HF Advantages Over Satellite • Codan Communications

Codan’s second generation Digital Voice and software defined radio platform elevates HF technology beyond the capabilities, availability and clarity of satellite phone communications.

Problem

The competing adjacent technology to HF radios is satellite phones. While satellite, like HF, provides an option for communications in remote areas, the key differentiator has historically been one of voice quality over traditional analogue HF radio.

Your Codan Solution

With the introduction of the latest generation digital voice technology the capability gap between satellite and HF has closed up significantly. Digital voice over HF has a high clarity audio without any crackle or hiss, meaning the inexperienced operators can clearly hear what is being said and it can be digitally encrypted to ensure the highest level of operational security. Vocoding rates and, hence the voice quality, are equivalent to satellite communications. At 2400 bps the difference in quality is virtually indiscernible. For the first time HF can be directly compared with satellite communications for voice quality and security.

In addition to the audio clarity that HF provides, all voice traffic can be fully AES 256 encrypted and therefore an operator can freely discuss any operational matter without fear of breaching communications security (COMSEC).

Another attractive aspect of HF and a clear benefit over satellite services is that it offers OH&S safety compliance using GPS location services for deployed personnel operating in remote areas.

Key Benefits

  • Latest generation digital voice technology
  • OH&S safety compliance using GPS location service for deployed personnel operating in remote areas
  • No ongoing costs and all data usage is free
  • Network ownership with complete insight and independent of third party infrastructure
  • Real time broadcast capability reducing delay
  • Ease of use for all radio operators

The standout difference to satellite technology is that HF has no ongoing costs and all data usage is free.

Complex situations often cannot be communicated by voice alone and hence HF provides the option to send images over the HF link to provide additional situational awareness. Unlike satellite, the data usage for image transfers is does not have an additional cost and is not restricted by data usage limits.

With HF networks, the owner or user has full ownership and hence not dependent upon third party infrastructure as with satellite communication. The control offered within a HF network also enables real time broadcast capability allowing the radios to be configured to a pre-set frequency which results in calls being negligible delay.

The availability of satellite phones is volatile compared to HF and they are renowned for their “dead” spots and service “drop outs”. The absence of base or mobile stations for back up makes it virtually impossible to communicate in case of an emergency. On the other hand, HF radios with digital voice capability have been proven to provide a communications link even in the most challenging environments and conditions. The combination of HF and VHF on a communications network increases coverage strength by providing VHF PTT communications for short-range transmission and HF over long distances.

On a service cost and setup comparison, HF has a relatively higher initial outlay. However, once setup, HF radio has no ongoing costs, unlike satellite phones, which require an ongoing monthly subscription fee. Furthermore, HF networks can be connected to emergency providers to provide one-touch emergency response to the users’ location, without any additional cost.

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