Emergency Preparedness

PANCOM

The Panhandle Regional Interoperable Communication System (PANCOM) is a state-of-the-art VHF repeater infrastructure that consists of a network of 52 tower sites interconnected by microwave radio to provide the 26-counties region-wide P25 standards-based communications. In addition to VHF communications, the PANCOM microwave system also provides backup communication services, patching ability and rerouting capability for the regions 911 PSAPs. The PANCOM system is managed by the PRPC on behalf of its 88 city and county member jurisdictions.

More Information  |   Map of PANCOM System  |  

Contact Information


Shane Brown

Regional Emergency Communications & Preparedness Programs Manager
Email: sbrown@theprpc.org
Phone: (806)372-3381
Fax: (806)373-3268

Reeves Easley-McPherson

Regional Emergency Communications Program Coordinator/Information Technology Coordinator
Email: reasley@theprpc.org
Phone: (806)372-3381
Fax: (806)373-3268



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PANCOM SYSTEM DESCRIPTION

Panhandle Regional Interoperable Communication System (PANCOM) is a state-of-the-art VHF repeater infrastructure that will, when complete, replace over one hundred county-level Public Safety dispatch radio channels in the 26-county Panhandle region of Texas with P25 standards-based communications. While fundamentally an operability system, PANCOM’s robust inter-site networking and console patching features will provide mutual aid interoperability that is significantly superior to the legacy infrastructure that it replaces.

Based on The EF Johnson IP25 conventional architecture, the 130 PANCOM repeaters and 60 PANCOM dispatch consoles are being tied together with a secure private IP network that enables several features usually associated with more expensive trunking systems:

  • Simple routine console patching of law enforcement, fire service, EMS, and Emergency Management communications in-county and with adjacent counties
  • Simple provision of fall-back dispatch console facilities at other PSAPS in the event a PSAP or dispatch facility is made unusable through fire, flood, or storm
  • Limited wide-area communications throughout the Panhandle using VHF subscriber radios for regional talk groups
  • Remote repeater health monitoring, alarms, firmware upgrades, and problem diagnosis from a central network operations center (NOC) and from PANCOM contracted service shops
  • Simplified implementation of cross-band UHF and 700/800 Interoperability channels when needed
  • Integration of legacy channels during PANCOM build-out and migration of agencies to narrowband analog PANCOM channels

The PANCOM system plan incorporates three features that augment the fixed-site conventional repeater infrastructure:

  • One PANCOM Site-on-Wheels (SOW) with trailer-mounted 3-channel PANCOM zone subsystem and crank-up tower to provide for site loss due to tornado or wildfire (considered a significant risk in the Panhandle region)
  • Two PANCOM Cross-Band Mobile Communications System trailers to provide satellite and crossband repeater communications when requested by Incident Commanders. These MCS trailers will provide all-band interoperability on site for large incidents requiring resources from distant agencies that may be equipped with UHF or 700/800 MHz band subscribers equipment.
  • Provision for up to thirty-nine fixed-site 4-band Calling Channel Repeaters that provide VCALL10, UCALL40, 7CALL50, and 8CALL90 calling channel functionality at all PANCOM dispatch consoles and mobile command centers.

PANCOM system development began in late 2004 with a comprehensive Needs Analysis that illustrated a compelling need for replacement and modernization of an aging legacy infrastructure that was in serious need of replacement and rationalization. Eight years later, 40 of 42 three-channel Zone Subsystems have been installed at fixed sites, and inter-site networking and console installations are underway.

Assuming continued funding from the State Homeland Security Grant Program, substantial completion of PANCOM (with all networking, console, and migration efforts complete) is expected in mid-2013.



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