OVERVIEW OF SALCOM SERVICES
Salcom's systems division specializes in the engineering of communications systems and products to meet the unique requirements of individual customers.
Using the range of standard Salcom communications, signalling and microprocessor products, Sigtec signalling and data products, and where necessary other manufacturer's products, systems are engineered, tested to customer specification and documented. This service provides unique, cost effective systems which can not be provided as off-the-shelf products from other sources. Where necessary systems can be integrated into existing computer and communications networks. If required, systems and engineering will modify existing hardware and/or software or develop new products to meet the demands of unique applications. Software Engineering: Salcom's software department is capable of developing software (and firmware) to provide customized solutions to consumer requirements and/or integration of Salcom systems into existing systems. This includes software imbedded in Salcom products or IBMTM PC based applications.
Hardware Engineering/Manufacturing: Where projected production quantities justify the cost of development, or where development is fully financed by the customer (such as in a large system requiring a specialised product(s)), Salcom has the engineering capability to develop Radio Frequency (RF), signalling, data and microprocessor products to specification. Where such products are not system elements, but unique products required by another manufacturer, these products can be badged with the customer brand name if required. Salcom has years of experience in the design and manufacture of OEM products which in many cases are badged and exported to overseas manufacturers.
INCORPORATING NEW TECHNOLOGY INTO OLD SYSTEMS: SALCOM has a great deal of experience incorporating new technology into old systems. For instance, in three recent systems we have interfaced the latest state-of-the-art equipment with electronics nearly thirty years old! A brief history of three such systems follows:
- Systems for a Railway Company
Remoting the Control Centre: When the Railway company wanted to shift its control section from an existing site to a metropolitan centre, they had the task of moving the train control display from the local site to a CAD (computer-aided dispatch) system on a PC situated 200 Kilometres away.Using Salcom's 10-56 rack-mounted V25-based Micro-controller board, and some custom built hardware for level conversion, we can adapt the 25 parallel connections to a protocol suitable for transfer via leased line and telephone modems. This unit also handles the fallback from the leased line to the PSTN line if the leased line fails.Remote Points/Lights Control: Working on the success of this system, the Rail company later asked us to provide conversion from the old field stations to the newer modem protocol required by the CAD at their metropolitan control centre for remote points and lights control. Using the same 10-56 Micro-controller, and another custom- built interface card, Salcom interfaced to the old base-band FM signalled data from the field station ring.After we installed this unit in the North Island, we received another request to do the same in the South Island - with a slight catch. The field station protocol changed between the two centres, so a simple software modification was required before identical hardware was installed in the South Island Control Centre.
- System for a Shipping CompanyThe same proven 10-56 technology was used in a wall-mounted case, in order to interface the ship's existing signalling system to the new paging system. Since the ship already had UHF transmitters which used multiple aerials and amplifiers, we decided to replace the first low-frequency transmitter stage and replace it with the protocol converter and a modified transmitter to send POCSAG. The existing system still thinks it's talking to the old receivers, and the pagers are now displaying full alphanumeric messages where the old receivers showed only numbers.Ship Paging System A slightly different system was required by a ship paging system used on a line of cargo ships. The very old paging receivers had become very unreliable, and replacements weren't available. After investigation to see how the old system worked, we decided to convert the system to modern POCSAG pagers while retaining as much of the existing equipment as possible.
The service department provides support for all Salcom, Sigtec and Omnitronics products and systems.