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Thursday, November 21, 2013

LTE: The Technology Driver for Future Public Safety Communications

Wireless communications technologies play an essential role to support the Public Protection and Disaster Relief (PPDR) operational needs. The current Private/Professional Mobile Radio (PMR) technologies used for PPDR communications offer a rich set of voice-centric services but have very limited data transmission capabilities, which are unable to handle the increasing PPDR community demand for a wider range of data-centric services.

Though some efforts have been devoted to upgrade PMR technologies with better data transfer capabilities, the progression towards an enhanced mobile broadband PMR standardized solution still lags behind the achievements made in the commercial wireless industry, which recently culminated in Long- Term Evolution (LTE) technology. Because of this contrasting progress, the adoption of commercial mainstream LTE technology to satisfy the PPDR community’s data communication needs is gaining momentum and offers significant opportunities to create and exploit the synergies between the commercial and PPDR domains, which have remained almost entirely separate to date.

This article proposes a solution framework for the provision of PPDR services that considers the involvement of both dedicated and commercial LTE-based mobile networks and allows the PPDR users to have a tight control of the service provisioning and network resources.

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