Fire Appliance Communications

Overview

Brochure                 Application Note

The Firefront™ Universal Appliance Communications System allows up to seven X10DR Elite devices to be connected to the Fire appliance host mobile radio to provide a comprehensive, local intercom and network access system for firefighters.

Specifically, it allows the vehicle’s Commander to decide at any time which team members listen to what radio traffic and who can talk over the radio channel/s.

Typical systems provide local at-scene, off-network private AES secure communications with the ability to also monitor and transmit over the vehicle’s main despatch mobile radio for up to 700 meters from the vehicle.

Additional facilities include the ability to monitor other radio channels (e.g. volunteers using UHF radios) or the ability for multiple vehicles to link together into larger work teams with a shared local intercom network.

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Local Handsfree Full Duplex

All team members usually communicate with each other locally by pressing the top-mounted Talkaround button on the Elite Plus handset. For those situations where both hands are needed such as attaching a hose, the system also provides handsfree full-duplex mode.

Handsfree mode is simply enabled by “double-pressing” the Talkaround button. The user will hear a “handsfree” activation tone and a periodic reminder tone and the handset LED color will change to purple.

If the user needs to immediately talk over the host mobile radio then they simply press the handset radio PTT but and talk. That easy.

Once activated, the “handsfree” user can then communicate freely with others from their team while focusing on the task at hand without the need to press any buttons.

Should an Emergency be triggered either manually by the user, or via the Mandown Biometric alarm the handset reverts immediately to whatever Emergency protocol has been pre-configured into the vehicle’s X10DR system.

To deactivate the user simply short presses their Talkaround button.

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Command and Control

The XCCP Console Command Panel is normally located inside the vehicle cabin so user access can be pre-defined before arriving at the response scene. On power up the system is normally configured to typically allow full radio system access to the vehicle’s Commander, and/or a 2IC if so desired.

Depending on the specific operational needs and equipment configuration, either one or both selectable user sub-groups (2 or 3 members) can be authorized access to the vehicle’s radio/s by the Commander with a press of a button on the XCCP Console Command Panel.

When a team member has radio monitor access assigned, they will hear both local intercom voice traffic as well as the assigned radio’s receive audio. When authorized they can also transmit over the assigned radio channel by simply pressing the large side PTT button to talk.

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Out Of Vehicle Coverage

All communications between the X10DR Elite handsets occurs via their specific paired XRTG roof-mounted gateway units and not directly between handsets ( except in Relay Mode), so depending on location, communication between handsets could be over 1000 meters while communication back to the gateway device in the vehicle could be up to 700 meters.

The effective maximum range of the system is significantly dependent on the location of the XRTG gateway installation and the location where the X10DR handset is actually worn by the user.

Obstruction to antennas will affect the directivity of coverage so the utmost care must be taken when selecting a mounting location when the maximum range is a system imperative.

Elite Plus Relay Mode allows the handset to communicate up to another 250m via an in-range other team member’s handset when they have lost coverage with their assigned gateway. Additionally, handsets can be configured to automatically connect with each other to allow local communications even when paired units are out of range of their associated gateway.

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Installation Ease

The XFSB Firefront Smart Box connects up to three Elite Plus XRTG roof-mounted gateways to the host mobile radio, and if desired a secondary mobile. The XCCP Console Command Panel allows the Commander to assign who can monitor and who can talk on either of the connected mobiles. A typical configuration may provide for six X10DR Elite handsets, one for the Commander and two handsets for subgroup A and another three handsets for subgroup B.

To further simplify installation, an external mount XFSB-EXT Firefront Smart Box is available to simplify wiring providing a single flat Interface cable connection to the vehicle’s host mobile radio and the XCCP unit.

To further simplify installation time 3 Way (X3MK) and a  2 Way (X2MK) charger mounting kit is available for handsets XMVC mobile chargers. All mounting kits are also available with built-in battery backup for vehicles that are stored with isolated 24/12volt batteries so that the Elite Plus handsets are fully charged and ready for their next deployment. Alternatively, six-way desktop chargers are available for charging the handsets back at the fire station.

X1ODR Elite Firefront

Headsets – Handsfree Operation

The Elite Plus handsets should always be in the shoulder area to not only ensure maximum radio range. To ensure optimum voice transmission quality in the handsfree mode as a minimum an earpiece receiver should be worn.  In some situations, it may be preferable to attach the lightweight Elite Plus handset directly onto the user’s helmet especially when used with a headset.

For optimum performance use of the WPHFH-X10 noise-canceling lightweight or a WPATH-X10 Acoustic Tube headset are suggested for sid by side feedback-free handsfree operation. In those situations where breathing apparatus is required, a large surface area, in-line PTT button accessory is available to allow plug-in connection to audio equipped Draeger protective facemasks. (contact us for other manufacturer types).

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In-to-Building Range Extension

The battery-powered, IP67 rated, suitcase Elite Plus X10DR–RPTR allows enhanced operational range away from the vehicle by its select deployment to extend coverage in-to-buildings or beyond those obstacles preventing dependable communications. X10DR Suitcase RPTR’s are available to support up to 6 users.

The Elite Plus RPTR should be deployed so as to provide the desired remote operational coverage area while also still located where it can reliably maintain connectivity with the host vehicle gateway. The X10DR Elite Repeater passes transmissions between the remote handsets and the vehicle-mounted gateway unit.

All handsets continue to hear each other and can communicate via PTT or handsfree with each other. All user handsets will have identical network access rights as defined by the XCCP Command Console settings for the gateway linked to the Elite Plus RPTR.

Handsets are paired with both the Elite Plus RPTR and their individual XRTG gateway. Handsets when out or range of the vehicle will automatically connect with the in-range RPTR. Prior to deployment, the Elite Plus RPTR is paired with a designated  Firefront gateway.

X1ODR Elite Firefront Repeater