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Radio Communications for Emergency Responders in Large Public Buildings: Comparing Analog and Digital Modulation



Catherine A. Remley, Marc Rutschlin, Dylan F. Williams, Robert T. Johnk, Galen H. Koepke, Christopher L. Holloway, Mike G. Worrell, Andy MacFarlane


To assess in-building radio coverage, in 2004 the City of Phoenix Fire Department carried out extensive testing of their radio systems. They deployed firefighters in standard configurations in a variety of buildings, and rated on a scale of 1 to 5 the audio quality of the received signals. To provide a link between the qualitative ratings and absolute field strength, NIST staff later carried out a series of measurements side-by-side with the Phoenix firefighters. The calibrated data from the NIST tests enables translation of the larger set of Phoenix Fire Department data into transferable values useful to industry, standards organizations, and other public-safety groups. We report here on a subset of these tests that compare analog and digitally modulated signals at 800 MHz.
Proceedings Title
International Symposium on Advanced Radio Technologies
Conference Dates
March 7-9, 2006
Conference Location
Boulder, CO


communications receiver, digital modulation, public safety communications, telecommunications
Created March 7, 2006, Updated February 19, 2017