Digital radio
One network - digital - secure - nationwide - for everyone
Digital instead of analog.

All of Germany now has a standardized digital radio network for authorities and organizations with security tasks (BOS).

Simple and fast communication is essential for police, fire and rescue services, not only at major public events, but also in the event of a disaster. In future, police, fire departments, rescue services and aid organizations will communicate in a single network - and completely tap-proof.

The authorities and organizations with security tasks (BOS) ensure your safety in Germany. These include, in particular, the fire departments, federal and state police, rescue services, aid organizations, customs, constitutional protection authorities and the judiciary.

For all organizations, communication is an essential prerequisite for fulfilling their tasks. The analog communication technology previously used for this purpose is now outdated. It is not uncommon for BOS analog radios to be over 30 years old and therefore prone to faults. As advanced as the radio technology used was in the beginning, it now does not offer anywhere near the functionalities that are common in digital mobile radio systems today.

Therefore, we urgently need modern and secure communication technology for our emergency services and for their safety - digital radio!


The technical introduction of the new technology in NRW

The introduction of digital radio for all "authorities and organizations with security tasks" (BOS) is the largest technical modernization project in North Rhine-Westphalia in decades.

The introduction started as a project in 2007 and has since been transferred to line work. The Authorized Body at the State Office for Central Police Services NRW (LZPD NRW) is responsible for setting up and operating digital radio. The Ministry of the Interior NRW (IM NRW) is responsible for the overall coordination.

The challenge was and still is enormous: 40,000 police officers and around 150,000 members of the fire departments, rescue services and aid organizations are to be enabled to use digital radio technology. To achieve this, more than 450 new base stations had to be set up and put into operation across the country.

For the police alone, a requirement of around 10,000 handheld radios, around the same number of vehicle radios and around 2,000 permanently installed radios at police stations was determined. Around 7,000 existing vehicles have been equipped with the new digital radio technology. All 49 control centers in the district police authorities, the NRW State Office of Criminal Investigation and the LZPD NRW have also been equipped with the new technology.

The need for digital radio technology is even greater among fire departments. Fire departments, rescue services and aid organizations need around 80,000 digital handheld radios and around 15,000 vehicle radios. The local authorities are responsible for procuring this equipment. Connecting the 54 fire department control centers to digital radio, on the other hand, is a task carried out by the LZPD NRW. Fire department experts support the LZPD NRW in this on a permanent basis.

In total, there are currently 29 professional fire departments, 396 volunteer fire departments and 88 plant fire departments in NRW that will be using digital radio in the future. In addition, there are aid organizations and rescue services such as the German Red Cross, Johanniter Unfallhilfe, Malteser Hilfsdienst, Arbeiter-Samariter-Bund and Deutsche Lebens-Rettungs-Gesellschaft. In addition, the German Federal Police, customs and the prison system will of course also be using the new technology. The German Armed Forces will also be using digital technology in the future.

For all these authorities and organizations with security tasks (BOS) - and not just the police - the LZPD NRW is the point of contact when it comes to the current and future operation of digital radio. The Authorized Agency NRW is located in the LZPD NRW and monitors the digital radio network in the state for all BOS with the help of the Control Center Digital Radio (CCD). For example, only the Authorized Body NRW is allowed to issue the SIM card-like BOS security cards, without which a digital radio would not work. And only it decides who is allowed to use digital radio at all - and who is not.

The BOS digital radio is not a rigid structure. The network requires constant further development, maintenance and optimization. Potential dead spots need to be eliminated, new technical developments need to be integrated into the network and end devices need to be provided with new software updates.

The functionality and reliability of digital voice communication should be guaranteed by 2030.

Therefore, the network modernization of the existing TETRA system technology is planned and preparatory activities for the simple and fast implementation of BOS broadband services are being carried out.


Information on
Digital radio fulfills important tactical requirements of the emergency services for modern communication.
The transition to the "digital world" is a major step that requires extensive conceptual work and strategic decisions.

Interior Minister Reul finds out about the latest technology in the field of digital radio and control center technology

Translated with (pro version)
In urgent cases: Police emergency number 110