South Korean Rail Network to Deploy MCPTT, Connect with Radio Networks
Tuesday, January 02, 2018 | Comments

Samsung and Korean telecom firm KT announced that the Long Term Evolution-Railway (LTE-R) network for the new Wonju-Gangneung high-speed train line is now live. The network will include mission-critical push-to-talk (MCPTT) based on the Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) standards Release 13.

The activation represents the world’s first application of LTE-R technology to a high-speed train, with the new line traveling up to 250 kilometers per hour (155 mph), a statement said.

The new Wonju-Gangneung line, operated by the Korea Rail Network Authority (KRNA), spans 120 kilometers (75 miles) and will provide the public faster, easier access to the largest winter sports facilities region in South Korea, including PyeongChang. The LTE-R network is applied across the line’s seven stations, while the solution is interoperable with legacy trunked radio system (TRS), VHF systems and the national public-safety LTE network.

“We are delighted to work with Samsung to provide critical communications systems for this brand new high-speed train line,” said Yihan Kim, senior vice president and head of enterprise business performing unit of KT. “The new line puts Gangneung only two hours away from Seoul and will make the journey for PyeongChang visitors much faster and more convenient.”

LTE-R is a next-generation communications technology for smart train and metro services, enabling high-speed wireless voice and data communications inside trains, from train to ground and from train to train. In particular, LTE-R enables smooth and stable mission-critical communications — including MCPTT, group calls and voice over LTE (VoLTE ) — between train personnel and control centers. Samsung provided its radio access network (RAN) operating in 700 MHz, a global band for LTE-based public protection and disaster relief (PPDR); a dedicated core network including evolved packet core (EPC); and PTT servers deployed in two control centers, as well as rugged smartphones.

“Following Samsung’s first commercial deployment of LTE-R at the Busan Metro last April, this new implementation demonstrates the maturation and validation of our LTE-R solutions for high-speed trains,” said GY Seo, senior vice president and head of global sales and marketing team in networks business, Samsung Electronics. “We look forward to continued collaboration with KT in the deployment of the most innovative critical-communications technologies across the country.”

In 2015, Samsung was selected as a supplier for all five LTE-R projects in Korea, and is Korea’s leading LTE-R supplier. Its LTE-R solution is already in service on the 41-kilometer (26 miles) Busan Metro line 1 covering 40 stations in Korea’s second-largest city. Launched by Samsung in April 2017, it represented the nation’s first case of LTE-R technology being used during operation of a train/metro. Samsung is also deploying LTE-R on the line between Incheon International Airport and Seoul Station in the center of the capital.

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