Microwave Journal

Swedish Radio Communication Network Rolls Out

January 4, 2011

The Swedish authorities’ nationwide TETRA network – RAKEL – which is provided by Cassidian, was rolled out on schedule in December 2010. The network offers user organizations the opportunity to cooperate fully on a national scale as they will no longer be limited by their radio networks.

The primary users of the shared RAKEL network are the police, coastguard, customs, rescue services, ambulance services and defense forces. In addition, other important community organizations, such as the Civil Aviation Administration and the Swedish Maritime Administration, can access the system in the event of exceptional incidents.

RAKEL was delivered by a consortium consisting of Saab, Cassidian and Eltel Networks contracted by the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB). Running over a period of five years, the project has delivered a robust radio communication system that consists of around 1,700 base stations and a number of switches, replacing 200 communications systems.

The components have been set up in places ranging from the very southern parts of Sweden all the way up to the northernmost regions. The final two of the project's seven phases incorporated the geographical areas of Jämtland, Västerbotten and Norrbotten, meaning that RAKEL is now in operational use throughout Sweden. It currently serves around 31,000 users, with that number forecast to rise to 70,000 within a few years.

Dirk Borchardt, Head of Security and Communication Solutions at Cassidian Systems, stated, “The original schedule and goals could only be reached with the concerted effort and good cooperation of all partners. The consortium has performed an excellent roll-out.”