Strata Worldwide has unveiled DigitalBRIDGE Plus+, a new solution to improve existing leaky feeder systems by digitizing the network and expanding connectivity capacity in the mining and tunnelling industries.

The solution, produced through an established partnership with Australian-based RFI Technology Solutions, enables mines to upgrade their existing leaky feeder systems to achieve digital high-speed Ethernet capabilities without losing VHF (Very High Frequency) voice communications.

Characterized by tough working conditions and hazardous environments, underground mines require reliable 24/7 communication systems throughout the entire infrastructure to ensure smooth operations and optimized safety. Leaky feeder systems are an important part of keeping two-way communication channels available at all times.

DigitalBRIDGE Plus+ takes typical leaky feeder solutions one step further. Bi-directional line amplifiers (BDA) with Ethernet means mines can interface with their existing fiber networks to inject high-speed digital data to their leaky feeder network. DigitalBRIDGE™ Quadports can then be placed anywhere along the cable, with each providing four Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) digital ports for the attachment and powering of any Ethernet devices.

Speaking on the news, Johan Strydom at RFI Technology Solutions said: “DigitalBRIDGE Plus+ is a combination of efforts from both companies, and we’re pleased to be working alongside Strata to create new solutions that help improve the communications, safety and working operations in underground mines.”

Strata Worldwide CEO Mike Berube added: “The solution will change the way mines use leaky feeder systems. With the use of a leaky feeder cable, along with the high-quality DigitalBRIDGE bi-directional line amplifiers, DigitalBRIDGE Plus+ delivers DC power, high-speed digital data and a full spectrum of VHF radio frequencies all over a single coaxial cable.”