The Australian Antarctic Division has a long history of providing telecommunications as part of the support provided to expeditioners within the Australian Antarctic Territory. Since the days when Mawson’s expedition in 1911 setup the first transmitter at Commonwealth Bay, the Division has provided continuous and increasingly sophisticated telecommunications capability that now includes data to support medical services, science, education and Internet access. The provision of telecommunications to Antarctica relies on satellite transmission for backhaul.
A remarkable paper from 1961 demonstrates that the Post Master General’s Department was at the forefront of technological developments concerning radio communications by artificial satellites before the launch of Telstar.
This paper proposes a new vehicle, dubbed SafetyNet, for improving communications in rural and remote Australia. A wholesale mobile network using LTE in the 450 MHz spectrum band is proposed. SafetyNet would address any updated Universal Service Obligation, public safety network options and mobile roaming.