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Deployable Emergency Communications Systems – Thales UK/EDF Energy

Thales UK - EDF Energy
17th April, 2014

In 2013, WH Bence were subcontracted by Thales UK to design and build a Deployable Communication and Information System module solution as part of a wider contract for emergency management being delivered to EDF Energy by Thales.  The system was based around the CHEM-8 hook loading system, which is used throughout the national resilience programme.

There were several key design factors that made these units different to the standard Fire and Rescue units as they are designed to provide remote monitoring  for EDF’s nuclear power facilities after a beyond design basis event.  The units were built with on-board power generation capability that is capable of sustaining the system for an eight-hour period between refuelling.

To be able to stow all of the equipment necessary to monitor the power stations, Bence used a co-polymer body structure to create a lightweight, strong module that included a bespoke stowage solution for the variety of remote monitoring equipment on-board.  To assist with health and safety requirements for loading and unloading the module, Bence installed slide and tilt stowage solutions to allow easy access to the equipment from high level.

The module body design also took into consideration wind loading and durability with the body being built from co-polymer, extending the unit life expectancy to in excess of 20 years.  The unit was also designed to withstand winds of over 80mph and the latest Clark Masts system was fitted to support the wind loading required.

The units are currently in the process of being delivered to Thales, for subsequent system commissioning and delivery to EDF Energy at depots across the UK, ready for deployment at a moment’s notice.

EDF Energy have invested in the latest Mercedes 6×6 Zetros and 4×4 Unimog to make sure that this solution is all-terrain.


Photographs exhibited with kind permission of Miss N Peacock.

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