Snap election in Ireland – Going beyond to broadcast under extreme conditions

12th February 2020

The challenge

A few weeks ago our broadcast team were contacted by RTE (Ireland’s No 1 broadcaster) who had an immediate challenge and needed our expertise.

The Irish government announced a snap general election and RTE needed to broadcast results in real time from multiple locations. 11 of these locations were identified for satellite broadband to work its magic and ensure that people across Ireland could get the latest election results as they happened.

They knew they could count on us to deliver as in 2016 we used our Newspotter service to transmit live coverage and interviews from 17 counting stations and political headquarters across Ireland, where there was limited or no access to high-speed terrestrial broadband.

Delivering a solution working quickly with trusted broadcast partners

Once we confirmed the locations, we sprang into action with our installation partner Trademark Communications. We worked in close partnership to install and commission the equipment across all 11 sites and made sure that everything was tested to the extreme as storm Ciara was predicted hit the country at the time of the election.

Our bigblu technical support team proceeded with their own final technical tests with our partner Auriga Core Networks ensured all video traffic was routed to Dublin and onwards to the Donnybrook Studios. Our technical team at Bicester HQ were also on standby to complement RTE’s own on-the ground support team should there be any issues.

Result: Seamless streaming for over 20 hours

By pulling together, planning and executing our broadcast solution, we delivered continuous video streaming for all 11 counting stations for 20 hours, working with RTE’s own outside broadcast teams during the extreme weather conditions. The entire operation went without incident and the Technical Team at bigblu HQ in Bicester were on hand and engaged throughout the broadcast. As a result the standby technical support staff in Ireland were not needed.

The Special Project Team at bigblu showed that in the face of tight timescales, extreme weather and multiple locations we deliver an exceptional outcome! Well done to all involved.