Roadmap to the DTV Program and System Information Protocol

The Program and System Information Protocol (PSIP) is the glue that holds the digital television (DTV) signal together. PSIP is an important standard of the Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC), implementation of which is required by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for broadcasters in the U.S.


For Your Information:

Although proper implementation of PSIP at the television station level is not particularly complex, neither is it always straightforward. The intent of this Web site is to explain the operator-oriented elements of PSIP and to provide practical examples of typical station operation, as well as to provide guidelines for designers of PSIP-related hardware and software to optimize user interface information for such equipment.

A wide variety of resourcs are available to help all segments of the DTV industry properly implement PSIP. Please consider the following:

Top Reasons for Using PSIP

PSIP Informational Documents


The PSIP Standard

ATSC Standard A/65C:
Program and System Information Protocol for Terrestrial Broadcast and Cable, Rev. C with Amendment No. 1
2 January 2005, Download PDF File
This document defines a standard for System Information (SI) and Program Guide (PG) data compatible with digital multiplex bit streams constructed in accordance with ISO/IEC 13818-1 (MPEG-2 Systems). The document defines the standard protocol for transmission of the relevant data tables contained within packets carried in the transport stream multiplex. The protocol defined herein is referred to as Program and System Information Protocol (PSIP).

ATSC Recommended Practice A/69:
Program and System Information Protocol Implementation Guidelines for Broadcasters
25 June 2002, Download PDF File
This document provides a set of guidelines for the use and implementation of the ATSC Program and System Information Protocol. The information contained herein applies to broadcasters, network operators, infrastructure manufacturers, and receiver manufacturers.


About the ATSC

The Advanced Television Systems Committee, Inc., is an international, non-profit organization developing voluntary standards for digital television. The ATSC member organizations represent the broadcast, broadcast equipment, motion picture, consumer electronics, computer, cable, satellite, and semiconductor industries. Specifically, ATSC is working to coordinate television standards among different communications media focusing on digital television, interactive systems, and broadband multimedia communications. ATSC is also developing digital television implementation strategies and presenting educational seminars on the ATSC standards.

ATSC was formed in 1982 by the member organizations of the Joint Committee on InterSociety Coordination (JCIC): the Electronic Industries Association (EIA), the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), the National Cable Television Association (NCTA), and the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE). Currently, there are approximately 160 members representing the broadcast, broadcast equipment, motion picture, consumer electronics, computer, cable, satellite, and semiconductor industries.

ATSC Digital TV Standards include digital high definition television (HDTV), standard definition television (SDTV), data broadcasting, multichannel surround-sound audio, and satellite direct-to-home broadcasting.

Document Formats

ATSC documents are available in the Adobe Acrobat (PDF) format. If you do not have Adobe Acrobat Reader, you may download a free reader from Adobe.


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