Continuing to Support the Rail Industry

Continuing to Support the Rail Industry

dBD Communications continue to support the UK Rail Construction Industry with Wireless Duplex Communications


In 2011, dBD Communications received Network Rail Product Approval on their wireless duplex communication systems. 8 years on, and the business is still working with and supporting the industry, with both existing and new customers. 

Since this time, the product portfolio of the Athena and Apollo systems have vastly developed. Recently, McCulloch Rail returned a 7 year old Athena system.  These headsets only needed minor replacements such as mic muffs and ear cups with one headset requiring a new volume dial.  Also, on inspection it was found that these systems held over 28 hours of battery life when fully charged.  This, therefore proves the robustness and reliability of the duplex communication systems.

Continuing to Support the Rail IndustryThe Athena systems consist of a variety of 2 user solutions.  These include, Athena Standard provided with 2 slotted ear domes allowing for slight situational awareness; the Athena Blocked with 20dB hearing protection due to the closed ear domes; the Athena Lighter providing maximum situational awareness, as the left ear dome has hollowed slots; the Athena Ultra-Light is a clip-able dome solution removing the headset band, and giving the ability to clip the domes onto any type of hard hat and finally, the Athena Freedom which is the light weight solution positioned comfortably on the back of a hard hat or forced air mask, this system gives the maximum situational awareness out of all the headset variants. 

Continuing to Support the Rail IndustryThe Athena systems are not all headset solutions.  With the ability to work hands free whilst operating plant machinery, the Athena Cab Kit system is most suitable.  A speaker box is fitted either permanently or temporarily into the cab area of the machine with a sucker cup microphone placed on the window area of the cab, whilst retaining communication with the Controller outside of the cab whom would be wearing the appropriate Athena headset.  This gives an open mic solution during operation and increases safety awareness and is the maximum solution for situational awareness across the whole product portfolio.

Another alternative to the Athena Cab Kit is the Water Resistant Cab Kit system more suitable for operations utilising MEWP’s.  This portable solution is placed within a water resistant rucksack, with the microphone clipped in the appropriate area on the MEWP platform.  The speaker is loud enough within this system so that those working on the platform are able to communicate efficiently with the Controller on the ground, again whom would be utilising the suitable Athena headset type.  

The Apollo variants consist of a 3 user system known as Apollo Phantom, where 3 headsets have the ability to communicate simultaneously; the 4 user Apollo Flight Bag and the 8 User Apollo Waterproof.  The 4 user system utilises a small bag in order to connect the 4 headsets together, whilst the 8 user system utilises a larger carry case, which will need to be placed around the middle area of operations with antennas attached to increase the range of communication. Note that these systems do not require a minimum amount of users, a multiple user system can be adapted to the needs of the operation.  Users can be increased within any of the Apollo systems, by daisy-chaining or utilising a phantom together with a normal Apollo system, increasing the headsets linked to the system.

Further enhancements have been made incorporating duplex communications within Respiratory Masks by dBD Communications to enhance safety in these dangerous types of environments.  This therefore increases the team awareness when struggling to see around them in dusty and contaminated areas. 

An important element not to forget is that dBD Communications provide additional services.  These services consist of:

Continuing to Support the Rail IndustryManaged Service; providing 24 hour first line technical support and equipment control for back-to-back shifts, ensuring equipment readiness, cleanliness and charged state and also ensuring accountability and traceability of communication systems.

Servicing of equipment; there are 2 types of services, a short service and a deep service, both of which provide a full system functionality check, complete clean and relabelling and the deep service includes a battery replacement as well as an additional year’s re-warranty.

Repairing of equipment; whether owned by dBD Communications or an alternative supplier, repairs can be carried out on any type of communication system varying from headsets to radios etc.  An inspection is carried out prior to the repair in order to provide an accurate quotation.

All wireless duplex communication systems mentioned are able to be purchased or hired and some have the ability to be interfaced with a radio.  The battery life of these solutions last up to 24 hours when fully charged.  The packaging has developed over the past few years with new hi-visibility bags, user manuals and a variety of chargers within.  As well as this, if users experience any issues or need further understanding on the products after delivery, this can be dealt with by contacting the office or a face to face visit with the Sales Executives. 

With the assistance from dBD Communications Sales Executives, support is given to adapt the product solution most suitable for the desired outcome relevant to the operations, whether this be bespoke or a slight assemble change to the systems provided.  

dBD Communications pride themselves on being customer focused, not only during the sales process, but after order delivery to ensure the products are being managed efficiently and if customers require any additional or technical enhancements to their operations.  

To find out more information on the wireless duplex communication portfolio please contact +44 (0)1268 724538 to speak with a member of the Sales Department.