South African antenna technology used in world’s longest train tunnel

The Gotthard Base Tunnel, the world’s longest and deepest train tunnel in the Swiss Alps, makes use of South African antenna technology from Poynting Antennas.

The Poynting antennas are part of a network which ensures a seamless digital communication service runs over a route of more than 57km.

The R130-billion Gotthard Base Tunnel project was completed recently and consists of two single-track tunnels connecting Switzerland with Italy. It is part of the New Railway Link through the Alps.

“For the pan-European project team to choose our antenna, the XPOL 2 v2, as part of their communications network in the tunnel is significant,” said Poynting CEO Michael Howard.

The XPOL 2 v2 antenna is 4G/LTE and 2G/3G compatible, and is capable of operating over a wide frequency range that caters for the requirements of the many network operators in different countries.

“Many competitors have either-or scenarios, but not a versatile antenna that is as robust as ours,” said Howard.

With up to 250 trains per day passing through the tunnel at speeds of up to 200km/h, engineers and tunnel operators must be able to rely on a seamless and uninterrupted communications service to manage the traffic.

“Our XPOL 2 v2 was specifically developed with this in mind. The radome is made of the same vandal and water-resistant material used in our other antennas.”

Howard said Poynting was confident the high-performance LTE antenna will operate flawlessly in temperatures as low as -40 degrees Celsius, making it perfect for the weather experienced in Switzerland during the winter months.

Now read: How Poynting is beating its international competitors

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South African antenna technology used in world’s longest train tunnel