Gateway to effective communication

The SRG3000 TETRA Gateway is a flexible, adaptable and fully-featured
mobile Terrestrial Trunked Radio (TETRA) device designed to meet the
demanding needs of users within the emergency services.

Sep 9, 2010
By Paul Jacques

The SRG3000 TETRA Gateway is a flexible, adaptable and fully-featured mobile Terrestrial Trunked Radio (TETRA) device designed to meet the demanding needs of users within the emergency services.

Sepura SRG gateway radios can transmit at 10W and Sepura hand-held radios at up to 1.8W – providing the greatest operational range of any TETRA terminal on the market today.  
The global positioning system (GPS) capability in Sepura radios makes it much easier to pinpoint an officer’s location and so target support more effectively – adding an extra layer of confidence and safety.

Extending network coverage using a Sepura SRG gateway radio in gateway mode helps officers stay safe by enabling communications in network ‘dead spots’, such as underground car parks or tower blocks. It can also be applied in many other situations to give officers a critical lifeline to stay in touch.

For example, in many police stations the custody suite is shrouded in more concrete and steelwork than other offices – proving a challenge for radio coverage.

Officers working can be isolated and out of touch with the control room and the rest of the station.

But at around £60,000, adding a second TETRA antenna to extend network coverage is prohibitively expensive, especially for a large force with many stations and custody suites.

By strategically locating a Sepura SRG gateway radio near the entrance to the custody suite and connecting it to the station’s TETRA antenna, you can effectively create an in-building wireless solution that brings communications to the custody suite at a fraction of the cost – less than ten per cent – and disruption of installing a second antenna.  

Officers maintain unbroken contact with the control room simply by switching their handhelds to gateway mode as they enter the custody suite. If there’s a problem they can call for assistance; and they will be more aware of what is going on elsewhere in the station.

Because the control room can contact them directly, it can quickly and efficiently redeploy them if necessary.

According to the TETRA deployment manager at one police force where the solution is already in use: “The option of using a Sepura gateway allowed an effective, straightforward and speedy answer at a fraction of the cost of other solutions.”

Another scenario is when emergency services attend an incident in a building that does not have TETRA network coverage – they lose contact with the control room, they can’t report progress, or request assistance if the situation deteriorates.

In-vehicle Sepura SRG gateway radios can be used to provide an easy-to-use mobile communication system that ‘goes with the user’ to the incident. Radio users arriving at the building in question select gateway operation; this can be triggered by a switch on the dashboard, the removal of the vehicle’s ignition key, by the on-board computer or even by remote signalling from the control room. Once inside the building, they can have voice and data communications with the control room and each other through the gateway. Releasing the handbrake on leaving the scene automatically switches the SRG back to TMO (Trunked Mode Operation).

It can also be used to provide critical back-up for a large-scale outdoor event. By connecting a Voice over IP (VoIP) router to an SRG gateway radio near the event’s location, a police force or an ambulance authority can create a back-up communication solution if the TETRA network in the local area becomes overloaded or fails completely – a particular risk in rural areas where there are fewer base stations per TETRA antenna. This allows emergency personnel on duty to continue to communicate with each other and the control room, via the agency’s IP network.

Richard Redgrave: Regional Sales Director, UK & Ireland

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