ESMCP Releases Notice on Air to Ground Communications for ESN
Monday, September 17, 2018 | Comments

The U.K. Emergency Services Mobile Communications Programme (ESMCP) released a prior information notice (PIN) relating to the air to ground (A2G) aircraft communications system project. Air to ground has been an area flagged by ESMCP officials where more work is required for the Emergency Services Network (ESN).

The PIN aims to notify the market of recent developments and planned engagement activity. The program is re-assessing the potential technical options for aircraft communications system (ACS). ESMCP is seeking feedback from the market around the integration of push-to-talk (PTT) solutions with standard commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) equipment used in aircraft. In June, Home Office and public-safety officials researched the Kodiak PTT solution from Motorola Solutions during a U.S. trip.

The project is working with user organizations (UO) and further developing its requirements. There are two types of UOs, the three emergency services (3ES) UOs and other UOs. As part of this process, industry engagement is required to refine certain technical points, the notice said.

The authority would like to conduct a market review in preparation for a possible competitive tender for A2G services and associated equipment in support of the ESN. The program anticipates launching the procurement by the end of 2018.

Companies should register their interest by 21 September with a market engagement event in London planned 24 September. The estimated date of publishing a contract notice is 31 October.

The full PIN is here.

A report from the U.K. Home Office updating the parliamentary committee on the ESN timelines and budget β€” originally expected in January β€” was due at the end of July but had not been released at press time.

β€œThe review has concluded, and a decision on the future of the program will be made shortly," a Home Office spokesman said in August. "We will announce the outcome in due course."

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