ActewAGL, Australia’s first multi-utility, offers electricity, natural gas, water and wastewater services under one roof. The ActewAGL radio network supports voice and data communications for electrical, water and wastewater services. In addition, ActewAGL uses and manages their own radio network with 1,100 portable and mobile radios within a number of fleets, using the full range of call types including multi-site group and inter-fleet calls.
ActewAGL had several issues to overcome when they explored upgrading their radio network. They needed to replace their outdated equipment with a radio network that would be supported for the life of the network.
ActewAGL were operating on a Nokia ActionNet MPT 1327 network, which is no longer supported by Nokia and could not be maintained as spare parts were unavailable. A core criterion for the upgrade was a migration path from the ActionNet network to a new network which would maintain service for the existing MPT 1327 portable and mobile radio fleets operating on the ActewAGL network.
ActewAGL wanted a seamless upgrade from the Nokia ActionNet MPT 1327, full training for all maintenance staff for future operations, and full support for the product life cycle provided.
Tait was the only solution provider who could offer a migration path from their Nokia ActionNet network to a new MPT 1327 network. The Tait solution meant ActewAGL could retain full operation of their existing fleets while upgrading, without having to reprogram or replace any portable and mobile radios.
Tait delivered an eight-site TaitNet MPT 1327 radio network, which uses the 400MHz band and comprises of two geographically diverse nodes and six base station sites. The network offers ActewAGL cost effective infrastructure that allows voice and data messaging on the same network, and efficient two-way radio communications over a large geographic area. In addition, the solution includes services such as inhouse training, manufacturer support and project management to enable a smooth implementation phase and continued maintenance.
The focus for Tait was to upgrade the network to TaitNet MPT 1327 without customer interruption. A seamless transition was achieved via the utilization of a TaitNet Gateway between the Nokia ActionNet system and the new TaitNet TN5100 system node.
During the installation process, mobile and portable radios could log onto sites, irrespective of which system the site was connected to, and detail the registration to both systems – allowing calls to be placed between radios and/or inter-systems.
The TaitNet MPT network also allows for private one-to-one, fleet and group calls, as well as short data messaging, which provides more efficient management of communications for ActewAGL’s business divisions. The network can also host multiple simultaneous conversations, which is especially important when dispatching different crews for a coordinated response.
Tait provided a holistic solution, which included the network build, project management, installation and maintenance to ensure the ActewAGL network is used to its full capacity now and in the future.
ActewAGL experienced a seamless transition from the old Nokia ActionNet network to the new TaitNet network. They were provided with a robust, reliable and supported communications system that will satisfy their needs for years to come.
This positioning paper will provide a summarized comparison of the current digital technologies outlining the advantages and disadvantages for each of them. The technologies compared are DMR, dPMR, TETRA, TETRAPOL, P25, NXDN and Opensky.