[aprssig] Digital two-way Radio communication in emergency situations

SARTrack Admin info at sartrack.co.nz
Fri Sep 5 02:12:22 EDT 2014

Hi all,

As the CEO of SARTrack Limited, and developer of the SARTrack Search and 
Rescue software, I get occasionly approached by Emergency Services 
organisations who basically require a full two-way *radio* based 
tracking and communication system for teams in the field, in disaster 
situations where all other communication networks have failed or are out 
of range.

SARTrack Limited did build type-approved (non Amateur Radio) based APRS 
Trackers and Digipeaters, but we no longer do this.
While the SARTrack software can transmit Operation Logs and Objects over 
an APRS radio link, this is really not recommended, as the 1200 bps 
radio channel is simply not fast enough for that kind of work, and APRS 
is obviously not the right protocol for reliable two-way communication.

My question is this:
- What does currently exists in the area of affordable two-way, medium 
speed, digital radio equipment, which can be somehow connected to a user 
interface like maybe a smartphone or another device which enables 
display on a screen and entering data on a (digital) keyboard?

I start to wonder if it would be possible to develop a 'commercial' 
package which would make it possible to send people out in the field, on 
foot or vehicle, carrying a VHF radio based system like this, and using 
(portable) Digipeaters for same system to setup links to a remote base. 
  There is clearly a market for this, as 'hi-speed' satellite based 
systems are incredible expensive and probably more in the militairy 

The radio link speed would have to be at least 9600 bps, and it should 
preferably a full digital signal like PSK or QPSK or some other suitable 
digital modulation type.

Any ideas and information welcome.


Bart Kindt
SARTrack Limited

SARTrack Developer and CEO

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