Connecting radios all over the world

Airband Radio Systems

Airports are a perfect environment for SoftRadio.

Busy, busy, busy! All around an airport you have people and vehicles that need to communicate. With SoftRadio your operators can communicate with all types of radio systems including the air band radio to the planes.

There are virtually no limits to what you connect into the SoftRadio system. Ground radio, Airband radio, Intercom, Phones etc.

Into this area are also the unmanned flying objects entering.

Mimer SoftRadio

SAS - Scandinavian Airline Systems

SoftRadio at SAS

Example from Scandinavian Airline Systems

The largest installation of Mimer SoftRadio is used by SAS. They have connected all Scandinavian airports to a dispatch center in Frösundavik, Stockholm. The main connection is their own WAN system, but they also use public Internet for remote locations.
At each airport there is a ground radio system, at many airports old analogue channels in VHF or UHF and in the larger airports it is Tetra. At most airports there is also one or more airband radios. This means that the dispatchers can talk both to ground personnel and to approaching airplanes through the same user interface.

All audio in the system is also recorded through Mimer VoiceLog servers.
For backup reasons there is also an extra standby dispatch central at Arlanda Airport, that can be operational at short notice.
In total the system has about 50 operators and 60 radios spread out over Scandinavia.

Pilot add-on with PoC functionality

To make the turn around faster at the airport gates, SAS connects the pilots into the ground radio call that is ongoing around the airplane at the gate. However the pilots doesn´t use a standard two way radio for this, it would be to complicated since every airport has its own radio system. The pilots instead uses their smart phones and an application that connects them to the two way radio call. This is done with Mimer equipment and in cooperation with a company called GroupTalk. You can read more here.

BIAL-The international Airport in Bangalore India

SoftRadio at BIAL Airport

Example from BIAL in India.

For their new airport wing in BIAL they choose to install a Mimer SoftRadio system in their main control center.
The system has 11 operators working with 8 airband radios and 10 trunked Tetra radios. It has also a supervising system that will report any errors to the service team. The system has been operational since 2013 and was expanded during 2017.
Read more on the supervising system here.
The system was sold and set up in cooperation with our systems partner Testadvance from Melbourne.

More Airport possibilities

SoftRadio Airport example

Dispatchers using both airband and local radios.

Three airport radios remoted from one common position

Night time watch from one common dispatch site.

Mix of radio types

At large airports there are both airband radio channels and also ground radio channels in use. With the use of SoftRadio the dispatchers can handle all types of radio from the same software GUI and the same audio accessories.
The dispatchers can also cross patch the different radio types, allowing the planes to talk to ground personnel that do not have the airband radio.

Common dispatcher - Night watch

In the example to the left, the three airports each have their local small system with one radio and one dispatch PC. The three systems are also remote controlled from one common dispatch site.
This set up can be very useful for example when there is low traffic at night time, but you still need to monitor what is happening at the remote airport. One common dispatcher can then handle all three airports.
The system can be expanded with more airports, dispatchers and also other types of radios.

Virtual Control Head, Icom IC-A120

Among the radios that are supported by Mimer SoftRadio with channel change and more, you now also find the airband radio Icom IC-A120.

Virtual Control Head, Jotron Airband Radio

Also the Jotron TR7750 Airband radio is supported with a Virtual Control Head.

Virtual Control Head, MTM5400

And you can also connect other types of radios such as Tetra, DMR or old analogue.

We get more and more requests for light weight solutions. Systems that might be onboard an unmanned aircraft (drone).
Here are setups with a Yeasu portable and with an Icom portable airband radio.

Examples of Airports and Airlines using SoftRadio
  • Arlanda
  • Kastrup
  • Gardermoen
  • Landvetter
  • Kallax
  • Bial
  • Helsinki
  • Dublin
  • Schiphol
  • Heathrow
  • Stansted
  • AirAsia
  • Tokyo Airport
  • Antigua and Barbuda

Apart from airports and airlines there are also many installations on ships and offshore on oil rigs and wind power farms etc.

Using SoftRadio with UAV´s

Flying between hospitals in a city

Both in Belgium and in Norway, SoftRadio has been involved in tests with UAV´s that fly between hospitals. They carry tests, blood etc. much faster than a city transport with car can be made.

In order to clear that the air is free for flying, the drone pilot needs to talk to the tower at the nearest airport. When they do so, using a radio, all other aircraft that are close by also gets the same message.

In the first tests the airband radio have been left on the ground connected over the Internet to the pilot, so that he can be “anywhere”. In a later stage the radio might instead be onboard the drone, in the same way as unmanned ships have radios onboard.

Drone from Senseloop in Oslo

Customer case with the UK Armed Forces

47th Regiment Royal Artillery operates the Watchkeeper Remote Piloted Air System (RPAS), providing the British Army with Tactical Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance (ISTAR).  The Watchkeeper RPAS is able to fly for 14 Hours and carries an Electro Optical / Infra Red and Radar Payload. The system is normally flown from MOD Boscombe Down with fully functional Air Traffic Control (ATC) and airfield facilities.

As part of a 90 Day Exercise designed to challenge, develop and test their Tactics, Training and Procedures, the Regiment has deployed to Keevil Airfield in Wiltshire which has no ATC or airfield facilities. Keevil Airfield is based in a valley north of Salisbury Plain Training Area (SPTA)  and due to its lower elevation, there is no line of sight with Boscombe Down ATC 30 km away. From Keevil Airfield, the Watchkeeper RPAS is flown into SPTA where it supports British Army training on sorties lasting 6 – 8 hours, whilst remaining in constant communications with Boscombe Down ATC.

In order to improve safety by adding another method of communicating with Boscombe Down ATC, 47th Regiment Royal Artillery has employed the MIMER SoftLine system from Brabourne to create a Radio over Internet Protocol (RoIP) repeater to bridge the high ground in between Keevil and Boscombe Down.

The system is connected to an ICOM IC-120E on either end, with the link between the 2 radios being connected through the SoftLine and internet. This allows the Watchkeeper Pilots to operate using their internal radios to communicate with Boscombe ATC without direct line of sight which adds yet another layer of safety to their Operations from Keevil Airfield.

The versatility and ease of operation of the Mimer System will allow 47th Regiment  to employ this equipment on future deployments, when operating in remote areas of the world supporting our Troops.

Set up in ccoperation with Brabourne Communications in the UK.

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