• Cableways security
  • France
  • RipEX, 160 MHz
  • Flexible protocol
  • Czechia
  • RipEX2, 400 MHz
  • Base driven protocol

The versatility and features of RACOM’s RipEX radio modems have proven to be key in providing improved security in mountain transportation.

In the Rhone-Alps region of France, the operators of Saint-Hilaire du Touvet funicular railway were looking to install a ‘positive’ security system.  The railway links Montfort in the valley with the village of Saint-Hilaire du Touvet, some 600 metres higher in the mountains and is perhaps best known for transporting competitors and spectators into the mountains each summer for the Icarus Cup, a major festival of free flight.

The key issue to be overcome for reliable communications? – the funicular route contains two blind bends and a tunnel! Of all the technologies considered, only RipEX was able to provide a signal 100% of the time between each train and the control centre; all because of the sensitivity of RipEX!

One device is fitted to each funicular train with another fixed device on the ground acting as the base station. Every two seconds each RipEX in the trains send a frame to the base station saying “OK”. The whole system and trains are stopped if any device sends an alarm or fails to receive the “OK” frame every two seconds.

The frequency used is 169.4 MHz, a license free band if data transmissions take up less than 1% of the time. In this situation this can be achieved because RipEX has a high data rate; sending a frame only takes a few milliseconds even when Flexible protocol and packet acknowledgement are used.


Czech Republic
Meanwhile, in Horní Hanychov , Liberec in the North of Czech Republic, Easy Control Morava who operate a gondola system to transport tourists to the top of Ještěd mountain, a famous landmark in the region offering views into Germany and Poland, were also looking at security.

In order to provide improved levels of security and safety on the two gondolas, a second independent communication system was required to provide communications between the control centre and the gondola drivers. Different technologies were tested but only RipEX could offer the levels of reliability required for this application.

The driver of each gondola communicates with the PLC. The PLC operates as a control to force an emergency stop if there is an issue with either driver. This TCP/IP application uses RipEX2 at 400 MHz using Base Driven protocol and 16DEQAM modulation.

Good communication and cooperation between clients and RACOM’s support engineers ensured installation and commissioning of both applications ran smoothly.

Both clients are very happy with the increased levels of security they can now offer on their respective transportation systems.


  • RipEX, 400 MHz
  • Overhead transport management
  • Moving Installation
  • TCP/IP
  • Base Driven Protocol
  • FEC
  • Flexible rod antennas

The ZPSV s.r.o. company, based in the Czech Republic, manufactures concrete products for the building industry, specialising in transport structures for railways and other ground works. The company started producing the first reinforced concrete sleepers, now used globally, as far back as 1955.

Their plant in Uhersky Ostroh, Czech Republic has three manufacturing halls. During the manufacturing process, equipment is transported between the halls using carts on an overhead transport system. Movement of the carts is managed by communication between the carts and a central control system.

With the introduction of new powerful engines to the manufacturing processes over time, interference levels increased substantially. As a result the original Power Line Communication became unreliable and a replacement needed to be found. The search was on to find a communication system that could withstand the high levels of interference and ensure reliable and efficient management of the carts’ movements between the manufacturing halls.

RipEX was selected for tests and was set up using TCP/IP with Base Driven Protocol managing the communications. FEC was also switched on to achieve optimal, error free communication. Initial tests used a dipole antenna. Unfortunately this did not fit in the passage so was replaced by flexible rod antennas in the final configuration without having any negative affect on communications.

The entire test took place during the quarantine period of Covid 19 with RACOM support engineers able to assist remotely to configure the entire installation. This consists of one fixed central radio near to the control room and three on the wagons in a moving installation.

The customer is very satisfied with the solution and has already ordered equipment to expand the network to cover the remaining manufacturing hall.



  • RipEX, 400 MHz & RAy, 10 GHz
  • Traffic flow management
  • RAy for backbone to base stations
  • Sleep and Save modes
  • Mixed TCP and UDP
  • Polling and Report-by-exception
  • Over 100 remote sites

Brno is the second largest city in Czech Republic and is the regional capital of Moravia. Brněnské komunikace a.s. [BKOM] was founded January 1, 1995. It is responsible for administration and maintenance of roads in the city: key responsibilities include limiting access to the old town, managing car parking facilities within the city centre and monitoring and managing traffic flows throughout the city.

RACOM has worked with BKOM since 2006, providing networks to enable controlled access for deliveries and emergency vehicles to parts of the old town using retracting bars controlled via a radio network. In 2008 the network infrastructure was extended to display availability of free parking spaces in car parks on electronic information boards.

With ever increasing numbers of vehicles on the roads, the city now experiences varying levels of traffic congestion within the city limits. Levels of congestion change constantly with no clear reason for the build up at any one time or in any one place. Monitoring and managing traffic flows would assist in provision of efficient public transport systems, assist future traffic planning and enable data to be made available for public access to provide best routes and estimated transit times across the city.

Having the opportunity of EU funding to support a directive to alleviate traffic congestion, BKOM asked RACOM for their support. Our remit was to perform a complete propagation analysis, design and implement a solution to connect over 100 traffic detectors to the control centre using SCADA networks, to include commissioning and configuring of the network.

Three RipEX star networks, each with a base station provide city wide coverage. RAy microwave links provide backhaul connectivity from base stations with the information centre.

Commenting on the schematic design chosen, Racom’s Head of Technical Support said, “The unique functionality of RipEX allows the same frequency to be shared between base stations. This enabled installation using less hardware and also reduced the number of frequencies required for efficient operation of the network.”

The installation also uses existing infrastructure, minimising installation costs and time constraints to gain planning permissions. Remote RipEX devices operate with a smart power source; mounted on street lights they operate using a Save mode offering further savings.”

Since coming into operation, BKOM representatives have noted how effective the UHF band is for penetration in urban areas and are delighted with the excellent sensitivity and robustness of connection stability shown by RipEX.


  • MR400, 160 MHz, Integrated GPS
  • Train fleet & crossing zones management
  • Remote desert installation, +50 °C
  • Multiple Ethernet and Serial applicatons
  • Mobile roaming protocol on Radio channel
  • 180 km single track railway
  • 3 repeaters for inclusive coverage

Ferronor operate rail freight services in Northern Chile over 1800 km of private one track railway.Heaviest traffic movements are between an Iron ore mine across the Atacama Desert to a port on the Pacific coast. With increased production, the manual management of the remotely controlled freight trains on this track became unsuitable for the increased number of freight movements. An automated system was needed that could provide high levels of reliability in the severe climatic conditions experienced in this remote wilderness.

A thorough examination of available products on the market revealed the best solution would be achieved using MR160 radio modems integrated with GPS in order to allow centralized coordination for desolate crossing zones on the one-track railway, in a non-fixed itinerary scheme for mining convoys. Support for locomotive conductors informing distances to the nearest trains ahead and behind, the next singularities in the route, text messages to and from the control centre, etc. are all combined within this application.

A unique RACOM mobile protocol with automatic roaming among bases stations (repeaters) is used. Only three repeaters are needed, strategically placed at dominant points in the hilly terrain, in order to minimize their numbers while having good coverage footprint in 160 MHz band over the entire length of the 180 km long railway. One frequency channel is used for communication among locomotives and repeaters and also between repeaters and the main base station. The second frequency is used for communication between the main base station and the centre.

Key features proved to be:

  • Transparent route change for messages to/from mobiles transmitted through repeater stations
  • A multiple communications path environment through Ethernet and serial ports
  • Versatility to perform as a mobile end communications device, repeater, base and main centre communications server
  • Multiple communication protocols allowing system integration of specific proprietary applications

After the network had been completed, Ferronor representatives openly stated that RACOM support was a fundamental part of the project’s success, from the initial selection of the optimal modem model, to selecting the best locations to install repeaters, configuration recommendations of MR160 parameters and remote testing of operations and performance.

Since commissioning, the network has allowed seamless, centralized coordination of desolate crossing zones in the one-track railway in the non-fixed itinerary scheme for mining convoys and support for locomotive conductors. Additionally it informs distances to other freight movements and passing places and direct communications with the control centre.

Such has been the success of this project, another was commissioned in the North of Chile. Both networks have helped the customer increase safety for personnel, the rolling stock and provide efficient management of freight movements.


  • Casi 100 trenes
  • 25 Estaciones Base
  • Banda de 400 MHz
  • 1 Canal simplex de 12.5 KHz
  • Cables radiantes

El sistema MORSE también es ideal en aplicaciones en las cuales la demanda de la seguridad y confiabilidad en la transmisión de datos desde y hacia los trenes es fundamental.

En la ciudad Portuguesa de Porto, los Radio Módems de RACOM se comunican tan confiablemente en el interior de los túneles así como en los exteriores

  • IP sobre SDH para conectar las Estaciones Base
  • Uso de cables radiantes especiales en las zonas subterráneas del metro.
  • Red de backbone redundante para asegurar máxima confiabilidad.
  • La red MORSE permite la transferencia de datos para:
    • Determinar la ubicación de los trenes
    • Mensajería (desde el Centro de Control hacia el Conductor)
    • Estado del tren

©  2024 RACOM s.r.o. All Rights Reserved.