Altai (mobile telephone system)
|This article does not cite any references or sources. (January 2012)|
The Altai mobile telephone system is the pre-cellular 0G radiotelephone service that was first introduced in the Soviet Union in 1963, and became available in the most large cities by 1965. It is a fully automated UHF/VHF network that allows a mobile node to connect to a landline phones, and was originally conceived to serve government officials and emergency services, but has since spread into general use, and is still in use in some places, where its advantages outweigh those of conventional cellular networks.
From the technical standpoint "Altai" was fairly ordinary UHF/VHF trunked radio, but it was equipped with the automatic switching circuits on both mobile and static nodes that allowed the mobile end of the link to generate and transmit dialing signals and to connect the static end to the PSTN. Few initial installations used 150 MHz frequency, but as the network grew the later iterations switched to 330 MHz. Base stations have had up to 22 independent trunks of 8 channels each, and were commonly mounted together with the TV transmitters, sometimes even sharing the HF circuitry. This allowed for good coverage, as there were generally only one base station per city.