Railway Radio

The railway radio is a modern, flexibile and modular radio system, designed to provide wireless communication on the rail routes in digital and/or analog wireless networks. The system can be used on a rail vehicle or as the stationary unit. The mobile version is available with one or two driver consoles mounted in the cabin(s) of the vehicle/loco and supplied from the on-board power network with a wide-input-range voltage converter module. The stationary, mains-powered version, the system can be controlled with the standard, locally mounted console or remotely, via Ethernet sub-network by a radio communication dispatcher software run on PC. The modular design allows to adjust the hardware configuration of the radio  system to the requirements of the customer.
The radio system meets the following requirements:

  • pan-European digital GSM-R network (GSM dedicated for the needs of railways),
  • Polish railway analog voice and signaling in the VHF band,
  • Czech and Slovak railway analog voice and signaling in the VHF band.

Additionaly, the radio system provides several useful services:

  • real-time talks recording,
  • all radio system events recording (alarms, messages etc.),
  • easy configuration via USB,
  • remote diagnostics via optional GSM modem over GPRS,
  • VHF DMR (Digital Mobile Radio) compatibility,
  • remote-mode VoIP option.

The railway radio contains the master module and several appropriate connectivity terminals (VHF, GSM, GSM-R, UIC) - depending on the railway network standards used by the customer. User console(s) are connected to the master module via IDSL digital bus or via analog connection.


Master module

Master module  is the heart of the  railway radio system. It serves the following tasks:

  • management and control of all of the rack modules,
  • data and audio transfer with user consoles,
  • switching audio channels in a system,
  • calls and system events recording on the SDHC flash memory card,
  • Ethernet communication,
  • USB communication,
  • GPS data reception.

The design uses the STM32F4 ARM Cortex4 microcontroller and several specialized IC's: IDSL digital transmission controllers, PCM audio codecs, Ethernet, USB 2.0 (host/slave), GPS module and SDHC memory card.


VHF module

VHF module is a part of the  railway radio system, allowing VHF band calls in half-duplex mode in both standards: analog and digital (ETSI DMR - Digital Mobile Radio). Optionally fitted with an additional VHF module it gains the capability to work in full-duplex mode. The module provides compatibility with Polish, Czech and Slovak VHF-band analogue systems (voice & signaling). The design exploits the STM32F4 ARM Cortex4 microcontroller as the module controller and VHF Tait TM8100 series RF engine radio units. For VHF DMR digital mode operation AMBE codecs are used. The module also has an optional interface to connect the radio system with GSMR STM safety module (Specific Transmision Module) required for ETCS (European Train Control System).


GSM(-R) module

GSM(-R) module is a part of the railway radio system allowing for calls using GSM and/or GSM-R communication networks. The module uses Triorail TRC series GSM-R RF engine. Additionally, it has a capability to work in the GSM system, using the GSM BGS2 radio module. The concurrent work of two GSM(-R) modules is possible - eg. railway radio system may basically operate in GSM-R, and at the same time, a GPRS data transfer in GSM band can be used, for example to localize the vehicle using GPS technology. The system also can work in the reduced power consumption mode, with all modules disabled except the GSM modem. After receiving the GPRS message the whole system can be woken up to work. This module also uses a STM32F4 ARM Cortex4 microcontroller, as well as a number of specialized digital IC's - I/O interfaces, PCM codecs, ports, SDHC card etc.


UIC module

UIC module is responsible for establishing intercom communication between the driver and the service of the coach or - with help of the radio transmission - between the dispatcher and the service of the coach or passengers. The module is also compatibile with a carriage broadcast system. The functionality of the module meets the UIC-568 standard. There is an optional extension slot for the MVB (Multifunction Vehicle Bus) interface.