January 25, 2013
Acoustic Technology, Inc. (ATI Systems), the world's leading provider of intelligible and long range voice systems, recently delivered a Mobile Mass Notification (MN) unit to the Mayor's Office of Emergency Preparedness for the City of Boston.
"ATI Mobile MN systems are capable of providing highly intelligible, life saving instructions and directions to the local populace," remarked Dr. Ray Bassiouni, president and CEO of ATI Systems. "When every second counts, the powerful, and highly intelligible multi-language voice broadcasts from the ATI Mobile High-Power Speaker Station (MHPSS) ensure that emergency communications are heard and understood over large areas, even inside cars and buildings."
This unit will be a great tool for the Boston Police Department and the Massachusetts State Police to alert citizens about severe weather emergencies or large scale accidents. In addition the unit can be used for crowd or riot control. The need for this alerting capability was highlighted by events during the 4th of July 2012 festivities.
During that event, State officials started evacuating the Esplanade as a potentially violent thunderstorm headed toward the thousands of people crammed in the area for the Pops concert and fireworks. The crowds were sheltered at the Storrow Drive tunnel and the Hynes Convention Center garage during the storm. After the National Weather Service declared the area safe again, State and Boston police began letting people back onto the Esplanade. Throughout the incident, many people were confused about what was happening or where they should be, and that is where a tool like the ATI MHPSS can really help.
The ATI MHPSS is managed by a Control Station which includes a hand-held microphone and an industrial grade laptop computer running the ATI MassAlert™ Software Package. MassAlert™ is a two way communication alarm software platform with a graphics screen for control and monitoring. The software uses enhanced graphics and incorporates a customized map such as Google Earth, GeoBase, AutoCAD, or a similar format that shows the basic area of alert. The control unit is battery operated so that it will continue to function properly in the case of a power failure.
The ATI MHPSS provides 1600 watts of audio power. It is battery operated and it contains a Class D amplifier integrated with a controller. The unit communicates with the control station wirelessly by radio frequency (RF) which is accomplished using a by Motorola XTL5000 radio.
The speaker head includes four 400W speaker horns at 90 degree angles to one another. This configuration allows the user to control the sound in each of these directions. The MHPSS is mounted on a trailer, which includes a standard type bolt-on drawbar eye for vehicle transportation, as well as front and rear expanding leveling jacks for stability. In order to project the sound as far as possible the trailer is equipped with a speaker pole which is a cranked mast using electric wenches. The unit's batteries can be charged from AC power, its solar panel or a gas generator hookup.
ATI Systems has provided several of these systems to the US Army in Afghanistan and Iraq and in many other military locations.
Above are two views of the ATI Mobile High-Power Speaker Station (MHPSS), with the pole up for alerting and down for travel.