Government Wireless Network | Queensland, Australia
Government Wireless Network
The Government Wireless Network (GWN) provides public safety agencies with a fully integrated, secure digital radio communications network for mission-critical voice, radio and data communications across the greater Brisbane and South East Queensland region in Queensland, Australia.
Operating in the 400MHz Harmonised Government Spectrum – specifically the 420-430MHz frequency band (Band 5), the network brings agencies onto the same radio communications platform to assist in improving the efficiency and effectiveness of frontline operations.
Queensland is adopting Project 25 (P25) Phase 2 technology for the GWN. Utilising P25 Phase 2 technology, the network provides the highest levels of radio communications availability, reliability, security and clarity via a fully fault-tolerant architecture.
The Queensland Government, Telstra Corporation Limited and Motorola Solutions Australia have formed a successful partnership to design and deliver a secure, fully integrated government radio communications network.
Full implementation of the GWN and operational transition of Queensland’s police, fire and ambulance services will be completed by June 2016. When complete, the network will service more than 17,500 frontline police and emergency services personnel in South East Queensland.
The Queensland Department of Science, Information Technology and Innovation is delivering the GWN in partnership with Queensland Police Service, Queensland Fire and Emergency Services and Queensland Ambulance Service to ensure the solution meets operational requirements and fully integrates with other dispatch systems.
Telstra Corporation Limited, with its public safety strategic solutions supplier Motorola Solutions Australia, is responsible for the design, build, financing, operation and maintenance of the GWN under a 15-year managed service agreement with the Queensland Government.
Mingara Australasia is the Queensland Government technical advisor for the GWN and their extensive experience in specifying, planning and delivering similar radio communications networks in other Australian and international jurisdictions has been a major contributor to the success of the GWN.
With a total contract value of $515 million, the GWN is one of the largest public sector ICT ‘as-a-service’ arrangements currently being delivered in Australia.
GWN for the G20
The Brisbane G20 Leaders’ Summit held in November 2014 was the largest peacetime security operation ever held in Australia. The network played a vital role in the G20 by maximising public safety agency response capability and providing secure and interoperable mobile radio communications.
The GWN set a new Australian benchmark in inter-agency interoperability, encryption and frontline officer safety. About 9,750 Queensland police, fire and ambulance personnel and 500 national and international security specialists relied on the GWN wireless capability to ensure the safety of 20 world leaders, 43 international diplomats, 4,000 delegates and 3,000 domestic and international media, as well as the general public and issue-motivated protest groups.
South East Queensland implementation
The South East Queensland implementation of the GWN is the largest single deployment of Project 25 Phase 2 technology in the world, with 179 radio base station sites built and commissioned.
The GWN provides 99% coverage of the South East Queensland population across an area of 30,000 square kilometres stretching from Tweed Heads in the south, Oakey in the west and Gympie in the north. The extensive coverage of the GWN provides public safety agencies with vastly improved radio communications reach into the community.
The GWN is being delivered in stages with full implementation of the network to be completed by June 2016. A staged approach means implementation is more manageable for public safety agencies, particularly from a training and organisational change perspective.
A close and productive relationship between the Queensland Government, Telstra and Motorola, and public safety agencies has allowed for the seamless flow of deliverables and interdependencies. As a result, operational transition to the GWN in stages 1 and 2 has been a resounding success.
For a project of this size, scale, complexity and importance, highly effective planning, good operational readiness and an integrated approach have been key factors of its success.
ISSI and CSSI interface
The GWN has been equipped and licenced with a range of P25 features and functionality, however two key features have been provided to facilitate interconnection to external P25 systems and consoles. These are the ISSI and CSSI interfaces. As the CSSI feature set is predominantly a subset of the ISSI, GWN testing of the ISSI interface was also seen as satisfying the CSSI testing requirement.
The GWN is provided with an off-line facility or ‘sand pit’ which fully replicates the production system and hence non-disruptive ISSI interface testing with third party P25 systems was able to be tested. This testing was successful, however the process proved invaluable as it highlighted a large range of network configuration settings, terminal ID requirements and P25 feature sets that need to be known and set up correctly before ISSI links can be permitted between two or more P25 production network. These lessons learned are invaluable and can be used to assist mitigating any connectivity risks into the future.
The network and contract has been designed to be scalable to allow for the expansion of GWN coverage and capacity to other locations in Queensland and to other users.
There is potential to expand the GWN to allow other government agencies, such as the State Emergency Service, and local government to use it. However, at this stage, the government has only committed to deliver the network for Queensland’s public safety agencies operating in South East Queensland.
A copy of this Article can be downloaded using the link below:
P25 Latest Standards Update from January TIA Meetings
The Project 25 Technology Interest group is releasing a P25 Standards Update report from the most recent TIA TR-8 meetings held in late January in San Diego California
This report is authored by Andy Davis the Chairman of TIA TR-8 The report highlights TR-8 accomplishments and work in progress for 2016. The document will be updated after every TR-8 face to face meeting occurring in 2016. The filename reflects the date of the latest update. After the first 2016 version, each update will use blue font to indicate the updates.
NEW Whitepaper: Is Project 25 Public Safety Grade?
Question: Is Project 25 “Public Safety Grade”?
The Answer: Yes!!
In simple terms, Public Safety Grade (PSG) equipment, systems or networks are those that provide the communication capabilities required by the operators and users of the equipment with availability and reliability exceeding that typically provided by commercial communication equipment, systems and networks. Project 25 in many ways establishes the foundation for implementing Public Safety Grade systems and equipment, and therefore we can say YES to the question “Is Project 25 Public Safety Grade?” The full discussion in this document provides comprehensive support for that answer.
In response to the release of the National Public Safety Telecommunications Council paper titled: “Defining Public Safety Grade Systems and Facilities”, The Project 25 Technology Interest Group (PTIG) was approached with questions such as:
“Is Project 25 Public Safety Grade?” and
“What does “Public Safety Grade” mean in 100 words or less?”
The resulting discussions among the manufacturers, technologists and Public Safety Communication Agency user representatives within the Project 25 Technology Interest Group revealed that coming up with a single and concise answer, that everyone will accept, is a difficult task. As an aid to these types of discussions, this whitepaper highlights aspects of the Project 25 suite of standards that contribute to creating Public Safety Grade communications equipment, systems and networks.
By defining “Public Safety” as; the collection of Federal, State, Local and Tribal agencies tasked with keeping the public safe, it becomes apparent that the communication needs of these people are diverse and can be unique from the communication needs of the general public. In fact, depending on the respective missions and operating environments, the communication needs of one Public Safety agency can be quite different than the needs of another Public Safety agency.
A Project 25 Console Sub-System Interface (CSSI) Application Logs Over 5 Million Hours World-wide
The Project 25 Technology Interest Group recognizes a significant milestone in the deployment and acceptance for the new P25 Console Sub-System Interface (CSSI). Zetron’s Acom integrated dispatch system products utilizing the TIA Project 25 (P25) CSSI have logged more than 5 million hours of successful operation at customer sites throughout North and South America and Australia. This clearly shows the fast acceptance and continued growth for the relatively new P25 CSSI console interface standard. The Acom product can link both Project 25 Phase 1 and Project 25 Phase 2 systems from a variety of P25 infrastructure manufacturers including:
Motorola (Phase I and II)
Harris (Phase I and II)
“Exceeding 5 million hours of successful CSSI operation is yet another demonstration of our ongoing commitment to supporting P25 Standards and technology” said Zetron President and CEO, Ellen O’Hara. “It also underscores our continuing dedication to delivering solutions that provide cross-system compatibility and offer a wide range of equipment choices in Project 25 Systems”
Additional information can be found by following the link below:
New P25 Paging Solution to Improve Communications for First Responders in Michigan
By: Brad Stoddard
State of Michigan Department of Technology, Management, and Budget,Lansing MI
A new public safety paging technology solution that will allow emergency personnel across Michigan to use a single system for both two-way radio and paging is now available. The P25 paging capability – the first of its kind – will operate on Michigan’s Public Safety Communications System.
Currently, MPSCS subscribers may need two separate systems to dispatch emergency crews, one for the radios they use at the scene of an incident and another for the pagers that summon emergency responders. This new technology will provide both functions in one single system. Additionally, the new solution will notify first responders if they are out of communication range, a confirmation the current method does not provide.
“In an emergency, every second is critical to life-saving activity,” said Brad Stoddard, MPSCS director. “The efficiency created by combining radio and paging into one system will get emergency responders to an accident scene faster, which will save lives.”
The MPSCS is one of the largest single public safety communications system in North America, providing interoperable voice and data communications to 1,493 local, state, federal, tribal and private public safety agencies. MPSCS has strategically partnered with Unication, a worldwide leader in designing and manufacturing of critical messaging technology, to bring this state of the art P25 paging solution to fruition. “This partnership has allowed us to bring a paging solution, that has been missing from the P25 landscape for many years, first to the citizens of Michigan and then to the global P25 marketplace.” said Kirk Alland, Vice President and General Manager of Unication USA.
The MPSCS has already worked with state, local and private agencies to test the new paging solution.
The MPSCS, a part of the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget, has received both national and international recognition as the standard for large and multiple partner land mobile radio systems. The system spans nearly 60,000 square miles and includes 246 tower sites with more than 60 integrated local and state public safety dispatch centers and a network communications center that serves more than 74,000 radios.