After a catastrophic failure in the exciter on Oct. 30, 2013, and a few months operating at reduced wattage, 88.5 The Edge WMUW-FM is back at its full power of 1,000 Watts.
“Well, the part of the transmitter called the exciter, a component in it failed,” said Eric Harlan, a communication instructor and the WMUW advisor. “What the exciter does, it is literally the transmitter, and it takes the programming from the control room and creates our FM signal at 88.5 MHz.”
Harlan discussed the repair process, saying that he contacted William Fulgham, the station engineer, who confirmed that the exciter was damaged and loaned the station an exciter while he worked on the station’s.
As of November 2013 the station was running at a fraction of its normal power. The station still webcast its programming throughout the situation.
“He [Fulgham] got us back on at low power. We were off for three days and we remained on at low power until we got a new tube,” said Harlan.
As of 6 p.m. on Feb. 21, the station was back running at full power.
“Friday afternoon, 20 Feb., Mr. Fulgham brought us a new tube,” said Harlan. “We worked from about 4:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. We worked on the transmitter, and then [Harlan and Fulgham worked] 10 a.m. Saturday to 6 Saturday night we had the thing on at full power.”
Now that the station is at full power, the entire coverage area is now able to listen, including all of Columbus, some of Starkville and a little bit of Northwest Alabama.
“I like getting callers,” said Janna Ingan, a junior communication major from Bloomington, Ind., and cohost of “The 5:00 Freakout,” a show on WMUW.
“We do shoutouts on our show, and we get really excited to get callers. If more people are listening, more people will call.”
WMUW is the student radio station at MUW and offers various programs hosted by students, faculty and alumni of MUW.