ARMER Radio System
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Allied Radio Matrix for Emergency Response (ARMER) is Minnesota’s primary two-way 700-800 MHz trunked public safety radio system for all state agencies as well as all Police, Fire, EMS, city, county, federal and tribal governments. The system was developed to improve communication amongst emergency service providers during natural and man-made disasters.
Original funding for the ARMER Radio system came from the State Legislature in 2002 with a target completion of 2011. Although the system was fully functional by 2013, additions to the system buildout, modification and updates continue to date (December 2018).
The System Today
Recent buildout status (November 2018) shows 99% completion with upwards of 333 sites on the air throughout Minnesota, boarder states and Canada.
Participation status (July 2018) in all 87 Minnesota Counties by: all Law Enforcement (-1 county), all Fire (-9 counties), and all EMS (-7 counties). To date, best estimate is approximately 95,000 Radio IDs issued on the ARMER system (note: not all are active)
The system is a 700-800MHz Trunked radio system. Primary infrastructure is Motorola. The system has many built-in redundancies (power, links, etc.)
The primary system is owned and operated by the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MNDOT). It is also maintained primarily by MNDOT technicians. It is managed by the State Emergency Communications Board (SECB).
Other agencies/jurisdictions may also own infrastructure in the system and perform maintenance on select sites.
Along with providing personalized/private communications for its users, the ARMER system provides a very robust Interoperability Communications platform where ALL USERS can communicate with each other by using certain talk groups.
Note: All ARMER radios on the system have some of the same pre-programmed interoperability talk groups (STAC’s) in them (*there is an exception by waver for some radios). All radios also have the “Off-Network” National 8CALL channels as well*
The Minnesota Department of Health has Portable, Mobile and Fixed base radio equipment on the ARMER Radio system. This equipment is staged at all MDH district offices around the state.
Our St. Paul (Freeman Building) and St. Cloud locations are set up as Multi Resource Communications Centers and have fixed base configurations, with outdoor antenna systems for radio / phone equipment.
This equipment is primarily used for response but is used as needed to support MDH events and activities throughout the state. Our radio equipment is available for use by Trained MDH staff.
Along with our primary MDH radio talk groups, we have 2 talk groups to share with partners upon request.
Our radios also have a full complement of regional and statewide ARMER radio talk groups and conventional channels to support Interoperability throughout the state.
Minnesota DPS Emergency Communications Network site about the ARMER system.