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Overview of Communication System

A combination of PCM and Ethernet based communication systems together with an extensive optical and microwave network, link the operational control centre to the rest of the range infrastructure. Mobile microwave links enable the deployment of range instrumentation at remote/unprepared sites.

The communication infrastructure supports the following:

  • Real-time data transfer between range instrumentation and the operational control centre
  • Range wide operational intercom system with monitoring facilities at each station in the control centre (pre-selected work nets)
  • Range wide telephone system that provides access to local and international calls
  • Range wide public address system
  • Transfer of video images from the range instrumentation to the control room, for display purposes
  • Recording of selected audio and video channels
  • Playback of video in the control room
  • Distribution of the time synchronisation (IRIG-B)
  • Transfer of radar data via redundant communication lines for safety displays
  • Real-time RS232 data interface to client systems for target designation (state vector) (VRDIS)

Transmission Network

An extensive network consisting of fibre optics and microwave provides the real-time communications between the control centre, the central computer and deployed instrumentation. The network supports the transmission of:

  • Real-time data to and from the Central Computer
  • Video images from tracking systems
  • Intercom, public address and telephones
  • IRIG-B time base data
  • Ethernet based data communication

Time Base

The central time base system is based on a GPS synchronised Frequency Standard with derived UTC time. This is a fully redundant system that generates IRIG B for distribution to the various instrumentation systems and Range control centre via the Range communication infrastructure. Each instrumentation system has a time code generator that is synchronised with the time base system, which will function independently in the case of a communication failure. The time base signal also provides for real-time countdown time and event control throughout the Test Range.

All Test Range measurements and data recordings are synchronized (IRIG-B) with an accuracy better than 15 micro sec. The Range time base is synchronized to UTC with accuracy better than 1 micro sec.

Radio and Intercom

The Test Range and surrounding area is well covered with a two-way radio network and access via the intercom system from the control room. Mobile phone (GSM) coverage is also available. Maritime and ground-to-air radios provide communication to participating ships and aircraft.

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+27 28 445 2000
Arniston Road, Arniston Bredasdorp, RSA
Private Bag X12, Bredasdorp, 7280, RSA

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