dPMR Case Studies

The systems examples below are not an exhaustive list but do show how dPMR can be applied across a wide range of low, medium and high profile mission critical applications.

Featured Case Studies


Cadarache Nuclear Research Facility - France (dPMR™ Mode 3)

The very nature of the facility this system is installed dictates that highly reliable communications are essential.
Read More

Fleury Merogis Prison- France
(dPMR™ Mode 3)

The biggest prison in Europe, Fleury Merogis is also host to a dPMR Mode 3 multisite trunked system.
Read More

French and Belgian Prisons
(dPMR™ Mode 2)

dPMR is being implemented into most all of the prisons in France and Belgium. dPMR was chosen for the initial four year period. The tender was put out again and dPMR was again selected. Read More

Major Eurotunnel
construction project

Kenwood’s Pro-Talk dPMR radios have recently been deployed to help a leading UK company to install an additional 8.5Kms of security fencing and more than 40 pedestrian and vehicle gates at the euro tunnel in France. Read More

Sharjarh Airport (UAE)

The international airport of Sharjah has employed a joint Icom and Fylde Micro dPMR Mode 3 fully managed trunking radio system based on the narrow band dPMR technology. The system provides eight simultaneous radio channels for the general operation requirements. Read More

On the road with dPMR 446

The provision of mobile communications on a motorbike is fraught with problems; from simple physical issues such as where to place a PTT when the rider needs both hands on the controls at all times, to how to ensure a reliable RF link with no significant earth for a antenna placement. Read More

The Wordsworth Trust

Dove Cottage in Grasmere UK was the first family home of Britain’s best loved poet, William Wordsworth. Kenwoods ProTalk Digital dPMR446 radios have become a vital part of managing 60 thousand visitors each year. Read More

 

Project: Cadarache Nuclear Research Facility - France
Technology: dPMR (Mode 3)
Manufacturer: ICOM

ICOM IDAS Mode 3
Fully Trunked Communications
with IPBX (SIP) telephone interfaces

The very nature of the facility this system is installed into dictates that highly reliable communications are essential. The Cadarache research facility has been at the forefront of nuclear energy research for over half a century, and decided on a dPMR Mode 3 single site trunked system to carry its onsite communications into the digital age.
Cadarache is currently in the spotlight as the development of the world’s largest nuclear fusion reactor (ITER) is in progress at the facility with dPMR providing the daily communication requirements in the background.

Some of the features/requirements of the system are explained below:

  • Single site 8 channel digital trunking system
  • IPBX (SIP) telephone interfaces
  • Backup system with conventional radio channels and “suitcase” style portable repeater sites for emergencies or if the main system goes down for any reason
  • Dedicated data channel (status, short messages, GPS localization etc.)
  • Safety functions such as man down, stun/kill, ambient listening and radio alarm management
  • System management and Dispatch components including asset tracking application

Information kindly provided by Icom France S.A.S

 

Project: Fleury Merogis Prison - France
Technology: dPMR (Mode 3)
Manufacturer: ICOM

ICOM IDAS Mode 3
Trunked Migration System
from Analogue MPT1327

The biggest prison in Europe, Fleury Merogis is also host to a dPMR Mode 3 multisite trunked system. However, it is a system that has been achieved from a real-life analogue to digital migration installation. The original system was an MPT1327 analogue system. As dPMR is an FDMA based protocol, the benefits of already knowing the system scale and coverage pattern for example, made the choice to go with an inherently similar architecture less difficult.
The real difficulty of this particular system was the requirement to still use the current MPT system, during the phasing in of the dPMR digital system. This required the terminals (analogue terminals from two different manufacturers) and infrastructure of both systems to be able communicate within the same system. Since the dPMR Mode 3 controller that was used had the ability to allow cross-protocol communications, there was no need for down time during the digital installation.

Some of the features/requirements of the system are explained below:

  • Two site, 12 channel digital trunking system
  • IPBX (SIP) telephone interface
  • Communications compatibility (capability) between MPT analogue and dPMR digital terminals. This was done via programming of MPT and dPMR call ID’s in each terminal.
  • Backup system with Regional Control Server
  • A data channel (status, short messages etc.)
  • Safety functions such as man down, stun/kill, ambient listening and radio alarm management
  • System management and Dispatch components including asset tracking application to be used in 6 different locations

This system reflects dPMR’s expanding use in mission critical environments and situations as well as its flexibility to suit implementation in phased system build outs when necessary. Information kindly provided by Icom France S.A.S.

 

Project: French and Belgian Prisons
Technology: dPMR (Mode 2)
Manufacturer: ICOM

ICOM IDAS Mode 2
dPMR is being implemented into most all of the prisons
in France and Belgium.

For French Prisons:

Beginning five years ago, a national tender was issued where all digital protocols on offer were given the opportunity to show their suitability to cover the needs of a similar common entity with slightly differing requirements. dPMR was chosen for the initial four year period. The tender was put out again and dPMR was again selected.

For Belgium Prisons:

Following a review of existing technologies in the market, the “Régie des bâtiments” (Government building regulator) in charge of the prisons in Belgium launched a tender to equip all the prisons with dPMR radios. dPMR was chosen for this project based on the scalability and the reliability of the solution. A full set of services have been implemented in the prisons like guard tour and indoor tracking of staff etc.
In both of the examples above, depending on the size of each prison, coverage requirements, staff tracking requirements using the guard tour system differed slightly at each individual prison. In both entities, dPMR is highly valued for its versatility and reliability in protecting the staff of all the prisons. Information kindly provided by Icom France S.A.S.

 

Project: major Eurotunnel construction project
Technology: dPMR (PMR 446)
Manufacturer: Kenwood

Kenwood ProTalk dPMR 446 providing Jacksons Fencing with clear digital communications at major Eurotunnel construction project

Jacksons Fencing is one of the UK’s leading designers, manufacturers and installers of security fencing and access control systems and a long standing user of Kenwood ProTalk analogue radios at its three locations in Ashford, Bath and Chester, where they are put to work in providing on-site communications between management, health and safety, manufacturing and operations teams.
The company has recently completed the installation of 8.5km of security fencing and more than 40 pedestrian and vehicle gates at the Eurotunnel Terminal, Coquelles, France as part of a high-profile Anglo-French initiative to upgrade safety and security at the terminal’s 41.8km perimeter against illegal migration activity.

The project had to be delivered against an extremely tight deadline of eight weeks from confirmation of the order and by the end of the first week, Jacksons already had a seventy strong team on site having created a secure compound for its plant, materials and site welfare facilities.


As the teams would be working at four key locations spread throughout the perimeter of the terminal, the logistics of supplying each team with materials from the central compound as they arrived from the UK posed a constant challenge to Jacksons Fencing’s Contracts Manager, Steve Hancock, who was based in Coquelles throughout the contract period. Steve commented: “We knew that delivery of the project called for reliable, seamless communications – when you have seventy people working flat-out on different elements of the project at the same time across four locations; the last thing you need is for anyone to be held up waiting for materials or being unclear as to what to do next.

 

Kenwood ProTalk TK-3401D dPMR digital handportable radios proved to be the ideal solution, Steve continued: “The simple controls of the radio were familiar to the users which along with the extended range and clarity of digital technology and the fact that they were license-free made them perfect. All we had to do was to ensure the radios were set to digital operation, the batteries charged overnight at the end of each working day and we were good to go. I couldn’t be more pleased with how they performed and helped in getting this project completed on time!”

Mobile phone reception could not be guaranteed and frankly, they are not rugged enough for this type of use either, so we asked Kenwood if they could help us with a communications solution which we could deploy quickly and importantly, be suitable for site conditions and easy to use”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Project: On the road with dPMR 446
Technology: dPMR (PMR 446)
Manufacturer: Kenwood

ProTalk Digital dPMR446.
Radios maintain effective communication from between 50 and 100% further than
conventional analogue 446 radios.

A system commonly in use in the biking world makes use of PMR446 licence-free radios in conjunction with a bike-specific control and interface box. This provides a VOX (voice operated switch) operation to remove the need for a PTT, an intercom solution so that the rider and pillion can communicate, a power supply so that the radio is not reliant on battery operation and finally, interfaces to helmet-mounted microphones and speakers. Mounting the radio on the handlebars provides a reasonably high position for the antenna and allows the radio display to still be visible to the rider. This method has solved many of the issues but still some problems remain. In particular, the quality of analogue voice reception varies enormously from quite good to unbearably noisy and "choppy" as the RF signal fluctuates in strength, due to variations in the radio path and interference from other systems. The continual noise and hiss of an analogue radio in your ear during a long ride is both annoying and distracting - and distraction can result in dire consequences on a bike.

 

 

 

Crystal clear voice communication with no hiss, warbles or background noise

Graham and Karen have been riding bikes for years for both work and pleasure and it is when riding in company that they make the most use of their PMR 446 radios, for warning following riders of potential hazards and to provide directions and general communication. They have equipped both of their bikes (and those of many of their friends) with Kenwood analogue PMR446 radios, which have performed well enough but recently, they upgraded to the latest Kenwood ProTalk TK-3401DE Digital dPMR446 radios. Their initial test from home (in rural Somerset, UK) with demonstration units was enough to convince them to purchase their own hand portable units.The most immediate advantages they noticed were the crystal clear voice communication - no hiss, warbles or background noise - and the increased range - 50 to 100% improvement in range over analogue PMR446.

 

 

 

 

Graham comments: “In our hilly rural environment, the analogue radios became unusable about half a mile from home, whereas the ProTalk dPMR446 radios maintained effective communication for between 50 and 100% further (depending on the intervening topology and obstructions). Also of significant importance was the fact that the dPMR446 radios are ‘plug and play’ replacements to our existing analogue radios, so that the investment in the intercom and interfacing system was not wasted and the swap-over was as simple as changing the battery”. Although many of their friends are now migrating to digital technology, for those that have yet to upgrade, the Kenwood radios also provide an analogue mode so that they can still be used to talk to the analogue user community. During a recent road trip around Europe with another pair of riders, on the fast autobahns to the Harz mountain range in Northern Germany and onto the flat plains of Holland, they proved that the performance of the dPMR radios was exemplary and, thanks to the harmonised PMR446 frequencies across most of Europe, they were legal to use.

 

Membership of the dPMR Association and certification by the dPMR Technical Working Group has also meant that the Kenwood ProTalk Digital radio is fully compatible with other dPMR446 radios from other manufacturers (during the initial trial with the Kenwood radios, I was sat at home talking to both riders using an Icom IC-4029SDR dPMR446 radio whilst they rode away into the sunset).

 

Article by Derek Love, Chairman dPMR Association Technical Working Group.

 

 

Project: The Wordsworth Trust - Dove Cottage
Technology: dPMR (PMR 446)
Manufacturer: Kenwood

ProTalk Digital dPMR446.
Bringing words to life at the home of William Wordsworth.

 

Enhancing the visitor experience for 60,000 people each year

 

 

Every year, millions of adventurers, tourists and day-trippers flock to the Lake District in North West England. Some are attracted by the backdrop of mountains and lakes but many others come to find out more about the artists and poets who were inspired by the stunning landscape.

 

Dove Cottage in Grasmere was the first family home of Britain’s best loved poet, William Wordsworth, and is where he wrote most of his poetry including the most famous poem in the English language, ‘I wandered lonely as a cloud’, otherwise known as The Daffodils poem.

 

 

The Cottage is preserved as it was when he left in 1808 and still contains his furniture and personal possessions. A museum next door tells the story of his life and displays original manuscripts, paintings and interactive exhibits from the Wordsworth Trust’s collection of over 36,000 items.

 

Around 60,000 visitors explore the house and garden each year to discover more about Wordsworth’s amazing life and the logistics of handling such crowds is a daunting task within the confines of a small site.

 

An important source of revenue for the Wordsworth Trust is group visits and these come from many countries around the world. On a busy day, up to 15 parties might arrive, consisting of 30 – 50 members. The rooms in Dove Cottage are small, meaning that a maximum of 15 people can go on a guided tour at one time. These groups are usually pre-booked but they have to be scheduled so as not to disappoint others who arrive independently.

 

Managing the flow of visitors during peak times is a complex balancing act which relies on good communication but this isn’t easy. Whilst the Museum and shop / ticket office are equipped with phones, computers etc., Dove Cottage has remained unchanged.

 

 

 

The Wordsworth Trust Dove Cottage Grasmere Cumbria LA22 9SH United Kingdom T: +44 (0)15394 35544 W: wordsworth.org.uk

 

The Cottage itself was built in the early 1600s and is set into the hillside. The Museum was originally a Victorian coach house and stable block for a local hotel and the shop was a blacksmith’s premises. They are all constructed of local stone and the walls are very thick.

 

A handful of walkie talkies were bought in the 1990s but were of limited use, being unable to get a signal inside the various buildings. Mobile phones don’t perform much better so, until recently, this visitor attraction relied on ‘runners’ to coordinate operations.

 

 

In early 2014 a new Visitor Services Manager, Jane Affleck, came to work at Dove Cottage and she soon identified that better communications would save time and effort and deliver a better visitor experience. Some online research revealed that the latest generation of PMR446 licence-free two way radios might provide a simple, discreet and effective means of communication.

 

She spoke to a few suppliers and settled on the Kenwood Pro-Talk TK-3401D Digital PMR446 because of the rugged construction of their handsets, their reputation for reliability, the simple controls and the proven dPMR digital signal option which, she hoped, would operate effectively given the construction of the buildings.

 

“It has worked out really well” reports Jane, “We now have four hand-portables which provide clear voice communications between key staff operating in and around the Museum, the Shop, where groups check in, the guides and the duty manager. The thick stone walls don’t seem to be a problem at all when we operate in digital mode.”

 

This has brought real efficiencies and flexibility to the visitor attraction. Shop staff who welcome visitors can stay at their posts; guides in the Cottage know when groups arrive and can be told if there any issues or special requirements to deal with.

 

“Our main problem now” adds Jane, “is getting our long-standing staff to remember to use the radios when they have been used to running things without any technology to help them. For others, the ProTalk dPMR digital radios have already become a vital part of their everyday equipment.”

 

 

 

Project: Sharjarh Airport (UAE)
Technology: dPMR (Mode 3)
Manufacturer: Icom / Fylde Micro

The design goal was to provide a flexible radio communication system which supports a centralized application system for user management and monitoring.

The international airport of Sharjah has employed a digital trunking radio system based on the narrow band dPMR technology. The system provides eight simultaneous radio channels for the general operation requirements.

 

The design goal was to provide a flexible radio communication system which supports a centralised application system for user management and monitoring. The system operates in dPMR Mode 3 and supports full trunking capabilities for maximum channel recourse availability, particularly during peak traffic hours.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Due to the digital nature of the radio terminals, background noise is highly suppressed allowing reliable and clear radio communication which is of vital importance in a high noise environment like an airport. This ensures clear communication between the airport staff as well as enhancing security.

 

Information kindly provided by Lambda Electronics (UAE)

 

 

Other notable high profile projects:


  • United Nations-Geneva (UNHCR HQ, Place de Nations, WIPO, Human Rights)
  • UN installed systems in South Sudan and Afghanistan
  • ITU HQ-Geneva
  • French Red Cross
  • French Presidential guard services
  • French Ministry of Defence/French Home Office
  • City of Cannes (France)
  • Russian regional Police
  • European Diplomatic service armoured vehicles
  • Docklands Light Railway (London UK)

More case studies coming soon.