Industrial Fire Journal - Fire & Rescue - Hemming Group Ltd
Sierra Wireless launches new high-speed vehicle networking solution for emergency services
Published:  10 June, 2016

Sierra Wireless has announced availability of the Airlink MP70, an LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) vehicle router for mission critical applications in public safety (police, fire, ambulance), public transportation and field services. Today’s mobile workforce needs to connect more technology in and around their vehicles to enhance safety and responsiveness.

‘The MP70 serves as a purpose-built, high-performance vehicle networking solution that enables multiple high-bandwidth applications to work simultaneously, more than 10 times faster and four times further from the vehicle than ever before. It also provides IT departments with the flexibility to manage fleet and mobile assets in the cloud or on-premises using Sierra Wireless Airlink Network Management solutions,’ said Jason Krause, senior vice president and general manager, Enterprise Solutions for Sierra Wireless. ‘

‘First responders and field services teams need access to uncompromised connectivity at all times, and that’s central to all of our LTE networking solutions. Using the MP70, mobile workers can communicate as seamlessly from in and around their vehicle as they could back at base. This allows them to perform critical duties onsite more efficiently, and ultimately respond more quickly in the field.’

For example, fire engines and other support vehicles increasingly carry multiple systems and applications that need connectivity inside and around vehicle such as  laptops and tablets, wearable cameras on fire fighters and for location and engine diagnostics.  With the MP70, all of these systems can connect to a high-speed vehicle area network, with both gigabit Ethernet and 802.11ac Wi-Fi, and share a secure cellular connection that enables the dispatcher to access all of the systems in real time. 

‘We trialed the MP70 router to connect our in-vehicle computers and provide a Wi-Fi hotspot for our team to access critical database records onsite in real time during emergencies,’ said Greg Katz, Lieutenant at Billerica MA Police Department. ‘Right out of the box, we were impressed by the MP70’s top-notch, ruggedised form factor—with hardened aluminium casing.  It’s clearly designed for turbulent vehicle environments. We are also very impressed with its reliable LTE connectivity and, because it offers 4-port Gigabit Ethernet, we will be able to support more in-vehicle equipment, such as video cameras and ALPR, bringing the full functionality of our office network to our patrol officers.’

An entire fleet of AirLink MP70 routers, field applications and mobile assets can be remotely managed, controlled and monitored over a centralized platform using AirLink Network Management solutions from Sierra Wireless. Available as a hosted, cloud-based service, or as a licensed software platform in the enterprise data center, AirLink Network Management solutions allow organizations to increase efficiency and lower maintenance costs by up to 90 percent.

The MP70 is the industry’s first router with a high performance vehicle area network accessible via Gigabit Ethernet, Gigabit Wi-Fi and 300 mbps LTE-A to connect multiple applications in and around the vehicle. It has an integrated events engine, built-in vehicle I/O and support for Airlink Vehicle Telemetry to enable advanced awareness and instant insight into vehicle diagnostics, connected mobile assets, fleet operations and the workforce. The MP70 also provides GNSS and inertial navigation (activated in an upcoming software release), enabling superior vehicle location accuracy, even when out of satellite coverage. Purpose-built for vehicles, the Airlink MP70 ensures superior reliability and continuous operation in harsh environments and is designed to survive extreme transient surges and perform in noisy vehicle power environments.

The list price for the MP70 is $1049 USD, which includes Airlink Management Service (ALMS) for three years with orders placed in 2016. The Airlink MP70 is commercially available today through Sierra Wireless’s authorised channel partners.