BGI, Grantley Adams Airport – Barbados

Tait MPT 1327 at Grantley Adams International Airport (BGI).

BGI_GrantleyAdamsAirportRoadsideBGI_GrantleyAdamsArptnasaBGI_Check-inBGI_Concord_BarbadosMobile & Marine Systems Ltd. operates a Tait MPT-1327 system in Barbados. This 3 site UHF system provides a cost effective solution for mobile communication. In addition to the standard trunk features customers are pleased with the ability to be able to call individual units in their fleet without their company business being broadcast over the entire fleet. This increases the level of confidentiality for the users.

This Tait Trunked system has proved to be very popular with the users and management at the Grantley Adams International Airport and has considerably improved the efficiency of airport operations.  It has proved very popular with the airline and service providers at the airport who until this new Tait MPT 1327 system was installed found it difficult for the check-in counters to communicate with the gates.

The Tait MPT-1327 trunk system makes it possible for Mobile & Marine Systems Ltd. to use their spectrum allocation more efficiently.

The Grantley Adams International Airport (BGI) is the international gate way for Barbados and is a hub for several airlines servicing the islands of the Eastern Caribbean.  Every year 2.4 million passengers use the facility. The airport also handles air-sea transfers for passengers destined for the numerous cruise ships that sail the Caribbean Sea.  The Grantley Adams International Airport is also home to one of the Concorde aircraft.  When this aircraft was in service it made weekly flights from London to Barbados.

Until recently each airline used a mix UHF and VHF hand portable radios.  With no repeater service it was difficult for the check-in counter to communicate with the gates.  Calls had to be manually relayed by the base. Installing a base station was very expensive as running the antenna feeder to the roof was a major undertaking. There were also no radio communication between the various agencies operating at the Airport.

A new terminal is being built to meet the passenger needs for the next 15 years.  As this project entailed the renovation of the existing terminal and the construction of a new terminal for arrivals there was a lot of dislocation during construction.  Mobile & Marine Systems Ltd. was approached by GAIA Barbados Inc., the management company for the airport, to recommend an effective solution to solve the communication problems for the airline and service companies operating at the airport.

After looking at various options Mobile & Marine Systems Ltd installed a Tait MPT 1327 cell close to the airport.  This gives 100% coverage of the entire complex using Tait T5000 handheld radios.   The system operates in the 450 MHz band and in-building penetration is very good. There are no dead spots.  This cell uses the T800II modules with two traffic channels in addition to the control channel.  We expect to expand the traffic channels as more users come on.

Each airline was set up on a separate fleet and their radios are programmed for group calls.  Group calls are used as the staff was constantly on the move and the radios change hands several times a day.  Making radio unit to radio unit calls was deemed not practical as staff are assigned to fixed locations and not the radios. Some Tait ORCA 5035 radios are used more than 18 hours each day and are supplied with 2 batteries.

Where the customer requires a base station a Tait T2040 or TM8200 and matching power supply is used. The transmit power is set to low power.  A “rubber duck” antenna connected directly to the BNC connector is used instead of an external antenna. This resulted in a significant cost saving. It also made the base very easy to be relocated when the contractors gave the clients 24 hours to move to a new location as their present site was being demolished.

Inter fleet or inter group calls can be easily made. The inter-fleet call feature enables the staff of one airline to contact another airline, when dealing with in-transit passengers, the baggage handlers or security without leaving their station.  The alphanumeric display on the Tait 5035 radio makes selecting the fleet or group to be called very easy.

The hand set feature is very useful when information is being passed that the passengers do not need to know.  It is also useful on the ramp when the radio is used near to a high-pitched aircraft engine.

This Tait Trunked system has proved to be very popular with the users and management at the Grantley Adams International Airport. It has improved the efficiency of the operations.  The fast connection times of the Tait equipment made the change over from a simplex system less of a problem for users accustomed to instant communication.  The increase in range and much clearer reception were clear advantages.  The Tait ORCA series is a very rugged radio and can stand up to heavy use.  Radios can be quickly reprogrammed to other groups to meet changing requirements.

Mobile & Marine Systems Ltd. has found that in the shrinking world of radio communications, the Tait MPT1327 trunk system is still a viable and cost effective solution for communication.


Based in Barbados in the West Indies, Mobile & Marine Systems are the authorised sales and service agents / dealers for private mobile radio (pmr) solutions for Icom Radio Systems and Tait Radio Communications.  We are radio equipment and radio systems integrators and operate throughout the Caribbean  (Anguilla, Antigua, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Cayman Islands, Cuba, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Haiti, Jamaica, Martinique, Montserrat, Netherlands Antilles, Puerto Rico, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, Trinidad & Tobago, Turks & Caicos, Virgin Islands).

Mobile & Marine Systems provide a comprehensive range of professional pmr services and radio systems integration.  Backed by more than 40 years of experience within the Caribbean enables Mobile & Marine Systems to come up with solutions that incorporate 2 or more equipment suppliers in ways that other dealers may not think of.  Many of our customers have come to rely on these solutions.

If you have questions, simply need more information, or, need to discuss specific requirements, please click on the Contact MMS to e-mail us.