Radio communications systems have been around for over a 100 years and played a vital role in the development of communications. Nowhere have radio communications been more important than at sea. In fact it was 100 years ago in 1909 that the first 1,600 lives were saved by an incredibly brave and competent radio operator called Jack Binns on board the vessel RMS Republick. Please see radio communications hero saves 1,600 lives at sea for more information.
Original Radio room
Modern walkie talkie
The term radio communications covers a multitude of different transmission systems from long range morse code providing truly global communications to private business radio (PBR) and local area license free pmr446 walkie talkies used in numerous applications today.
Modern radio communications are truly state of the art and capable of providing the instant transmission of voice and data anywhere in the world at the push of a button. It is for this reason that radio communications systems still play a crucial part in the modern world. In last two decades we have been told on numerous occasions mobile telephones will soon close the book on two way radio. In reality this has not been the case and the radio communications market place continues to grow year on year and shows no sign of coming to an end.
New digital radio communications equipment is now sold extensively in the modern market place with Motorola TDMA and Kenwood, Icom and others FDMA protocols. The YouPoc GSM offering provides an interface with radio communications functionality over the GSM network and seamless operation with voice over IP technology (VOIP) – Distance falls into insignificance once a network interface is made. The flexibility offered by IP protocol ensures wide area very low cost communications can be achieved.
What are the main benefits of Radio Communications?
- They offer the ability to provide Instant communication over given distances without unpredictable call costs
- They can provide individual calls or group calls to multiple users
- Calls can be prioritised i.e. emergency calls can be made
- PSTN Interconnect - an interface can be made with telephones systems to enable simplex telephone calls
- A host of functions can be added such as loan worker or man down for vulnerable workers allowing rapid responses with remote audio monitoring
- Voice storage options are available by digital voice recorders (DVR), enabling the storage of all communications on channels with simple searches of date and times to rapidly locate incidents
- For security and sensitive applications voice encryption can integrated to provide security up to the highest level – the safe passage of highly sensitive information can then take place securely, without the risk of being compromised
- Site linking via internet protocol – distance between sites is now insignificant due to IP interface – i.e. operating areas can now be linked together and communicate freely at the cost of a simple IP connection
We have listed above only a few of the many benefits radio communications has to offer in the 21st century. It is a fact that around 90% of radio communications in operation today use basic press to talk systems (PTT). Which offer instant, free back to back calls around local areas keeping people in constant contact with no associated running costs.
As a specialist radio communications supplier Maximon Solutions has extensive expertise in designing radios communications systems of all variants from the most basic to the most sophisticated digital or trunking networks. Simply give us a call and we will be please to visit and conduct a site survey with a view to providing a list of the most up to date and cost effective solutions to best suit your requirements.
The RMS Republic was a luxury liner of the White Star fleet, that had sailed from New York City on Friday January 22nd 1909 for a cruise to the Mediterranean. It was moving through a thick cold fog in the vicinity of the Nantucket lightship when the captain, Inman Sealby, and his crew heard a foghorn booming through the darkness. An unknown ship was speeding in its direction. The two ships exchanged horn blasts, with the idea that each would turn to starboard away from each other, thus avoiding a collision. As the blasts of the other ship came nearer, the Republic reversed engines and stopped. Instead of turning away, the unknown ship ploughed on, right into the side of the Republic. Its bow tore a huge hole right down to the Republic's waterline and below. The bow crumpled, leaving an overhang that scraped across the Republic's main deck as the ship slid away to the Republic's stern, leaving a devastation of crumpled steel and tangled ropes in its wake.
Two people on the Republic were killed instantly, and a couple of others severely injured. On the other ship, the sailors who had been in the bow were also killed, a total of six lives lost immediately. With the death of one of the severely injured later, altogether seven people died. That was to be the total of lives lost in this accident!
Jack Binns was the radio operator on the RMS Republic and thrown out of his bunk, despite being dazed he immediately sprang into action. His wireless cabin badly damaged in the collision he managed to send the vital distress signal C..Q..D which was recognised across the world at the time.
Almost all of the crew and passengers were transferred to the Florida but Jack stayed and coordinated the rescue guiding the rescue vessel through the treacherous fog for an amazing 36 hours.
Jack Binns became a hero, and put himself firmly in the history books by being the first person to use a radio to save lives. This was completely over-shadowed in history by an event that took place several years later, the sinking of the Titanic. Jack was actually chosen as the radio operator for the Titanic but it was deemed by his employers to be unlucky to allow him to fulfil this task after the RMS Republic incident.
Jack became a Journalist and on the second day of his new job ended up reporting on the tragedy of the Titanic striking the iceberg.