast to national schedules, showing true HD and up-scaled programmes.

“The overall challenge with this project is the amount of planning involved”, said TSL director of systems David Gunn.

“During live playout, we’ll be replacing sections of SD circuitry and interfacing new HD systems around each of the nations’ existing infrastructures.”

TSL said that key aspects of the upgrade at each site will include an additional channel of Miranda’s Colossus automated playout system, Pixel Power Logovision graphics engines, Harmonic Mediacentre servers and Snell Sirius routers.

Axon kit will provide originated Dolby surround and upmixing stereo to 5.1, together with new HD video and surround sound audio monitoring equipment.

TSL built the original BBC Nations SD playout facilities in Glasgow, Cardiff and Belfast in 2007.

The first HD upgrade is due to take place at BBC Northern Ireland later this year, with the project due for completion by the first quarter of next year.