Communication in today’s mines no longer consists of just two-way radio communication between staff at ground level but incorporates underground internet capabilities, emergency evacuation technology, automation control and high speed data transfer. It has literally become the backbone of an efficiently run mining operation.
Much of the developments in communication in mines has centered around safety improvement and remote monitoring and control of operations. Today there are systems that can track and monitor movement of mine workers underground and enable a personalized distress signal to be transmitted should the worker be incapacitated for any reason, giving his name and location. Major innovations can also be found in the provision of communication underground to enable uninterrupted communication between trapped miners and rescue teams improving changes of successful rescue operations. One of these innovations is in the use of leaky-feeder systems, which provide radio frequency communication, and are increasingly carrying data, telemetry, tracking and video information.
Most common challenges mining companies face is the delivery of communications and logistics to their remote and mobile teams. However, satellite technology offers solution with fixed and mobile high-speed internet, voice, video and data for end-to-end communication in and around mine sites. They are self-contained quick deploy communication units that can be towed anywhere, establishing instant broadband connectivity within minutes.
Mining companies have not been left behind when it comes to social media or other online platforms as a mode of communication to avoid criticism, scrutiny and protest by opposition groups. This communication method is a superb, cost efficient vehicle for mining opponents to convey their message and set the parameters of a story.
As we take a look at players in this sector, what is apparent is that future developments in the industry is anticipated to focus on technologies that improve safety and productivity, reduce costs, and provide management tools that contribute towards keeping mines financially viable.
Minetec Pty Ltd
Minetec Pty Ltd, (Perth, Western Australia) comprehensive suite of communications products is aimed at improving safety and productivity in underground and surface mining operations. Minetec’s new core product lines include SMARTS™ mine management and control (MMC); SafeDetect™ collision avoidance and proximity detection; Trax+Tags™ II Real-Time Locating System (RTLS) for vehicle and personnel position reporting and tracking; and ELF II (Ethernet-over-Leaky Feeder) infrastructure.
The Minetec SMARTS™ mine management and control (MMC) system provides a combination of applications to plan the day-to-day task allocation of resources in the mine, allowing mine managers to focus on driving efficiency, safety, cost and quality. The Minetec ELF™ II (Ethernet-over-Leaky Feeder), a software-defined communications infrastructure, provides high-speed data throughput and capacity for underground mining communications management and operations.
Minetec’s Safe Detect™ Proximity Awareness System allows MMP/FSM operators to detect the presence of LV/SDV early, well before any vehicle-to-vehicle interaction occurs, even when clear line-of-sight is not possible.
A Real-Time Locating System (RTLS), Trax+Tags™ utilizes a number of technologies to follow personnel and assets as they move through an underground mine to enhance safety, increase production and improve efficiency.
Mr. Sheppard, executive general manager, Minetec said. “The Minetec product lines have been developed from technology that is rapidly becoming a standard in mining operations worldwide and has been designed with input from our numerous customers and partners in underground and surface mining. By integrating SMARTS™ with the ELF™ communications network, SafeDetect ™ and the Trax+Tags™ II tracking system, Minetec provides a comprehensive, enterprise-wide solution for underground mining operations.”
Gateway Communications, Inc
Since 1993, Gateway Communications, Inc. has been providing clients around the world with telemetry solutions. Gateway designs, manufactures and integrates wireless end-to-end solutions that allow its clients to locate, monitor, sensor and control their remote assets.
The unique feature of the MiTAS solution is to improve employee safety, manage losses, avert downtime and reduce wear and tear on equipment due to the unfortunate loss of a protective cap or tooth on an open pit mining shovel. Gateway has developed MiTAS, which is a locating technology using an embedded radio frequency identification (RFID) system that monitors the near proximity of the protective caps placed over each of the bucket’s teeth. When MiTAS determines there is a cap or tooth missing, it immediately alerts the shovel operator to take the appropriate action.
According to Gateways communication Inc President Jon F Rowley their products are not available in Africa but they are in the process of searching for distributors across Africa.
Using proximity locating technology in Gateway’s SecurTag™ active RFID system, the SecurTag™ Reader listens for the presence of SecurTag™ Tags that are placed inside each cap. These unlicensed RFID transmitters are preconfigured to chirp their identification number once every 15 to 30 seconds.
Once a cap become detached from the bucket and the Tag’s transmissions are no longer in signal range of the Reader, the MiTAS then warns the operator with a flashing light and optional buzzer. The SecurTag™ uses algorithms and filters when determining if a cap is actually missing to prevent false alerts due to temporary lost signal that can occur when the bucket is buried in dirt.
DrayTek Corp was the first company to design a USB ISDN TA (terminal adapter) for Windows 98 and Mac OS in 1998. The isdnVigor128 was hence selected by Apple to be recommended for KPN to sell together with Apple bondi blue iMac from Oct. 1998 to allow users be able to use ISDN connection.
Later, the implementation of the Enterprise-level VPN on SOHO router introduced DrayTek to the new business segment that allowed tele-workers and remote offices of multi-national companies to easily have a secure VPN router to access their main offices where Cisco, Checkpoint, Juniper, Nokia, Nortel, Sonicwall, Watchguard, and other famous VPN servers were installed. DrayTek Corp. endeavored to run field testing with these big brothers of VPN servers to realize best interoperability.
At present, DrayTek’s solutions, range from central management ACS (auto-configuration server), enterprise-level firewalls, mission-critical bandwidth management and comprehensive VPN facilities, triple play routers to IPv6 implementation. They provide professionals and SMB with reliable access.
DrayTek Corp has established a global distribution through authorization of distributorship in the world. DrayTek Corp. is established in HsinChu, Taiwan. DrayTek Corp. has two branch offices one is in China while the other is in Germany.
DrayTek’s networking solutions/products are available in Africa and can be purchased from themthrough their contracted and local distribution partners. The fast pace of ICT development and multi-broadband trends in Africa has resulted in the tremendous demand for Internet Access hence fiber deployment, mobile broadband, BYOD, Cloud computing are the most popular developments.
WZRDnet is a low-power wireless mesh network that provides voice and data communications without existing infrastructure (i.e. no leaky feeder coax or cell towers required).WZRDnet is composed of lightweight handsets, which operate both as user interface devices and repeaters in the mesh network. If a destination is not in line-of-sight, a handset will automatically route communications through other handsets or stand alone repeaters. WZRDnet can operate as an isolated, standalone network or it can access Wide Area Networks via the WZRDnet Gateway to provide seamless interoperability. Since the WZRDnet is based on sensor network technology, sensors (e.g., temperature, motion, etc.) can be incorporated into the network for real time monitoring of environmental and security conditions.
WZRDnet is a mesh network designed to operate in demanding environments where supporting infrastructure does not exist. These characteristics make WZRDnet an ideal candidate for mining communications. When compared to leaky feeder coax systems, WZRDnet is shown to have clearly superior benefits. By eliminating the need for infrastructure WZRDnet eliminates the high costs and complexities associated with installation. With WZRDnet coverage can be increased by mounting another repeater on a wall.
Additionally, WZRDnet is a self-healing mesh network where broken paths are automatically rerouted unlike leaky feeder coax where a break would cut off an entire section of the mine. Finally, WZRDnet repeaters are simple to remove meaning elements of the network have a useful life even beyond that of the mine. For instance, if a mine were to be decommissioned, its network could be easily reinstalled in another mine to save money.
Eric Sharret Vice President, Business Development says that in the near future, wireless communications will replace leaky feeder coax communications in mining applications.
The PBE Group
The PBE Group, founded over 40 years ago, is a global electronic engineering and manufacturing company serving the mining, tunneling and contract manufacturing industries. The company provides safety, communications, monitoring and control systems to mines around the world. With offices in 7 countries and strong, strategic partners in over 30 other countries, PBE is the only true single source integrated solution for mine safety and productivity systems that is able to provide timely service and engineering support globally. The solutions have been deployed in over 600 mines in 70 countries.
PBE’s products and systems are sophisticated and reliable, with a demonstrated track record of ensuring safer and more productive mines.With extensive experience in all types of underground environments from tunneling and coal mining, to hard rock mining, PBE have long recognized that safety and productivity depend on reliable two-way communications.
While some employees can communicate using traditional, stationary equipment via fixed infrastructure, mobile equipment and personnel require a ‘wireless’ solution for monitoring, control and communications purposes making the work place much more efficient. Leaky feeder two-way radio communications continue to be the most cost effective technology even decades after its original inception, due not only to the reliability of the components and equipment required but continuing to provide superior voice quality over digitized signals.
As a single source supplier, the products are controlled from an advanced mine monitoring software, MineBoss™ 2.0. This provides a single platform for the monitoring, diagnostics and reporting of not only the complete PBE product range but other 3rd party devices.
The product range is focused around a communications backbone that can include a combination of Fibre, leaky feeder and Wi-Fi. These not only provide a reliable and robust underground voice communications network, but also the transportation of data from the other applications PBE manufactures including environmental monitoring, personnel and equipment tagging and tracking, conveyor belt monitoring, dust and fire suppression to name but a few.
PBE’s latest product offering is PAS, a Collision Avoidance and Proximity Detection solution that is designed to meet all above ground and underground requirements for heavy vehicles, light vehicles, assets and personnel. Using a combination of RFID, Electromagnetic, Radar and GPS, PAS is the most advanced and accurate solution available, to meet new regulatory requirements as well as improve safety.
James Andrews, Sales Director – Africa, says that when purchasing a mine communications system one should consider the total cost of ownership. He further says that the value of PBE is being able to offer the complete solution and provide a single platform to manage your mine. Working with the client we can advise on the best way to increase their productivity and make the mine as safe as possible.
Mine Site Technologies (MST)
Mine Site Technologies (MST) provides communications networks and operational optimisation solutions which assist organisations in the mining, resources and industrial sectors to optimally manage their core business operations.
Established almost 25 years ago and with global reach across six continents, the company specialises in the design, deployment and support of critical technologies for communications, automation-enablement, production optimisation, vehicle and personnel tracking, and safety in hazardous underground and surface environments. A pioneering force within the mining industry, its solutions are currently in use at over 500 mine sites worldwide.
MST deployed the first commercially available PED (Personal Emergency Device) using TTE (Through the Earth) technology. Since that time, MST has developed and expanded its suite of communications technologies which range from VDV Leaky Feeder Radio Systems to the newest Wi-Fi (IP) based Impact “One Network” Digital System. It also includes the MST Integrated Communications Cap Lamp (ICCL) system. An ICCL provides every miner working underground with a complete single system solution for light generation, personnel tracking, and the receiving of emergency communications and alerts.
MST’s integrated communications technology infrastructure and automation-enablement platform allows insight into operational metrics which can be used to drive higher asset and resource utilisation, improved processes and enhanced safety. Customers around the world trust MST solutions to help optimize output, minimize cost and reduce risk, resulting in a compelling ROI on their technology investments.
Jurie van Rensburg, MST’s regional manager for Africa, says that their products are designed specifically for mines and therefore perfectly suited to the harsh conditions in the African environment, ensuring that low levels of maintenance are required. He concludes by saying that Africa is a key market for their organisation and MST’s products are increasingly in demand because of their proven ability to improve productivity and safety.
Micromine, a leading provider of software solutions to the exploration and mining sector, has responded to the growing need for mine operations to reduce costs and improve efficiencies through the release of Pitram Production Reporting Service, a managed service and an extension of its industry leading mine operations system. Pitram is an essential and proven system for the management and process improvement of mine operations. Pitram can be used to record, communicate, manage and process mine site data related to equipment, personnel, locations and materials.
It is ideal for small to medium size underground and open pit operations that want to introduce Pitram’s advanced communication and reporting capabilities without incurring the expense of installing the entire solution and investing in the resources to manage it.
The service reduces administration costs and improves efficiencies as multiple and unreliable data sources are replaced by one electronic data depository. All data related to mine events and activities is entered into Pitram by site personnel to generate and access key reports, including production reports, grade control reports and stockpile management reports. Through the provision of accurate and timely reports, and the effective communication of current and historical mine site data, management are better positioned to make informed decisions and undertake effective analysis allowing reduced costs and increased productivity.
Craig Peek, MICROMINE Africa Sales Manager, says that “Many operations are looking to invest in software that is intuitive and easy to use. MICROMINE’s software solutions meet both criteria, and are known to increase user productivity and as a consequence reduce costs. The Paladin case study attached addresses how Micromine has assisted the company to introduce significant efficiencies”.
Micromine case studies can be viewed on http://www.micromine.com/solutions/case-studies
PLiiNC Inc is an organization staffed with industry experts with 85 years of combined experience in satellite communications and global technology. From the most advanced technologies in satellite communications their team is on it. Their implementation strategy is designed to make it easy to deploy a satellite communications solution.
PLiiNC Inc products are State-of-the-Art in mobile VSAT technology and Wi-Fi application servers and their companys business model capitalizes on the expansion of market growth of mobile VSAT communications to the user who has a requirement for mobile satellite capacity anywhere on earth. Their COTM products pave the way for the broadcast professionals and emergency first responders to pack up and go to make their task more effective and less time consuming regardless of the job.
According to PLiiNC Inc’sPresident Paul Pazzaglini currently their products are available in Africa and can be purchased from them directly or through their designated agents available in Africa. Paul also added that their products are unique in that their COTM for land mobile has no cellular service and Fixed Mobile for stationary sites that move.
Their AutoGenSat mobile command centers can be customized to fit your needs. You may already have a fleet of vehicles and only need them to integrate the mobile communications system. They offer a site survey to inspect your fleet and provide a proposal to retrofit according to your requirements. PLIINC was hired to install AutoGenSat technology in the nationwide fleet for the US Postal Inspection Service in 2005 and 2006
New Era Systems, Inc.
New Era Systems Inc, headquartered in Pompano Beach, Florida, USA has provided secure broadcast satellite systems and service for mining operations around the world since 2000. They help meet the communications needs of mining company sites in Africa and the Mideast for exploration-mobile and transportable communications for mine exploration teams, remote site to head-office communications, site-wide wireless connectivity to the outside world, security and monitoring centralized remote data.
Mine sites can be far beyond the reach of mobile phones and terrestrial telecoms. Lack of access to timely data analysis, expert advice, and decision-making can create hardships and increased expenses for a mining operation. Imagine the potential improvements in control, reporting, and operational efficiency when your remotest mining operation is live and securely online with your central scientific, analytical and corporate network functions.
Using their satellite-based services and equipment, a company can bring cost-effective, secure, high-bandwidth and real-time communications to help increase the production efficiency and control of a mining operation. Enable critical applications such as technical data, monitoring of mine site security, access control, CCTV surveillance, and asset tracking and management all from thousands of miles away. Remotely monitor and control activities at multiple mine sites across all of Africa through a single network.
Phil Thomas from New Era Systems, Inc says that when purchasing a mine communication system a client should consider the track record rather than cost. He further says that although fiber continues to expand throughout Africa the remote location of mining and exploration sites means satellite will always be a necessary part of the communications solution.
Northern Light Technologies
They are a global underground communication innovator with over 25 years of experience in the mining and tunneling industry. Their focus is simply to develop and deploy the most current and adaptive technologies to make mines safer and more efficient. They design manufacture and deploy fully engineered network hardware, peripherals and software with specific applications geared to mining and tunneling. As Africa requires some intrinsically safe equipment in a number of their mines, the NLT product range is very suitable. NLT focuses on Intrinsic Safety which makes them suitable for more applications. NTL are the first company to introduce Wi-Fi networks to underground coal mines.
More and more, mines are beginning to recognize the role that superior networking and communication systems can play in mine safety and efficiency. The provider of these solutions must truly understand the nuances of mining so they bring both reliable and innovative products to their customers that immediately generate value.
Tim Haight from NLT says that their people are not only experts in Wi-Fi and other types of communications mediums but are also network engineers with experience and knowledge in the outside world as well as underground mines. This means they are very well suited to bring these two worlds together.
The Norphonic Heavy Duty VoIP telephone is built to withstand extreme temperatures, humid and dirty environments. It is approved for use in emergency and industrial areas, with an overall weather resistance up to IP65. The unit is manufactured in a durable aluminum casing, resistant to corrosion, rust and condensation. The hook switch has no moving parts, making the telephone ideal for use in environments exposed to high levels of dust or grime and comes complete with an 80 dB ringer as standard.
The telephone can be maintained and upgraded from a remote location, thereby slashing maintenance costs associated with conventional telephone systems. A self-monitoring and fault check function is also included, ensuring maximum uptime and further saving maintenance costs.
When selecting mining telephones, Norphonic Sales and Marketing Director Helge Rognstad offer the following three recommendations: “First, ensure that the telephone and/or PBX are based on open SIP standards. This will make your system easier to upgrade or replace in the future, if operational demands require it. Secondly, always ask for certificates when it comes to Ingress Protection (IP grade) to ensure that the telephone will handle your mining environment. Finally, ensure that your telephone uses Modbus TCP or SNMP so that the status of the telephone can be read using industry standard protocols”.
Global Telesat Communications Ltd (GTC)
GTC is a family run business in the UK with over 22 years combined experience in the satellite communications industry. They offer expert advice, competitive prices and next day delivery. They provide equipment and airtime for use on all the major satellite networks including Globalstar, Inmarsat, Iridium and Thuraya and have a rental service for customers requiring equipment on a short-term basis.
GTC also offers an online tracking portal, GTCTrack, where a range of more than 70 different tracking devices are currently compatible. These include Apple iPhone, Blackberry, Globalstar SmartOne, Inmarsat IsatPhone, Iridium Extreme and most other popular GSM and satellite based tracking products. These devices determine their location by triangulating a position using GPS and then transmit this information via GSM, Satellite, or VHF to a central server for processing. The information transmitted from the device is then available to view through GTCTrack.
Many of their products and services offer 100 percent global coverage thereby allowing users in remote locations to make phone calls, connect to the internet and track assets or personnel anywhere in the world.
James Phipps from GTC says that as newer products are released they are finding them more user friendly along with better voice quality and connection times especially on the Globalstar network as they are the only company to have a second generation constellation in orbit at present. He concludes and says that they sell directly to companies and individuals across Africa.
They are a leading turnkey solutions provider of mission critical information technology and communications solutions to the global Oil and Gas industry. Covering Upstream to Downstream operations, Airacom assists organisations in the adoption of intrinsically safe mobile technology to gain a strategic business advantage.
Based in the UK, they are known for improving productivity by speeding up work processes and on-site data capture, in addition to streamlining sales and supply chain management, compliance, inspection monitoring and equipment maintenance procedures.
Enabling tools that link business processes and provide visibility into operational data are consistently cited as critical to attaining excellence. The world’s oil and gas organizations leverage best in class mobility tools from Airacom to enable substantial improvements across the enterprise.
Airacom’s underlying philosophy is health and safety, to provide the best possible hazardous area mobility solutions, services and value for money in order to drive improvements in employee and company inefficiencies. The time to mobilize your workforce and improve the communications and data flow within your organisation via enterprise mobility is now.
Colin Croxford, the Sales Director of Airacom says that one of the challenges faced by oil and gas organisations is to identify where the deployment of mobile solutions will bring the largest payoffs. Using the Syclo solution in partnership with independent SAP Gold Partner ‘Absoft’, Airacom and Absoft deliver leading SAP solutions and mobility services to the upstream oil and gas industry throughout EMEA and Norwegian Continental Shelf region since 1991. Colin goes on to say that they have been working extensively with their customers of all sizes to align SAP solutions with oil and gas business processes to help customers achieve maximum return on investment. He concludes and says that their focus is within the EMEA region and is now actively looking for African agents.
They are among the leading wireless network service providers. They provide a complete end-to-end service based on best-of-breed solutions and tailor networks to their customer’s specific business requirements and budgets. Working closely with their sister companies in the Datasat Group, based in the UK they deliver a range of communications and content services not available from any other service provider.
The development of wireless technology has allowed mining operations to become increasingly connected. No matter how remote and challenging the mine site is, a wireless network solution from Datasat Technologies can cost-effectively deliver the access to real-time data necessary to increase operational effectiveness, productivity and safety.
Their wireless networking technology has been specifically designed for continuous outdoor operations within extremely challenging remote environments. With up to four RF routers in a single ruggedized access device, they create high bandwidth, low latency, robust and reliable wireless networks that deliver long-range coverage within even the harshest environments.
Key to the Datasat solution is intelligent IP-layer traffic management that allows a number of sub-networks to operate securely and independently over a single wireless network infrastructure. It can be installed quickly and extended or re-deployed as required. Detailed heat maps provided by the Datasat bespoke planning service followed by professional installation and efficient Network Monitoring Service enable a simple yet effective solution deployment.
Datasat Technologies delivered a flexible WiFi based backhaul network in one of mining organizations in Ghana, Africa that could support the company’s new Access Control system.
Ciaran Doran, Group CEO says that Datasat Technologies provides a range of communications for the mining sector throughout Africa based on its own unique range of Wi-Fi systems.
TEMIX Communication Engineering Srl
Temix is an Italian Company in the telecommunications industry, supplying communications technology for Satellite, Wireless Networks and ICT infrastructure with its own technical, engineering and support expertise. Although they are continually expanding they are determined to maintain the human approach. Temix has earned a leading position, thanks to a technology mix and strategic market view which allows it to undertake ambitious challenges. With a technological know-how based on worldwide direct experience in satellite, wireless and ICT applications partnered with research and development potential, Temix is able to develop innovative telecommunications systems in a very short time.
The convergence of unique communication platforms accessible from anywhere, from any terminal, is becoming a concrete model and a great growth opportunity. Temix has identified this scenario and it is one of the principal suppliers of innovative solutions for integrated, safe and reliable communications focused on Disaster Recovery, Industry (Oil & Gas, Mining, etc) and governmental applications also in extreme environmental conditions where Temix products reveal their main added value.
In this sense, Temix’s EasyFLYSAT Communication Terminal represent the most value of Temix’s capabilities answering to fundamental communications requirements like communication with enterprise network and internet as well connecting M2M networks and equipment.
Beniamino Grasso Head of Sales says EasyFLYSAT is only-one-package terminal with all the equipment integrated in a rugged Carbon Fiber/Kevlar chassis with controlled temperature. This permits it to work in very harsh environment reducing the operations to be done on field in 6 minutes and this makes their products unique for the African environment. He concludes and says that their products are available in African countries like Libya, Nigeria, Congo, Zambia, Uganda and Kenya.
Established in 1976 in UK, Barrett Communications is a world designer and manufacturer of “free to air” long distance high frequency (HF) radio communications equipment.
Barrett offers an extensive range of communication systems that can expand into complete, secure and independent communications networks that are intuitive to operate with minimal training. Barrett products and systems are expertly created to provide the best in HF communications technology. The flexibility of the product and software/firmware design has enabled them to customise and tune systems to mission objectives and requirements.
Their current 2000 Series combines current technology with the intuitive “ease of use” which has become synonymous with Barrett Communications HF equipment. The transceivers software defined core is readily upgradable by way of a simple software download and it’s unique design allows it to be readily configured and deployed as either a desktop or mobile transceiver. The modular construction of the Base, Mobile and Manpack transceiver is shared down to PCB level simplifying logistics within large organizations.
Barrett has over 30 years experience in designing, supplying and installing remote area HF communications globally and experienced staff well trained in UN and international aid agency (NGO) requirements.
Nigel Pescott Business Develop Manager – European Office says that Barrett products combine ruggedness and intuitive ease of use whch has been the key to the products success and popularity the world over. Minimal training is required in comparison to most other brands on the market. He concludes that Barrett Communications markets and sells its products globally and Africa has proven to be a large and successful part of Barrett’s market.
RTS is an industry leader in the design and manufacture of intercom solutions. The RTS family of digital intercom matrices is the most extensive, widely used line of intercoms in the world. From the top-of-the-line ADAM matrix, available in sizes from 16 to more than 880 users, to the Zeus III LE 16-port matrix, RTS matrices are the standard for reliable, mission-critical communications in broadcast, military, industrial and entertainment applications.
RTS intercom systems also lead the industry with a complete suite of full duplex, highly configurable and expandable wireless intercom system platforms. With multiple award-winning innovations such as the BTR-800 two-channel frequency agile wireless intercom, the TR-825 two-channel stereo beltpack transceiver and proprietary digital encryption, RTS has led the way with innovative technology that allows users to move around freely while maintaining „wired-like“ quality and reliability.
Closed or open mines can be installed with wall keypanel units with built-in microphones. Taking into consideration the fact that environmental and ambient noise will be relatively high, the keypanel will be integrated with call light and sounder to indicate the incoming call from the station master or signal master for the communication. The system can be programmed in such a manner that sounder and call light will be engaged within the specific programmed timer. The system can also be configured with a simple connection using the wired beltpack and in turn connected to under-helmet headsets .
RTS intercom systems are utilized in virtually every kind of application and venue throughout the world. Whatever your requirements may be, RTS has the intercom system that‘s right for you. RTS intercoms are the systems of choice among communications professionals everywhere.ys
Ashbury SatCom UK
Ashbury was founded in the year 2000 to develop hardware for the corporate wireline telecommunications industry. Today they specialise in the supply of handheld satellite phones and portable satellite data terminals for business and individuals.
They are an international company with operations in the United Kingdom, United States, and South Africa. Key brand names of the satellite communications products and services provided by Ashbury SatCom are Globalstar, Inmarsat, Iridium & Thuraya.
Travellers, adventurers, and explorers rely on them to provide the satellite communications that enable them to stay connected in the field. So do maritime, security, conservation, forestry, mining, construction, emergency and humanitarian aid organisations.
Ashbury SatCom continually sets the standards for customer service in the satellite phone business. They leverage localised skill and industry experience to compete on a global basis. They have the simplest airtime services in the industry and a highly streamlined order-fulfilment value chain.
One of their most popular phones by far is the Inmarsat iSatPhone Pro Satellite Phone, it is suitable to most travellers and general remote-calling applications, and it is one of their all-time best sellers. Inmarsat iSatPhone PRO is easy to use, and friends and family (or colleagues) can send texts to it free of charge via their web app.
Charles Barber from Ashbury SatCom says that the uniqueness of their products is that their satellite phones and satellite internet terminals works everywhere that cellular does not and this feature makes it suitable for the African environment. He concludes and says that their products are available throughout Africa.
Pegasus Network Systems Limited
Pegasus Network Systems has an Office near Frankfurt am Main in Germany. The company supports the development, Installation, Maintenance and Sales of the Pegasus Network Engineering Analysis tool (NEAt) used for analysis of many types of Mobile Radio Systems. Some examples are: TETRA, MPT1327, P25 as well as other familiar name systems from companies like Cassidian, EADS, Nokia, Hytera, Rohde & Schwarz and Motorola. NEAT installations that have been installed on 4 continents throughout the world are supported from Frankfurt.
Pegasus delivers Mobile Radio Cell Usage/loading reports for the frequency authorities. Their company’s main products and services are for the PMR (Private Mobile Radio) market in particular for TETRA and MPT1327 mobile radio systems. In particular they deliver the “Cell Loading” Reports for frequency authorities and regulators, where every Mobile Radio System Network Operator must regularly report usage of frequencies else lose use of those frequencies. That’s why it is important to use the Pegasus NEAt (Engineering Tool) to generate these Reports.
Adrian Gibson from Pegasus Network Systems Limited says that when purchasing a mine communication system it would be good that the client trains one engineer with Pegasus. He further says that Pegasus NEAt becomes more and more exclusive as time goes by.
Wireless Corp delivers leading radio communications solutions integral to “mission critical” operations. One of their many products is the X10DR Secure Wireless Microphone which can be teamed up when required to provide triple user operation from a single mobile radio. The smart node interface passes both transmit and receive audio to each X10DR ensuring each user hears both active parts of the communications sent over the host two way radio channel. Africa radio systems usually require use of mobile vehicle radios to communicate long distance. X10Dr allows a user to use the car radio when outside the vehicle for up to 300 meters
When teams are working in rural or remote environments, the vehicle mounted mobile radio is the team’s sole communication link to management and other work teams. However, when one team member needs to run back and wait at the vehicle, to provide or receive an update, work operations slow or at worst come to a standstill, losing time, money and productivity. X10DR is revolutionary technology, which allows teams to stay in communication with each other onsite or back to base, via their vehicle mounted mobile radio, up to hundreds of meters from the vehicle.
The advanced model X10DR Secure Wireless Microphone naturally provides a duress button that can be used to activate the emergency mode within the host mobile radio. Should a lone worker become injured or need emergency assistance, they can now instantly sound the alarm and instantly communicate with their control room dispatcher even while hundreds of meters from their vehicle. X10DR provides worker safety, increases productivity and yet reduces business costs. X10DR is a win-win win solution
Tunnel Radio of America
Tunnel Radio of America® for more than 25 years has engineered UHF and VHF Two-way Radio Communications, Tracking & Collision Avoidance, Gas Sensing and Remote-Accessible System Monitoring products that have set the standard for performance and dependability. The first reliable mine radio system in the United States was installed by Tunnel Radio near Juneau, Alaska in 1988. This system is still in full use today having expanded many miles since the initial installation. Tunnel Radio has installed and supports wireless systems all over the world. Tunnel Radio is committed to providing the most reliable, high performance, and cost effective radio systems available. Their product line is diverse, and their engineering department is constantly working to develop cutting-edge technologies and to refine existing products so that they can offer quality equipment that is perfectly suited to the operational requirements of the industry. Tunnel Radio believes in strong customer support and in-house training for basic servicing and expansion of their systems.
According to Tunnel Radio’s Marketing Manager Carolynne Hayden, their Company is focusing on Africa. TR’s products can be purchased through distributor Halo Communications South Africa, Carolynne also added that their company offers the highest power amplifier in the industry providing the widest communication coverage area available. Combine their Communications, RFID Personnel Tracking and System Diagnostics for a customized All-In-One Solution that will provide your operation a power competitive edge.
Located in Corvallis, Oregon, Tunnel Radio has dealerships throughout North America, Australia, South America, Asia, and Africa. Tunnel Radio has positioned itself as a leading-edge technology company which prides itself in providing its customers with high quality products for each unique application.
If you need to connect your remote devices with communications capability to enhance services, monitor assets, gain real time intelligence, or a myriad of other reasons, you will need a hardware solution that is reliable and ready-to-integrate. Multi-Tech Systems has been delivering industry-leading M2M (machine-to-machine) communications solutions since 1970. With more than 22 million devices deployed worldwide, Multi-Tech focuses on helping customers achieve the shortest path to M2M connectivity – from concept to implementation and total lifecycle management. Whether a project is simple or very complex, Multi-Tech has the resources and expertise to work with any development team to customize a hardware or software solution that maximizes speed to market and return on investment.
With carrier-approved external and embedded modems and gateways in multiple form factors, Multi-Tech makes it easy and fast to connect your devices to networks anywhere in the world. The company works with clients in almost any market to enable cellular, analog, Bluetooth® and GPS capabilities into a solution to achieve superior business results.
Serving the African continent for years through their designated distributors, companies around the world select Multi-Tech products for their ease of use, reliability and consistent form factor across multiple technologies.
Multi-Tech established its reputation for innovative designs and innovative solutions by obtaining 80+ patents and certifications from more than 30 carriers and over 80 countries. Multi-Tech has made M2M Simplified for thousands of customers around the globe. Multi-Tech offers educational webinars on-demand for those who want to learn more about connecting remote devices. Visit www.multitech.com/training/m2m.go.
They are the Industry’s Leading Provider of Unified Asset Visibility Solutions for Mining, Manufacturing, and Oil & Gas Industries.
AeroScout is the global market leader in Unified Asset Visibility. Their mining customers increase operational efficiency by improving asset productivity and worker safety. In addition to knowing where all mine equipment and workers are in real-time, their system automatically monitors telemetry conditions such as equipment voltage, temperature and humidity. Vehicle voltage monitoring reports the actual run hours of the equipment helping to optimize maintenance schedules and reduce material spend.
AeroScout products leverage standard Wi-Fi networks to determine the location, condition and status of mobile assets and people. The company invented the first Wi-Fi-based Active RFID tag and now, AeroScout systems are used by more than 800 customers worldwide in Mining, Manufacturing and Oil & Gas industries to automate business processes and improve operations. Their partnerships with Cisco Systems, Intel, NEC and other leading technology and solution providers have brought AeroScout systems to the forefront of the rapidly expanding marketplace.
Patrick Gilbert, Director of Product Marketing says that they see an expansion of Wi-Fi infrastructure being added to both underground and surface mines to facilitate productivity applications like location, communication, and data reporting for analytics. He concludes and says that their products are available in Africa.
Based in Australia Austdac drive the market in specialized rugged communications, supplying telephones, evacuation systems, intercoms and critical telecom’s equipment to industry and the public sector. Their expertise and 40 year’s experience encompass rail and road networks, oil and gas installations, mines, hazardous environments, hygiene-acute locations and public information networks.
The Austdac conveyor monitoring and Control system is based on the Austdac Silbus transmission system for monitoring and control of all field emergency stop switches and the Austdac voice communication system for the per-start warning and voice communication from all units.
The Austdac system is used on conveyors and longwall systems worldwide with over 80 longwall installations in Australia, Russia, UK, USA, and South Africa.
They also have a Surface control room computer based system to connect all voice communication systems to each other and to surface control room. This computer based system will allow the control room to have the ability to connect all systems or to connect to one system only to allow communications from the control room, to one system such as out by conveyor. It will also allow the operator to initiate a system wide emergency warning should the need arise.
The Austdac Silbus monitoring and control system used on every system has the capability on each system to monitor and control up to 128 digital and/or analogue signals. The emergency stop function will be rated to a SIL2 safety category.
George Chaggar, the International Business Development Manager says that their products are available in Africa.
Powering business across Africa
Global satellite operator SES provides reliable, flexible and secure communications services to broadcasters, content and internet service providers, mobile and fixed network operators and business and governmental organisations worldwide.
Oil & Gas exploration and drilling companies work in some of the most remote places on earth. With a growing fleet of 55 satellites, 9 of which cover Africa, SES has the satellite capacity to provide global coverage for your drilling sites, oil rigs and tankers across continents and oceans. SES’ high performance broadband links and secure data channels enable you to set up remote monitoring for your equipment, providing up to date, real-time data from the field round the clock. Furthermore, SES satellite coverage allows off-site teams to stay connected with colleagues and keep in touch with their family and friends. With SES, you can communicate more reliably and securely through corporate networks, HD video and video conferencing, improving the way you do business, increasing staff retention and overall company efficiency. You can rely on SES for reliable, secure connectivity, worldwide, cost effective coverage and global customer support.
The culturally diverse regional teams of SES are located around the globe and work closely with customers to meet their specific satellite bandwidth and service requirements. To service the African continent, SES has offices and local teams on the ground in Johannesburg, Accra and Addis Ababa.
SES (NYSE Euronext Paris and Luxembourg Stock Exchange: SESG) holds participations in Ciel in Canada and QuetzSat in Mexico, as well as a strategic participation in satellite infrastructure start-up O3b Networks.
Communication Specialists Ltd (CSL)
They are world renowned for providing reliable communications solutions, including commercial and private two way radio & wireless systems. CSL specifies and installs central radio communications in the United Kingdom, European, African and Asian markets with leading edge products from their partners Codan, Hytera and Motorola. Based in the UK, CSL offers unique solutions for any event large or small and much larger field projects such as the installation of Codan in United Nations vehicles.
Many organisations around the world depend on their communication systems and expertise. Instant communications, exchange of critical information and security monitoring are vital tools in many large industries, wireless communications are universally recognized as the most efficient and cost-effective solution to meet these needs and ensure smooth day-to-day administrative and operational procedures.
CSL’s experts can help you identify and source the most effective technology for your business and support you as you integrate this into your operation. They work to high customer expectations and achieve similarly high levels of customer satisfaction.
They provide communication solutions which include; Antennas, Asia Pacific, Base Stations, Digital
HF SSB, Intrinsically Safe, Codan Land Mobile, Manpacks, Military Radios, Mission Critical, Mobile Stations, Portables, PMR and Repeater Stations.
Simone of Communication Specialists says that their products are available in Africa and they have agents in Rwanda, Equatorial Guinea and Libya.
Becker Varis provides automationCommunication Service to mining and tunneling companies worldwide. Their success is a result of industry leading advancements in underground, wireless communication, the latest in resource tracking systems, remote blasting devices and global service capabilities.
Their Smart Com Ethernet system uses Varis’ proven Smart Com amplifier and its industry leading 25 MHz bandwidth to provide high speed TCP/IP data transfer through Leaky Feeder. It utilizes industry standard cable modem technology to provide wired and wireless ethernet applications such as computer networking, IP cameras, tele-operation and VoIP in underground hotspots for less.
According to Becker Varis Managing Director Albert Bower currently their products are available in Africa through their sister company in South Africa and can be purchased from them directly or through their agents located in Africa.
Smart Com Leaky Feeder technology provides two-way communication underground which means constant contact with miners throughout the mine. Smart Com also supports automated man-working–alone systems, integrated cap lamp radios and pagers. The technologically advanced high-gain, low-noise Smart Com amplifiers enable superior, contiguous VHF radio coverage so that the message is sent and received loud and clear consistently.
This technology has numerous advantages in that it is real time, two-way, push-to-talk voice communication that is the proven technology for dispatching and team co-ordination. Only Smart Com Leaky Feeder provides up to 16 VHF radio channels without intermodulation noise so channels can be allocated to groups which cuts down on radio chatter and improves channel access.
American Mine Research, Inc.
American Mine Research, Inc., based in the USA with local representation by Victor Industrial Equipment in Gauteng, South Africa, has been a leading manufacturer of monitoring and control electronics for the worldwide mining industry since 1975. Their product and service offerings have expanded to satisfy the needs of surface and underground mining, aggregates and tunneling operations. AMR’s product line is constantly improving and currently includes Ground Monitors for electrical equipment, Electronic Circuit Breakers, Motion and Tilt Switches in addition to their Wireless Tracking, Wireless Communications, and Atmospheric Monitoring solutions.
AMR’s MineNet™ Mesh Wireless Tracking and Voice Communications Systems provide real-time audio, video and data over a completely Wi-Fi wireless infrastructure. The communications, along with personnel or equipment tracking and mine-monitoring functions, such as toxic gas detection, conveyor system monitoring, pump and fan controls, are all transmitted via standard, non-proprietary IEEE 802.11 protocols.
According to American Mine Research International Sales & Marketing Manager, Gary L. Sergent, their company is currently focused in Africa and their products can be purchased through their local representative in South Africa, Victor Industrial Equipment. Gary also added that their products are unique in that they are designed to be open protocol with ability to interface with other manufacturer’s equipment by providing multiple connection types for use with any means of control system.
MineNet™ Mesh has numerous practical applications in addition to real time personnel location during critical situations. Through the use of Smart phones, tablet and laptops it is possible to transmit images of roof conditions or accidents. For maintenance personnel it is possible to access documents from a computer network or via the Internet including real time conversations and video with suppliers for a piece of equipment that has malfunctioned. The applications for a robust, wireless network in an underground mine are great.
BriCom Solutions is an American technology company specializing in interoperability communications and R&D research. Their newest product the AlianzaDxB combines smart phone and RF technology into one device, allowing you to use all the features of your existing smart phone and combine them with a two way radio without sacrificing the mission critical components or reliability. The AlianzaDxB allows you to be able to communicate more efficiently via walkie-talkie but also it’s able to send text messages, video conference and browse the web. The DxB is perfect for public safety and large scale operations where normal LMR radio coverage isn’t enough.
The AlianzaDxB is a good solution for mining operations especially ones running voice/data lines for the following reasons: More cost effective communication tool, eliminating the need for expensive repeaters/antenna runs. Gives much more flexibility with communications. IP based dispatch consoles can communicate between two-way radios and smart phone/tablets. IP gateway mode expands two way radio coverage. Assist safety reports by tracking your employee’s location. Send live data/video feeds to assist daily operations. Eliminates need to carry multiple devices.
When asked for her opinion on the emerging trends in the mine communication sector, Dorothy Jimenez Director of Operations-Communications says, “I see consumers eliminating the need for expensive LMR networks like repeaters, trunk patches, telephony and expensive hardware that need a large support staff. The AlianzaDxB is a perfect example of this by allowing you to use all the current trending technology like SMS, video, and email without the need for all the expensive hardware and support. All of this combined makes the DxB a really cost effective solution”.
Electrodata Group Pty
They are a privately owned company based in Australia. Electrodata has been providing critical voice recording solutions to its many customers, both domestic and international, for some 43 years.
Electrodata provides State of the Art solutions that record from all types of telephone and two way radio which include analogue, digital, VoIP and RoIP. Typically recordings are stored on the customers’ network for easy access via the internet using their thin client Platinum Player. They are currently delivering hosted solutions for customers with VoIP technology, to provide the most cost effective and integrated solutions. Fast response for Customer Service is via VPN access.
Their next major development is a cloud recording solution which will be easier to administer and more flexible in terms of growth and change. For example, customers have no hardware to maintain and will have the flexibility to add or subtract voice channels to match their exact requirements. The major additional benefit is that customers will only pay for the capacity that they use, and can pay monthly in arrears, rather than paying up front for hardware and software with surplus capacity.
John Green from Electrodata Group Pty says that when buying a mine communication system, a person should look at the price, security of data, reliability and VPN support. He further says that the trends emerging in the near future to suit the customer preference is that of cloud computing solution lowering the cost to the customer
Cobham Tactical Communications and Surveillance
Cobham’s Mine Shaft Communication System provides a revolutionary robust, wireless communications network within a subterranean environment. As a leading designer of wireless communication technologies, they work with military, law enforcement, counter-terror units, governments, corporations and system integrators on key surveillance and communication challenges.
The unique performance capabilities of Cobham’s wireless COFDM technology allows mining organisations to extend their existing operational infrastructure from above ground directly to the mine face.
Limitations in range and robustness of traditional below ground communications can be significantly improved by use of this new Cobham technology. The Cobham wireless system allows the rapid deployment of an IP based communications system, either integrated with existing infrastructure or supplied as a standalone solution.
Cobham’s COFDM digital, microwave technology enables mine operators to create a secure, robust, resilient, wireless link, transporting IP data, video, audio, sensor and tracking information from below ground to the surface.
This technology lends itself, not only to mine shaft and tunnel security, but also to mine safety, lift shaft communications and bell control. Additionally the streaming of real time data from machinery, at the mine face, to the surface can add significantly to productivity.
Cobham have a wide-range of wireless COFDM and IP Radios, developed for the Security sector, ideally suited for use in harsh conditions like Africa. Also thermal cameras, covert audio and video transmitters band recorders and GPS and RF tracking devices.
Cobham also have sales offices around the world, including in South Africa.
They are an ASX listed technology company with headquarters in the United Kingdom and engineering facilities around the world. They specialise in wireless communications technologies for customers in the public safety, defence, transit, utilities and mining industries.
Their protocol stacks and all-IP infrastructure are exported globally and licensed by leading LMR/PMR manufacturers; while their Australian solutions partner and subsidiary, Auria Wireless, manufactures complete digital radio networks using Etherstack technology.
Working with Etherstack, system integrators can build flexible, feature rich, end-to-end radio networks that are scalable from single site to wide area footprints.
Etherstack’s all-IP infrastructure is based on the latest PTT over IP technologies, and suits ALL floor-controlled air interface protocols including APCO P25, DMR and analogue. Furthermore, it supports the simultaneous, separate operation of these as well as cross-banding between them for interoperability.
Mission critical functions such as geographical tracking, location based dispatch, third party console support via a standardized interface and PSTN gateway are all supported in addition to fast secure PTT voice and data.
Etherstack hopes to vastly simplify the purchase, construction and scaling of radio infrastructure.
Anna Squires Director of Etherstack Ltd says that their systems provide superb coverage, reliability and features at a good price point. They have satisfied customers in Australia, the USA and Russia with similar terrain, climate and customer requirements to Africa. She concludes and says that they focus on Africa as a market and provide digital radio networks for mining, utilities and public safety agencies.
Logimine is a leader in surface mine fleet management systems; developing, manufacturing and integrating robust and cost effective tracking systems.Its fleet management systems comprise software, onboard terminals and radio and GPS communications, enabling real-time tracking of vehicle position and movement, monitoring of operational activities such as: dispatch, loading, drilling, blasting, and control of quality and stock. They are the only company in the mining market to offer a dispatch system that works with a UHF radio network – requiring only 1/10 of the relays needed by an equivalent Wi-Fi system (ideal for remote sites). Their systems are used worldwide. In particular, the company has worked closely and nurtured long term relationships with clients in Africa, such as CBG (ALCOA Group) and Somaïr (Areva).
Their products include the PCC4.3 Summit, practical fleet management software, which is built on 14 years of worldwide mining industry deployment by Logimine to enable real-time supervision of operational activities of mine and quarries. The software is very user-friendly and benefits from an open architecture, a high-speed interface and is fully customizable.
Robust 4″ and 6” colour TFT terminals are installed in the truck cabin to collect production data such as truck cycles, positions, speed engine, tyre pressure and loading/unloading activities. The data are safely stored into a powerful built-in database and transmittable via VHF/UHF radio.
Bruno Laforgue, Logimine President, says that to maximize operational costs, it is necessary to use a fleet management system that determines optimal loading, tyre pressure and fuel efficiency. The Logimine system valuates all of these factors.
The Bosch Group
The Bosch Group is a leading global supplier of technology and services based in Germany, active in the fields of automotive technology, industrial technology, consumer goods, mining, energy and building technology.
The Bosch Group comprises Robert Bosch GmbH and its roughly 360 subsidiaries and regional companies in some 50 countries. Their worldwide development, manufacturing, and sales network are the foundation for further growth. Bosch spent some 4.8 billion euros for research and development in 2012, and applied for nearly 4,800 patents worldwide.
According to Bosch Group Africa’s Sales and Marketing manager Eulene Jones their company is focusing on Africa for their growth and their products can be found in many countries across Africa through their partner programme. Eulene also added that they offer high speed, IP and digital technologies that reduce bandwidth needed in an enviroment with bandwidth restrictions. They provide end-end solutions with a one stop shop but can easily integrate into other systems as they make use of open standards. Bosch offer the highest standards and quality products, robust solutions for all types of verticals, from public sector , mining ,airports and stadiums
Bosch provides a comprehensive range of products and solutions for the mining industry to mine owners, planners, contractors, and mining engineering companies around the world. Whether the project requires energy efficient heating and hot-water systems from respected brands, innovative and intuitive CCTV systems, or the hard-wearing power tools needed for professional installation, Bosch has a choice of products that are commonplace across mining sites today.
Minnesota Wire, St. Paul Minnesota, USA, has been engineering and manufacturing innovative solutions for complex custom cable assemblies since 1968. Minnesota Wire is one of a few facilities of its kind. They are a full-service development and manufacturing house for specialized wire, cable and harness assemblies. They excel at solving unique and difficult electronic interconnect problems for the medical, defense, industrial, aerospace and other markets.
The company is vertically integrated in that they can execute your solution from concept to production – all in their facilities. If you need a unique cable for a specialty mining application they can make it. Minnesota Wire has a long history of new product development. Their engineering flexibility has helped them satisfy customer requirements for many years.
According to Minnesota Wire’s New Product Development Director Brian Wagner their products are not available currently in Africa but they are looking forward to venturing into Africa. Brian also added that their products have been designed for the harshest environments. Cables and assemblies constructed with ruggedized features work and function under conditions where others fail. Mining and oil exploration and monitoring are often done in areas with extreme temperatures.
A variety of their customers have requested a more durable style of cable and connection than they can buy off the shelf or from other vendors. Minnesota Wire has developed a core competency in the design and production of these ruggedized cables. Many examples are in the field today providing improved performance over “old-style” designs.
3D-P is a global company that is headquartered in Calgary, Canada and has been enabling wireless networking for over a decade. The company develops ruggedized open computing and wireless networking platforms that are designed specifically for mining. The company’s products have been deployed in some of the largest mines in the world and their customer base includes some of the largest mining operators.
Ben Greenwood from 3D-P advises mine operators to carefully consider both their current needs as well attempt to anticipate their future requirements based on emerging new applications and technologies. He also added that deploying a system that is future-proofed and scalable will extend the longevity of the network and significantly improve return on investment. 3D-P sells its products globally Africa being inclusive either direct or through its designated agents.
The company’s core product offering is the Intelligent Endpoint which is a ruggedized open computing platform with multiple hardware interfaces and an integrated radio. The Intelligent Endpoint is deployed on heavy machinery and simplifies the networking of on-board applications such as dispatch, vehicle health and proximity alert systems. Endpoint Manager Software allows for centralized configuration of each Intelligent Endpoint through an intuitive GUI which eliminates the need for extensive training or in-depth IT knowledge.
3D-P products are developed with an open architecture to permit simple customization; this allows them to quickly integrate new radio technologies as they emerge and deploy on virtually any network regardless of vendor.
They are a worldwide communications solutions and satellite service provider with headquarters in Sarasota, Florida. The store provides satellite phones and broadband internet terminals for sales or rentals combined with airtime packages customized to their clients’ need.
SatellitePhoneStore.com is a global provider of satellite voice and data communication solutions to remote areas. Their team of technical solutions sales and service experts has more than 40 years combined experience in the satellite telecommunications industry.
They specialize in delivering end-to-end solutions along with stellar support, making satellite communications accessible for any level of user. They are actively pursuing contracts with federal, state and local government agencies, in addition to targeted private sector markets.
SatellitePhoneStore.com provides a full range of satellite voice, data, tracking and telemetry solutions, as partners / authorized resellers of industry leading companies such as: Iridium, Intellian, Furuno, Cisco, Thuraya and many others.
Their product and service offering includes sales, service and rentals for satellite phones, BGAN, fleet broadband, VSAT, personnel and asset tracking, emergency locator beacons, and more.
Philip Sexton the Vice President of Operations says that they are a distributor for the manufactures of Iridium, Inmarsat and Viasat and a reseller for airtime. He concludes and says that their products are available in Africa.
MDA is a global communications and information company providing operational solutions to commercial and government organizations worldwide. The company’s business is focused on markets and customers with strong repeat business potential. In addition, the Company conducts a significant amount of advanced technology development and Geospatial Services uses proprietary technologies and processes to provide services to the mining sector.
With 40 years of experience in remote sensing technologies, MDA is one of the largest and most experienced providers of satellite-based monitoring products in the world. The company offers rapid access to surveillance information through RADARDAT-2, a powerful C-Band Synthetic Aperture Radar satellite for a wide range of civil, commercial, and defense applications.
According to MDA’s Corporate Communications Manager Wendy Keyzer currently their products are available in Africa. MDA has also recently signed an agreement with Southern Mapping to act as their distributor for mining products in Africa. Southern Mapping brings many years of mining-related mapping services to the industry. Wendy also added that their products have unique features of RADARSAT imagery ideally suited to areas with persistent cloud cover.
With a successful image acquisition rate of 98.8%, RADARSAT-2 reliably provides high-resolution, weather-independent, year-round coverage of your mining operation. Multiple ground stations and global offices enable MDA to offer the most reliable and timely delivery of InSAR monitoring services MDA delivers innovative, cost effective, advanced geospatial information solutions. There are many potential environmental or physical hazards associated with operational, closed, or abandoned mines; MDA’s mine monitoring solution delivers an accurate, cost-effective, easily integrated view of the state of the mine site, ensuring a greater understanding of potential mining infrastructure risks.
EDX®SignalPro® family of products is the industry’s tool of choice for designing accurate, reliable and scalable RF networks. Their advanced radio network planning software helps engineers plan, deploy and optimize virtually any wireless network from public safety, transportation, cellular and broadband to smart grid and beyond.
EDX SignalPro® is a comprehensive and fully featured RF planning software suite offering all the study types needed to design wireless networks, including area studies, link/point-to-point studies, point-to-multipoint and route studies.
According to EDX’s marketing manager Bob Akins their products are available in Africa and they can be directly purchased from them. Bob also added that their software is compatible with a large number of terrain and land use databases which allows users to import data specific to their geographic location. Integration with Bing and Google Earth Plug-in also allow users to stream satellite imagery directly into their project and export results to these platforms.
On the emerging trends of communication Bob added said networks are increasingly becoming multi-layered, multi-technology systems. As these networks have become larger and more complex, it is vital to not only plan, but to work with tools that will simplify both the design and optimization of integrated systems.
EDX SignalPro also incorporates the latest telecom-specific mapping features, extensive equipment data storage capabilities and a wealth of RF specific utility functions, making it the tool of choice for professional RF engineers worldwide. SignalPro can be extended through advanced design modules for specialized architectures, technologies and applications, including: indoor and DAS, Multipoint, advanced network design, Mobile/Cellular, WiMAX and Mesh planning. Among these advanced modules include the ability to import AutoCAD tag walls with relevant RF material and height parameters, creating a platform ideal for planning underground communication systems.
RADWIN is a leading global provider of wireless Point-to-Point and point-to-MultiPoint solutions in the sub-6GHz space.
RADWIN’s wireless solutions deliver Voice, Video and Data on a single platform with high capacity (up to 250Mbps). The systems incorporate cutting-edge technologies and interference mitigation techniques, including MIMO and OFDM. The highly durable solutions operate flawlessly in all environments and are extremely simple to install and maintain.
RADWIN FiberinMotion™ mobility solution delivers wireless broadband in motion of up to 100Mbps at speeds of 250Km/h. FiberinMotion is an ideal solution for HD video surveillance on the move .
RADWIN’s solutions are ideal for a broad range of markets and applications, and are deployed in over 150 countries. The Point-to-Point and Point-to-MultiPoint solutions are used by Tier-1 carriers and service providers for backhaul and broadband access applications.
According to Avi Matsliah, RADWIN’s Sales Director for East Africa & Middle East, RADWIN products arealready available in Africa. Avi also advised on customers considering wireless equipment have to make sure they require secured links and also function reliably (Interference mitigation, IP67 enclosure etc.) in longer range than WiFi based radios. The wireless solutions need to be built to reliably support high throughput in harsh conditions that include radio frequency interferences.
On the emerging trends Avi added that governments and private companies are looking for more bandwidth in order to enable more applications. Applications include connectivity to remote villages and remote mines. Additionally, Video surveillance which consumes a lot of bandwidth is becoming a very common use, not only by private organizations but also by municipalities. This means wireless vendors will keep developing new solutions to cater the growing demand for data, video and internet access.
Based in England they are now Europe’s largest re-seller of Satellite Internet equipment. They not only supply and install equipment but have a large number of subscribers to their own satellite internet service, which was established in 1999.
One of the world’s leading service providers for broadband satellite Internet, Bentley walker is extending its service coverage towards South Africa using their own Freedomsat service and will be commercially available from February 2014. This service adds to their existing range of FreedomsatKa-band networks already covering Afghanistan, Libya, Iraq and Zimbabwe. This new generation Satellite Internet service brings unprecedented capacity and affordability across all coverage areas, including some of the most remote places in Africa.
The service supports the iDirect Evolution modem, an industry leading technology with world-class support for corporate applications including VPN and VoIP. Evolution connections benefit from DVB-S2 with ACM (Adaptive Coding Modulation) for the most advanced levels of efficiency and reliability. This makes Freedomsat services attractive not just to end users but also to businesses with demanding corporate requirements.
In areas of high rainfall their C-band service on satellite W2A provides their customers with increased resistance to rain fade for unprecedented reliability. Bentley Walker offers a huge range of service plans for all platforms.
As part of their global deployment strategy, Bentley Walker has established an extensive network of in-country resellers to deal hands-on with local sales and support enquiries. This aspect forms a key part of Bentley Walker’s unique approach to doing business by offering shorter reaction times, resulting in increased customer satisfaction. Bentley Walker is actively looking for channel partners so if you believe your business is fit for purpose, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Bentley Walker Satellite Internet services are available throughout Africa. They have hardware partnerships with iDirect, Hughes and Newtec and deliver C-, Ku- and Ka-band services across the whole of Africa with their satellite partners Avanti, Eutelsat, Telesat and Yahsat. Bentley Walker are exhibiting at SATCOM 2014 to promote their brand new high speed Ka-band network over South Africa and are looking for channel partners in the region.
Rajant Corporation is the pioneer of Kinetic Mesh Networks based in Germany and hosts multinational billion-dollar organizations because of its proven, multi-frequency mesh network solution, Flexibility, scalability and availability are paramount in mining. The network can be easily deployed, exceptionally rugged to endure harsh conditions and be able to reliably cover an ever-changing landscape.
According to Rajant Corporation’s Account Executive Sean M. Teaford currently their company is focused in Africa and they sell in all African countries through their partner Scan RF Projects based in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Their introduction of advanced computer hardware and software technology as well as wireless communications have enabled huge gains in both productivity and safety while reducing maintenance and downtime in open pit and underground mining operations.
Similar to battlefield situations, mining operations consist of multiple vehicles, equipment and personnel, dispersed across rugged terrain – all of which require constant, reliable high-bandwidth connections while on the move.
Given the mobility of mining equipment, and line-of-sight issues posed by rapidly changing topography, providing this level of wireless coverage in mines can require an inordinate amount of coordination, scale, planning and support infrastructure.
Rajant has set the standard for resilient and flexible broadband connectivity in some of the largest and most productive mines worldwide and none of which have experienced a catastrophic failure since installing Rajant’s Kinetic Mesh Network technology.
Minetec Pty Ltd
Gateway Communications, Inc
Jon F Rowley
Joseph Tsai/Regional Manager
The PBE Group
Mine Site Technologies (MST)
Jurie van Rensburg
+27 (0)12345 6100
New Era Systems Inc.
Northern Light Technologies
Global Telesat Communications Ltd
Kirstie Lamont (Marketing Agency)
TEMIX Communication Engineering Srl
Mobile: +971/50 554 7432
Ashbury SatCom UK
Pegasus Network Systems Limited
Communication Specialists Ltd (CSL)
American Mine Research, Inc.
Gary L. Sergent
Electrodata Group Pty
Cobham Tactical Communications and Surveillance
Territory Manager – Africa
Whenever Communications, LLC / dba SatellitePhoneStore.com
Scan RF Projects