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Raytheon and Twisted Pair Solutions Unveil Next-Generation Dispatch Center

Raytheon Company and Twisted Pair Solutions unveiled a next-generation dispatch system deployed for the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff (SLOCS) in California. This state-of-the-art dispatch center is one of the first in the nation to be purely IP-based and supports the use of smartphones and tablets for seamless first-responder critical communications, anywhere, on any device.

The SLOCS is the oldest and largest law enforcement agency in the county, with enforcement covering over 3,200 square miles and serving a population of 280,000 people. The Raytheon-provided solution uses the company’s industry-leading interoperability gateway to enable communications with San Luis Obispo County’s existing radio systems. The solution also incorporates Twisted Pair’s WAVE® Dispatch Communicator that turns a standards-based PC into a richly featured communications dispatch console. The WAVE® Mobile Communicator turns any Android™, Apple® iOS®, BlackBerry® and Windows Mobile® smartphone into a multi-channel land mobile radio (LMR) handset for secure, on-demand push-to-talk (PTT) communication. Police, fire and emergency rescue workers will now be able to communicate with each other on smartphones, tablets and even conventional two-way radios over any secure radio and WiFi network.

Twisted Pair’s patented WAVE software was integrated with Raytheon’s Next-Generation Interoperability Server (NGIS), allowing smartphones and tablets to securely connect to existing Land-Mobile Radio (LMR) infrastructure and enabling existing infrastructure to expand and securely transmit critical voice and data through the use of 4G/LTE devices. The new WAVE and NGIS integration for P25 augments the existing integration between WAVE and Raytheon’s ACU line of radio interoperability systems.

“Our partnering with Raytheon will deliver new, economical choices for law enforcement communications,” said Tom Guthrie, president and CEO of Twisted Pair. “Our Police and Fire customers want to use existing devices and networks so they can be included in conversations that today they can’t be due to the extremely high price of P25 radios.”

Sheriff Ian Parkinson, SLOCS, said he liked the Raytheon radio trailer when he saw it at a trade show. The department outfitted six full dispatch positions with the Raytheon/Twisted Pair solution. This also included replacing carpeting, furniture, foot pedals, microphones, etc. “The center was completely revamped in just six weeks,” explained Janet Holt, Project Manager for Raytheon. The agency operated with half of the dispatchers on the new system and half on the old until the transition was complete. “We’ve had no issues even when tested during a recent power outage,” Parkinson noted, “we didn’t miss a beat.” The staff at SLOCS has been very comfortable with the changeover as well.

“Raytheon has provided us with a next-generation dispatch system that bridges our existing radio system to the new capabilities of today’s smartphone and tablet technology, and FirstNet in the future,” Parkinson said. “Any concerns we had were quickly alleviated by Raytheon’s extremely responsive customer service and technical support... the transition was fantastic.”

According to Under Sheriff Tim Olivas, the department was cautious when selecting the new technology due to concerns about the environment since the Diablo Nuclear Power Plant is in their jurisdiction. Olivas said they liked the Portability of the Mobile Apps with the Raytheon and Twisted Pair system. “With our previous system, officers would find themselves out of reach of communication in some areas. It’s a definite plus now to receive radio traffic even when out of the county,” Olivas explained.

“The future is now. Thanks to Raytheon and Twisted Pair’s solution, SLOCS is already prepared for broadband and FirstNet,” stated Mike Bostic, Director of Customer Advocacy for Raytheon.

Published in Law and Order, Aug 2013

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