The UK Home Office has flagged up its intention to issue tenders for the procurement of air-to-ground radio devices for use on the new Emergency Services Network (ESN). A Prior Information Notice (PIN) was published in the Official Journal of the European Community on 20 September 2016.
The Air to Ground (A2G) Devices Project is one of a number of separate tenders that will make up ESN, which is being managed by the Home Office’s Emergency Services Mobile Communications Programme (ESMCP) team.
The Home Office is looking for dual mode solutions that combine 4G LTE broadband and TETRA narrowband – the current solution provided by the existing Airwave emergency services network.
The intention is that emergency services personnel will use TETRA above 500ft to communicate with aircraft and 4G LTE provided by EE’s mobile network below 500ft. The A2G coverage solution will be provided by EE’s commercial base stations, but with additional 2.345 GHZ spectrum shared with the Ministry of Defence.
The PIN states: ‘The Project is currently working with user organisations and further developing its requirements. As part of this process, industry engagement is required to refine certain technical points. The Home Office is therefore issuing an RFI Questionnaire and will be hosting a supplier briefing event accordingly.
The PIN also stats that the ‘standalone procurement of A2G devices may or may not include separate lots within it’.
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