Interoperable Communications for Public Safety & First Responders

Network Innovations’ SATRAD solutions operate on the Ligado Networks network to provide 2-way push-to-talk radio communications across North America.  A value-add service provided on the Ligado Networks network are SMART talk groups, which facilitate interoperable communications between public safety agencies.

SMART (Satellite Mutual Aid Radio Talk groups) are nationwide and regional programs of public safety talk groups that operate on the Ligado Networks satellite network. These talk groups enable critical and interoperable communications amongst homeland security officials, law enforcement, emergency responders, and public safety officials from various departments and agencies across the United States.SATRAD Equipped Emergency Vehicle

Ligado Networks provides these talk groups without additional cost to existing public safety customers who subscribed to the Ligado Networks service.  SMART establishes federal, state, local, and tribal interoperability on a nationwide network at the national and regional level, and it’s all managed by federal, state, local agencies and one not-for-profit, the U.S. Earthquake Consortium.

SMART Features:

  • Pioneered by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the FBI in 2007
  • Operates on Ligado Networks ’s satellite communications network
  • Immune to terrestrial network congestion and destruction typically associated wit the PSTN; enables talk group members to communicate
  • Offers one-to-many, push-to-talk, ‘dispatch style’ communications
  • Ability to handle up to 9,999 users
  • Connects government and public safety agencies nationwide
  • Public safety personnel enrolled in one region are able to quickly join a region(s) outside their regular jurisdiction should the need arise
  • All 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico have access to at least one nationwide or regional SMART programs
  • SMART programs are made available ‘at no additional cost’ to existing Push-to-Talk (PTT) customers
  • SMART programs are providing federal, state, local, and tribal interoperability on a nationwide network at the national and regional level and are managed by Federal, state, and local agencies

How SMART Works to Provide Interoperable Communications

The Ligado Networks service operates based upon a concept of talk groups with mobile satellite radio systems (SATRAD G2) subscribed into a single or multiple talk groups.  Customers have their own talk groups to facilitate 2-way radio communications amongst their own staff for daily operations.  The SMART talk groups are separate from the customer’s primary talk groups and authorized public safety agencies are subscribed into SMART talk groups based upon their region of operations and discipline (e.g. fire, police, search & rescue).  This enables public safety agencies to establish interoperable communications for coordinating response between cooperating agencies.  The SMART talk groups provide the fastest and most cost effective way to establish interoperable communications between public safety agencies.

Nation-Wide SMART

  • J-SMART: a nationwide public safety talk group to facilitate communication among local, state, tribal and federal authorities during a crisis. Managed by: Department of Justice
  • NPHST 1 & 2: Public Health and Medical facilities nationwide. Managed by: Kentucky Department for Public Health
  • E-SMART: Government and Public Safety Agencies involved in Emergency Medical Services. Managed by: Department for Public Health
  • F-SMART: Government and Public Safety Agencies involved in Fire Services. Managed by: Charlottesville (VA) Fire Department
  • I-SMART: Government and Private sector Critical Infrastructure Agencies. Managed by: Seattle Public Utilities
  • L-SMART: Government and Public Safety Agencies involved in Law Enforcement. Managed by: United States Marshals Service
  • U-SMART: Urban Search & Rescue Entities. Managed by: Montgomery County (MD) Fire & Rescue Service

Contact Network Innovations for more details on the various SMART talk groups available and how to subscribed your agency to participate.

SMART Talk Group White Paper