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Innovation activity to develop technologies to enable a pan-European interoperable broadband mobile system for PPDR, validated by sustainable testing facilities

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - BroadWay (Innovation activity to develop technologies to enable a pan-European interoperable broadband mobile system for PPDR, validated by sustainable testing facilities)

Reporting period: 2019-03-01 to 2020-10-31

The BroadWay project will take the first procurement steps to enable ‘Operational Mobility of responders by delivering the next generation of broadband radio communication systems for public safety and security’ to improve Public Safety and Disaster relief organisation’s (PPDR’s) service to Europe’s citizens, and enhance interoperability across borders.
This project implements a Pre-Commercial Procurement (PCP) with the purpose to realise innovative solutions for the implementation of the ‘SpiceNet Reference’ architecture as defined by the BroadMap project.
A pan-European pilot system will be developed within the timeframe 2022 that will be evaluated to the satisfaction of a European wide team of public safety practitioners.
The BroadWay partnership is comprised of 11 buyers in 11 countries, who represent the organisations with responsibility for transition to broadband for Public Safety Communication within their country. All buyer partners are from EU member states. Our buyers represent the operation of public safety communication for 1.4Million public safety practitioners in their respective countries.
During the 1st 10months of the project activity focused toward the preparation of the request for tender which was published on 19th February 2019.
Preparation included:

- Open Market Consultation
- Preparation of Request for Tender
- Formation of the Practitioner Evaluation Team (PEVT)
--- Practitioners attended a meeting held on 23rd January 2019 to discuss the first steps towards Practitioner Evaluation of the procured pilot system. 27 practitioners from 16 countries were represented.

- Sustainability Team (ST)
--- The first meeting was convened on 23rd January to initiate discussion toward future procurement and governance of BroadWay solutions.

- Standardisation
--- Representation in a number of 3GPP meetings to raise awareness in preparation for later requirements to influence the standards.

- Dissemination - many communication activities. Website, social media, etc.
The State of the art currently reflects that only a small number of countries are already using broadband ‘rich media’ services for non-critical public safety operations, and that many countries are preparing for a transition to mission critical broadband for PPDR. International activity in this area, both procuring governments and industrial suppliers, are preparing for a global swell in the transition to broadband for public safety.
Each individual European country is largely working alone, solving the problems for their own country. BroadWay will bring those key actors to work together for, what is essentially, a common goal. The BroadMap project has already successfully brought these countries together. Evidence indicates that countries working together on this topic, to share experiences, has increased as a result. However, each country’s own transition remains a primary national concern.

- Interoperability from the start – not as an afterthought
No European country is yet fully operational with mission critical broadband for PPDR. Transition to broadband for each country will occur at different times, likely within the next 10 years. The timing of the BroadWay project is ideal in the sense that we bring the key European actors in each country to work together in the early phases of their transition planning.

- Test and Conformance
BroadWay will procure technical capability to test and evaluate solutions to the problem of European Interoperable broadband for public safety. Test processes and acceptance criteria will be defined and refined throughout the project.

- Standardised and Conformant Technological Solutions – Enhanced standards
All BroadWay solutions shall be standardised. I new solutions are offered, they must be standardised before final procurement of the live TRL9 system after BroadWay.

- Efficiency and minimisation of duplicated effort
The BroadMap project has been living proof that those key actors working towards individual country transitions to broadband really do gain benefit from working together with their equivalent actors in other countries.

- Common Problem solving
Technology solutions…
• …used in each country will be interoperable
• …will become more technically mature, catalysed by PCP activity
• …will become lowest cost, due a richer and competitive supplier eco-system
• …will not be locked into individual suppliers
• …will provide efficiency gains to and not provide hindrance to PPDR operations

- Cross Sector and International harmonisation
It is imperative that we work together and liaise with other users of mission critical broadband to avoid any deviation in the way that mission critical broadband is implemented. This in turn increases the number of users, lowers costs, and leads to a richer marketplace for mission critical broadband.

- Innovative Lifecycle
In a world where the public replace their mobile phones every 2 years, and mobile operators continually evolve their infrastructure through 3G, 4G and 5G in 7-8 year cycles, innovation is continually made available within short timeframes, without significant ‘one-off’ investments.

- Innovative Mission Critical Solutions
Procured solutions will reach at least a limited set of 3GPP Release 15 mission critical services, made available for cross border and long distance operation for practitioners participating into final pilots.

- Operational Mobility
Our Practitioner evaluation Team (PEVT) will seek to identify operational interoperability challenges during their preparation for evaluating the final BroadWay pilot system.

- Innovation eco-system
Funding for prototype developments is a catalyst for new innovative solutions which will be validated as, for ready to market, during final pilot.

- Pan-European broadband pilot enabling Operational Mobility
Mission Critical broadband services developed in BroadWay will be subject of a pan-European pilot system that will be evaluated by practitioners representing a wide geographical and disciplinary coverage of Europe, including but not limited to police, fire, emergency medical response, coastguard, border control, etc.

- Turning the tables on requirements and conformance
Two major paradigm changes will occur because of BroadWay. These assure both the initial and ongoing innovation for the benefit of public safety operation:
1. End User driven requirements and pre-commercial procurement of innovation. The BroadMap project carried out the largest end user validation activity ever regarding the needs of broadband communication for public safety in Europe. This was followed by the definition or candidate solutions and transition roadmaps, all defined by public safety practitioners and potential buyers. No input from industry was made. Pre-Commercial procurement in BroadWay takes its lead from this work and will procure innovation only within the interests of public safety end use.
2. End User driven conformance of finally procured solutions. BroadWay intends to form a sustainable activity beyond the project to handle procurement of the innovative solutions that are developed within the BroadWay pre-commercial procurement. Procurement will only be made based on the satisfaction of our buyers team which represents a significant breadth of interest across the European Public Safety practitioner community. This end use team therefore defines how to determine conformance to their needs.
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