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Norske tog are improving the on-board mobile coverage

This fall, Norske tog commence the installation of on-board mobile repeaters on the train sets operating on the Southern Railway, the Bergen Railway, The Dovre Railway and the Nordland Railway.


- The installation of 4G mobile repeaters in Norske togs Flirt-trains have resulted in better on-board coverage for the passengers, said Project Manager Rune Andreassen in Norske tog.

    Passengers have been waiting for an improved and more stable on-board mobile coverage for a long time. It is several factors causing the unstable mobile coverage. One factor is the un-developed mobile coverage alongside the railway and inside the railway tunnels. Another factor is the passenger coachwork that curbs the available signals outside the trains.

    These factors are a crucial part of the solution to ensure stable on-board mobile coverage, including calls and surfing. The goal is to improve the passenger offering.

    Norske tog collaborates with the telecom operators, Bane NOR and the Railway Directorate to improve the coverage stability for passengers. An important part of the solution is the supplier SiteService, who are delivering the mobile repeaters.

    Better than WiFi

    Norske tog owns and manages trains for the passenger train operators Go-Ahead, Vy Tog and SJ. In September, Norske tog commence the installation process on the Oslo-Stavanger, Oslo-Bergen and Oslo-Trondheim lines. The work will be ongoing during 2020 and will continue in 2021.

    Mobile repeaters have already been installed in the 20 Norwegian sleeping carriages.

    - Mobile repeaters catch signals outside train, repeats the signals and sends the signal back into the train as traditional on-board mobile coverage. This technical solution is better and more stable than a WiFi-solution, said Andreassen.

      133 carriages

      Norske tog is responsible for onboard mobile coverage on its trains, while telecom companies are responsible for the coverage alongside the railway tracks. Bane NOR is responsible for the signals inside tunnels. The on-board mobile coverage has significantly improved over the last couple of years, partly because the telecom operators have replaced old equipment with 4G equipment. The telecom operators have also enhanced their focus to coverage alongside the Railway tracks.

      Installation of on-board mobile repeaters in addition to the new 4G equipment will significantly improve the mobile coverage.

      - The installation process is time-consuming, as the relevant trains are currently in service. As SiteService needs to access the roof to install external antennas, the train sets must be taken out of service and placed at the garage for the installation process to be completed, said Andreassen.

        In total, Norske tog are now installing mobile repeaters in 36 train sets and 133 carriages. By 2022, all train sets on the Southern Railway, the Bergen Railway, The Dovre Railway and the Nordland Railway will have mobile repeaters installed.