U.K. ESN Has First Demonstration Over Live Mobile Network
Monday, February 26, 2018 | Comments

The U.K.’s public-safety Long Term Evolution (LTE) Emergency Service Network (ESN) had its first successful demonstration over a live public mobile network.

Engineers performed the test 8 February between an EE mobile mast site in Bristol and a location in Basingstoke. This was the first time Motorola Solutions software has linked together with the live mobile phone network and demonstrated prioritization of emergency services communications on a public network.

“This is a complex project which will provide the emergency services with the most advanced communications system of its kind anywhere in the world, which is why successful tests like these are an excellent achievement,” Nick Hurd, minister for policing and the fire service said. “Members of the public are already seeing some of the incidental benefits of the project like its improvement of the 4G mobile network; 90 percent of the U.K. is now covered.”

Other recent ESN progress includes:
• 130 handheld devices have now been produced for testing on the network.
• The first rapid response vehicle was tested, and more are now in production.
• Transport for London has now laid leaky feeder cables in almost 100 of 420 kilometers of tunnels in the London Underground.

• There have been more than 100 genuine 999 calls received through masts in place due to ESN where there was previously no coverage.

In November, a U.K. Home Office official said further delays to the network were likely. Last February, the Home Office announced a nine-month delay. The Public Accounts Committee held a hearing on the progress of the network 21 February.

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