TIM Does Railway GSM

TIM scores deal to enable passengers to use mobiles in tunnels and , in general, optimize coverage of cellular signals along the entire Italian railway system

October 14, 2003

2 Min Read

ROME -- A cooperation agreement has been stipulated between TIM and RFI, the company responsible for the infrastructure of the Group Ferrovie dello Stato. The multi-year agreement will enable TIM, by means of the installation of dedicated masts, to optimise the coverage of its own GSM network (900 MHz band) and allow its customers to use their mobiles in tunnels (where RFI is installing equipment to amplify the radio signal) and over the entire railway network.

The cooperation agreement, furthermore, provides for national roaming on the RFI's GSM-R network (on December 2002, RFI was assigned a GSM-R mobile radio licence by the Ministry of the Communications, where R stands for Railway). The GSM-R architecture is similar to that of the public GSM networks and with respect to which the GSM-R can be easily interconnected. Negotiations are also in progress with other mobile telephone operators.

RFI has simultaneously launched a project to extend (by 2006) the signal of the GSM-R, the network exclusively dedicated to railway requirements, over the entire 7,500 km of the main lines and nodes, including tunnels, and on the about 800 km of the new high-speed/ high-capacity lines (Milan-Naples and Turin-Venice sections). By the end of the year the radio coverage in the tunnels between Bologna and Naples will be completed.

With the installation of radio repeaters (in stations and along railway lines) the GSM-R system, which transmits throughout the whole of Europe on the 900 MHz frequency reserved to railway companies, will not only bring about an improved and constant contact between travelling and fixed personnel (service communications and emergency management), but also provide for the transmission of data and information between technological and signalling systems by means of a single interoperable communication standard for the various European railway operators. From the perspective of the integration of European railway traffic, the new system will facilitate cross-border operations for trains using the various European railway networks.

The on-board instrumentation of Italian trains, thanks to a single European protocol, will also be able to interpret data transmitted over foreign railway networks.

Telecom Italia Mobile SpA

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