Arbitron, in response to the tragic earthquake in Haiti, has partnered with radio manufacturer Eton Corporation to send solar powered, crank powered, multi-function radios to Haitian earthquake victims. “Radio is the lifeline keeping Haitians informed and connected during this tragedy. We felt it was important to ensure that they had access to this necessary resource,” noted William Kerr, Arbitron’s new President and CEO.
These radios will be receiving important info from Commando Solo, an Air Force C-130 that broadcasts from the sky. The plane makes slow and lazy ovals over the affected area with a 264-foot weighted wire dangling from its belly like a plumb line.
The long wire, kept vertical by a 500-pound lead weight, is helping transmit an AM radio signal to the people of Haiti. Four other antennae on the wings and fuselage are sending FM signals, says CNN.
The U.S. government is using Commando Solo to deliver news and information to the survivors of the earthquake. During much of the day, the plane relays live broadcasts of VOA news call-in shows in Creole, the native tongue of Haiti.