TWC 2012: Cassidian unveils new TETRA switch, base station and vehicular router

TWC 2012 also saw the launch of Cassidian’s DXT3 high-capacity TETRA switch, the TB3s TETRA base station with LTE inside and the announcement that it is working with Korea’s APSI on TEDS modems

TWC 2012: Cassidian unveils new TETRA switch, base station and vehicular router

Cassidian unveiled a wide range of products at TETRA World Congress 2012. Besides the Evercor 400MHz LTE solution with Alcatel-Lucent and its TH1n small TETRA radio, it also launched its DXT3 small, high capacity TETRA switch, its TB3 TETRA base station with LTE inside and the TBSp – its smallest ever TETRA base station.

Other products included: a vehicle router; a Radio Console Dispatch system; a Public Warning System; a new Network Management solution, TETRA/TEDS for Smart Grids applications; and its Tactilon for subscriber management product.

DXT3c TETRA switch
The DXT3c TETRA switch offers complete functionality in a compact form. The new DXT3c switch is as small as the familiar TB3 base station and one third the size of the powerful DXT3 switch.

Cassidian sees the DXT3c switch as an attractive choice for applications such as airports and harbours, metro lines, large towns and small cities, which want a compact switch that still retains the high capacity and full functionality of larger switches. It can also be deployed to provide temporary coverage where needed.

The DXT3c is less than half the weight of the DXT3 and also consumes half the power of the larger switch. The compact unit also saves space and reduces maintenance costs. Despite its small size, the new all-in-one package includes complete, best-in-class TETRA switch functionality. In addition to providing a full set of TETRA features, it packs in all the functions of a packet data gateway, base station controller and dispatcher controller as well as a multitude of application connections. The DXT3c can support more than 900 active talk groups when the average offered group traffic is 0.2 Erlangs.

Thanks to the Internet Protocol (IP) capability of the DXT3c, it can implement the “push-to-talk over LTE” function, which Cassidian demonstrated at the TETRA World Congress 2012. This means that an LTE (Long Term Evolution) subscriber with the necessary call rights will be able to use push-to-talk to participate in a TETRA group call.

‘Seamless communications and flexibility are key things that our R&D team is always looking to develop,’ said Eric Davalo, CTO of Secure Communication Solutions at Cassidian. ‘The DXT3c will take seamless operation to a new level, allowing LTE users to connect easily with TETRA talk groups. The DXT3c also brings more flexibility for network operators, enabling them to choose the preferred connectivity for each switch site separately.’

The switch is the ultimate backbone of a radio communication network: all other network elements connect to it. It supports a variety of network topologies and has been developed without compromising on the total cost of ownership of the network.

TB3s TETRA base station with broadband inside
The TB3s TETRA base station can be fitted with broadband Long Term Evolution (LTE) carriers. The TB3s is designed to offer customers a smooth upgrade path to tomorrow’s communication networks of Professional Mobile Radio (PMR) users. It includes the same powerful features as other TB3 series TETRA base stations, guarantees the same utter reliability, and it can also comfortably house broadband LTE eNode equipment that enables LTE communications in addition to regular TETRA services.

The LTE capability combines with all the usual TB3 features, from the TETRA Enhanced Data Service (TEDS) to air-interface encryption and from Type 1 Handover to base station fallback. Combining TETRA and LTE capabilities in one unit means that upgrading the network for TEDS and introducing broadband can be achieved with incremental investment. Introducing TB3s base stations into the TETRA network means that the operator can choose specifically where and when to introduce TEDS and broadband services.

The TB3s helps network owners and operators to save money, since the combined TETRA and LTE units can share antenna lines and antennas. In addition, they can use the same transmission lines to the core network and the same battery backup system. The TB3s can be operated and maintained over a remote connection, without costly site visits.

Another benefit for network operators and owners is the TB3s’s similarity to the other TB3 series base stations. The network “sees” the base stations in the same way, which makes radio network planning easier.

‘Authorities rely on radio communications, so they need a TETRA base station to provide the best service over the widest possible area,’ says Davalo. ‘The TB3s meets these requirements absolutely. In addition, it helps optimise the cost of providing this service, which is good news for network operators, owners, and taxpayers.’

TB3p mini TETRA base station
The TB3p mini TETRA base station has the same feature set as in the TB3 and TB3c base stations and is especially suited for establishing indoor radio coverage, standalone use and providing an area with temporary radio network coverage. The base station comes in one or two carrier versions and is 40 x 25 x 11cm (the two-carrier version’s height is 15cm). It weighs just 11kg (15kg for the two-carrier)

It has an extremely small carbon footprint with a power consumption of only 40W for the one-carrier version and 70W for the two-carrier, which Davalo said would provide users with a ‘significant advantage’ in power cost savings. ‘It does not need cooling equipment,’ added Davalo, ‘which also provides a significant advantage to users.’

Vehicle router
The base product configuration of the vehicle router includes smart routing, Ethernet connectors, power connector and IGS, power switch, emergency button interface , Wi-Fi and GPS antennas. The communications module compromises a modem, SIM (UICC) reader and antenna connectors.

The slots for bearer modules include a standard interface and a plug-in router expansion, while sealed caps cover unused slots. It is certified to IP55 durability and comes in a metal enclosure with integrated heat sink and an innovative locking mechanism for cables.

Written by Wireless magazine
Wireless magazine

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