Pulse

By GCN Staff

Blog archive
An MCU could be mounted in this kind of vehicle

FirstNet foresees in-vehicle units for remote comm

One of the challenges for FirstNet, the nationwide LTE public safety broadband network, will be providing coverage for responders in remote locations or otherwise out of range of terrestrial coverage.

Current alternatives include using balloons or drones to construct an aerial communications architecture and portable cellular networks that connect responders to FirstNet.

One of the latest concepts for coverage extension, however, is the Mobile Communications Unit (MCU), a satellite-based communications system that could be installed in responder vehicles to give responders wireless capabilities when they are outside of terrestrial network coverage.

According to a blog post by the FirstNet Office of the Chief Technology Officer, the MCU could automatically act like a remote base station to other users, coordinating communications if the size of the incident expands or if additional first responders are needed.

The MCU could automatically switch from the terrestrial network modem to a satellite modem and  use in-vehicle routers and rugged antennas that could withstand extreme environmental conditions. New satellite technologies can improve some of the performance, physical installation, and cost of including a satellite option, FirstNet said.  

While MCU is still a concept, FirstNet is researching deployable platforms and working to ensure that the MCU is prioritized as appropriate to support commercial availability of this critical platform.

Posted by GCN Staff on Jul 27, 2015 at 11:14 AM


Featured

  • Telecommunications
    Stock photo ID: 658810513 By asharkyu

    GSA extends EIS deadline to 2023

    Agencies are getting up to three more years on existing telecom contracts before having to shift to the $50 billion Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions vehicle.

  • Workforce
    Shutterstock image ID: 569172169 By Zenzen

    OMB looks to retrain feds to fill cyber needs

    The federal government is taking steps to fill high-demand, skills-gap positions in tech by retraining employees already working within agencies without a cyber or IT background.

  • Acquisition
    GSA Headquarters (Photo by Rena Schild/Shutterstock)

    GSA to consolidate multiple award schedules

    The General Services Administration plans to consolidate dozens of its buying schedules across product areas including IT and services to reduce duplication.

Stay Connected

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.