ZCG has recently returned from a successful Comms Connect Sydney located at Rosehill Gardens race course in Western Sydney.
ZCG has received a significant contract to supply high-end antennas for the Australian Department of Defence as part of technology designed to keep troops safe from explosions in the field.
See latest media release click here
The advanced troop protection system, designed by the Defence Science and Technology Group and manufactured by L3 Micreo in Brisbane, includes custom-made antennas, designed, tested and manufactured at ZCG’s Lindenow head office.
The locally made antennas are a critical component of the suite of robust troop-protection devices specifically designed for use by Afghanistan National Defence and Security Forces, for use by troops on foot, and mounted in light vehicles.
“The ZCG technical team spent six months last year working with our partners in Defence to develop antennas for devices that block radio-frequency transmission so enemy combatants can’t remotely trigger improvised explosive devices (IEDs),” ZCG managing director Garry Kelly said.
“Our antennas play an important role in keeping troops safe from IEDs in conflict zones around the world.”
The family-owned company designs and manufactures antennas for extreme conditions.
Under the direction of Mr Kelly, a radio-frequency expert, ZCG offers premium off-the-shelf and customised solutions to customers around the world. It provides everything from mobile antennas for use on vehicles and the marine industry; base stations for police and emergency towers; through to custom-designed broadcast antennas that enable radio and TV broadcasters to deliver a high quality, targeted signal. Autonomous haul trucks in the mining industry also rely on their products.
This is the second time the company has worked with Defence and L3 Micreo on this project, known as REDWING.
“Over the past two years, we have supplied more than 150,000 antennas, on time and on budget, for the first version of this technology,” Mr Kelly said.
“But this contract takes our business to a whole new level. As a small rural enterprise, we had to step up and increase our capability so we were eligible to win larger, more complex defence contracts.”
ZCG has worked hard to improve its systems to ensure it meets the minimum criteria for engaging with major defence players.
It renovated and restructured its Lindenow head office and completing a lean manufacturing and continuous improvement program run by Melbourne consultants OPTIM Improvement and co-funded by East Gippsland Shire Council.
The program helps local businesses to structure and operate their workplaces to be more competitive in domestic and export markets.
ZCG has now earned certification for ISO 9001 : 2015 Quality Management Standard, which means the company is operating at an internationally recognised standard. It also now qualifies for the ISO 14001 : 2015 Environmental Management Standard and AS/NZS 4801:2001 Health and Safety Management Standard.
The Minister for Defence Personnel and Veterans Affairs and Federal Member for Gippsland, Darren Chester, said it was a great achievement for regional businesses, such as ZCG, to win significant national contracts.
“It is essential for small companies such as ZCG to win major contracts, which help secure jobs, strengthen Australia’s capabilities and ensure the security of technology,” Mr Chester said.
“ZCG employs 20 people in Gippsland and winning this contract is a wonderful achievement and reward for all their hard work.”
Author: Kylie Miller
ZCG prides itself on being accredited and compliant with ISO, so all of our customers can be reassured ZCG is holding itself to the highest domestic and international standards.
ZCG has invested in a solar panel installation to greatly reduce our usage of fossil fuel energy production, removed lead usage from our solder, and cadmium from our silver solder. We have invested and been using for years a water based, environmentally friendly, machine cooling fluid.
With the introduction of the new 4GX or 4G LTE mobile phone network, ZCG has created a range of 4GX/ 4G LTE specific antennas in a marine, vehicle mount and fixed position availability.
The new 4GX/ 4G LTE frequency works within the 700-788MHz and allows for an improved mobile phone coverage, in both CBD and rural areas, as well as a faster wireless data speed with Telstra quoting:
“up to six times as fast as our original 4G” – Telstra website (https://www.telstra.com.au/coverage-networks/telstra-4gx)
This results in faster streaming/downloading and access to a wider mobile phone network. ZCG has matched our antennas specifications to help boost the 4GX/ 4G LTE mobile phone network to ensure you are always connected, whether in the car, at home or on your marine vessel, ZCG has a 4GX/ 4G LTE antenna solution to suit your needs.
ZM18-4GX – Vessel Mount
CM1600-4GX – Structure/Tower
SG700-4GX – Vehicle Mount
Super gain vehicle mount 4GX/4G LTE and 3G collinear, 718-788MHz and 820-890 MHz, FME female, 5.1dBi – 1.1m
ZD8Z-XP-MIMO – Wireless Data Improvement
Telstra, Optus & Vodafone 4GX/ 4G LTE, 4G, 3G multiband panel, 698-960 & 1710-2700MHz, +/- 45 deg polarised, 2 x N-type females, 100 Watts, 8dBi – 310mm
Check your Telstra 4G LTE (4GX) availability:
Check your Optus 4G LTE (4G PLUS) availability:
Check your Vodafone 4G LTE availability:
To find your local ZCG dealer – click here
For more information on any ZCG 4GX/ 4G LTE products or our wider range of mobile phone and wireless data improvement solutions. Please contact your local ZCG sales consultant.
ZCG All-Black antenna solutions available:
Mobile Phone Network Improvement:
All-black super gain, Telstra, Optus & Vodafone 4G, 3G & GSM mobile phone spring base antenna – 825-960MHz & 1710-2190MHz – 900mm
All-black lightweight super gain, Telstra, Optus & Vodafone 4G, 3G & GSM mobile phone spring base antenna –825-960MHz & 1710-2190MHz – 750mm
UHF CB Radio Communications:
All-black UHF CB Radio, ground independent, spring base antenna, 477MHz, 2.1dBi, UHF Male – 900mm
All-black lightweight UHF CB Radio, ground independent, spring base antenna, 477MHz, 2.1dBi, UHF Male – 750mm
AM/FM Radio Improvement:
All-black AM/FM radio receive spring base antenna – 900mm
All-black AM/FM radio receive lightweight spring base antenna – 750mm
ZCG also have a matching range of the above antennas in white or black fibreglass radome with a electro-polished spring base.
Original article by Critical Comms can be found here.
Article written by Jonathan Nally on 4th April, 2016.
ZCG Scalar has successfully carved out a specialist niche in both the domestic and export markets.
Antenna manufacturer ZCG Scalar was founded at Lindenow in Gippsland, Victoria, in 1970 by Gregor Cox, a ham radio enthusiast with the call sign VK3ZCG. Cox had identified a gap in the market for amateur radio antennas, but the business soon expanded its scope, supplying users such as the police force and emergency services, and essentially anyone else in the region who needed an antenna.
The business was bought by Garry and Sally Kelly in the mid-2000s. At that stage it still had a heavy focus on mobile antennas for land and marine vehicles, but Garry’s experience with broadcast and base stations meant that the company started getting a lot of work from the broadcasters. Although the business today still has a niche within the mobile antenna market, it is no longer reliant on it, having long since broadened is remit to cover broadcast television and radio, telcos, marine, backhaul, military users and other sectors.
Lindenow is located near Bairnsdale, about three hours’ drive from Melbourne. “It’s rural — if you came down here, we’re in the middle of Victoria’s veggie bowl,” said Trevor Small, ZCG Scalar’s general manager. “One of the reasons we’re here is that we get ‘clean air’ for antenna design and development and testing. We don’t get radio interference.
“Our test range fires out over 100 acres of vacant land,” he added. “We can spin the antennas and see what they do on a 360.”
ZCG Scalar’s head office and manufacturing facility at Lindenow, Victoria.
As well as the manufacturing base and head office in Lindenow, the company has warehousing and sales offices in Perth and Brisbane. It also has a technical services division at Lindenow, responsible for research and development, site coverage predictions and radiation exposure testing.
Despite its rural location, the company has built up an enviable reputation in the export market. “We’re certainly not exporting our mobile antennas; the market’s so flooded with cheap Chinese [antennas],” said Small. “But our specialised antennas are being used in South-East Asia, and we send products to Africa, Afghanistan and many other countries. Some of it gets used for military purposes, but it also gets used for mining communications, transportation fleets, tracking, taxi fleets and so on.”
Closer to home, Small said the company sells a lot of antennas into the agricultural sector, for instance for telemetry in vineyards. Vineyards are very sophisticated these days, with moisture sensors in the ground, taps that need to be turned on and off at certain times and so on. Data and commands are collected and sent wirelessly.
An unusual job was contributing antenna technology to a radio device that can counter the kind of improvised explosive devices found in hotspots such as Afghanistan. The two variants — Greengum for soldiers and Greygum for fitting to light vehicles — are seeing service on the frontline.
According to Small, one of the biggest constraints on antennas in this day and age is transportation. “Long, thin tubes are expensive and difficult to transport, so we’re always looking at how to make [our antennas] more compact for shipping,” he said.
When asked about where ZCG Scalar sits in the market, Small said, “We’re big enough to handle high-volume builds, but we’re small enough to do custom builds and do flexible designs for customers’ particular needs.
“A lot of companies can’t do that,” he added. “They’ll do it if you’re going to order 10,000, but if you don’t need 10,000 then [they’re not interested].
“[For instance] we did a custom antenna for a US warship. They needed it to ‘fit here’, and they needed it ‘this long’, and ‘this particular bandwidth’… and it bolted straight in, so they were pretty happy,” he said. “We’ve [also] made some prototypes for the ANZAC frigates. That’s the sort of thing we’re capable of, and that’s where ZCG’s niche is.”
“We have one customer who wanted an antenna that was just pretty much bulletproof, to put on the survey buoys that are around the top of Australia for tsunami warning and surveillance and tracking,” said Small. “And he said, ‘I can’t afford to have it fail. I’ve got a 50-nautical-mile journey out there in a boat, so I need an antenna that’s really bulletproof [and] I need a custom mount to fit on the buoys. Can you help me out?’ Two weeks later we had a design for him, and he said ‘You beauty!’ He said no-one else was going to be able to do that for him.
“We get a lot of those kinds of requests, and in most cases we can help them out.”
ZCG along with other Australian based industries were one of many collaborative partners in a new technological advancement titled ‘REDWING’ in a life-saving, Improvised Explosive Device (IED) protection system. In a first-of-its-kind technological protection upgrade, ZCG antennas have been implemented in both personnel mounted and vehicle mounted IED protection.
The Defences ‘REDWING’ program was initiated to find a low-cost, robust yet lightweight force protection system for soldiers/vehicles in high IED conflict zones around the world. The new technology titled Greengum (for dismounted personnel mounted units) and Greygum (for light vehicles) is designed for use by Police or military forces in high IED threat locations.
The Greengum and Greygum systems are currently being utilised by the Afghan National Defence and Security Forces in the current conflict season, their first without significant coalition support. The design and manufacture of the Greengum and Greygum systems allows for minimal operator training and limited logistic support.
The $50 million investment by the Australian government will ensure both safety to troops and civilians as well as a domestic investment into creating local employment for Australia.
Close collaboration between all of the Australian industries evolved, led to an accelerated production schedule which led to implementation for the Afghanistan defence forces within 5 months of the pre-production design.
ZCG are an Australian based antenna and RF solutions company based in East Gippsland Victoria. ZCG has collaborated with other Australian Industries to produce high quality RF solutions and our technical RF knowledge on time and on budget, to ensure the safety of troops in conflict zones.
Read DSTO article here:
With energy costs rising and the cost of manufacturing on the increase, ZCG decided to reduce our reliance on greenhouse emission energy and move to renewable energy in the form of a solar panel array.
ZCG understands that a stance on climate change needs to be undertaken by all businesses to take whatever measures we can to ensure the environment is here for future generations. ZCG has always strived to be environmentally friendly, changing our CNC cutting fluid to environmentally friendly liquids, so no harm is done to our fauna and flora. We have reduced our energy needs by replacing outdated fluorescent lighting with modern low powered LED lighting throughout our manufacturing facility and office. We strive to reduce our waste into landfill by using all available recycling processes for our waste. We hope that all these small steps and steps in the future will reduce our impact on the local and wider environment.
With ZCG manufacturing happening between the hours of 7.30am – 3.30pm we understood that this is when the sun is shining and at its strongest, so why not use this to our advantage and use a free source of energy to power our facility during these hours THE SUN! During these hours ZCG will not be reliant on outdated technology of burning fossil fuels to power our facility, but our solar array on the roof of our facility covers all our energy needs from our CNC machines, lighting down to our administration computers.
Being a business, the government incentives to install a renewable source of energy and reduce our reliance on fossil fuel is minimal. ZCG took it upon itself to invest in renewable energy and assist in protecting the environment and the air we breathe. With the added benefit for you our customers in allowing ZCG to halt price increases due to rising energy costs.
ZCG believes that with little steps within all Australian businesses, we can reduce our Carbon Footprint as a nation and ensure that this wonderful country of ours stays beautiful for future generations.
CommunicAsia2015 and BroadcastAsia2015 at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore has come and gone.
ZCG visited this vast exhibition from the 1-3 June 2015, to not only visit and expand our current relationships with both suppliers and customers but also introduce and expand our ever growing partnerships throughout Australia, Asia and the rest of the world.
ZCG did not present a stand within the last two years CommunicAsia2015 or BroadcastAsia2015, but maybe In 2018 you might see a friendly ZCG stand, watch this space.
The CommunicAsia2015 and BroadcastAsia2015 exhibitions gave an insight into global movements on broadcast technologies, wireless data transfer and satellite communications capabilities currently available, and where it is heading.
As a company, we use these exhibitions to broaden both our technical and product range for the ever expanding communications market. We also use them to ensure ZCG produces or supplies the best products available. Ensuring ZCG stays on the forefront of communications technology for our world’s ever expanding communications needs.
ZCG as a company would like to thank all current customers and suppliers who took some time out of a very successful exhibition to allow us to connect with them. And a big thank you to all new and future customers and suppliers for insight into your business and products and allowing us to introduce ourselves and our business.
ZCG would like to introduce the full range of RF MAX products.
The RF MAXbrand prides itself in supplying high quality components with robust, reliable construction in mind. RF MAX understands that installation should only happen once and maintenance kept to a minimum.
“Install once, maintenance at a minimum”
All components that have to face the harsh conditions of the Australian weather are designed and manufactured to resist the harsh UV environment Australia is well known for.
When looking for performance and reliability orientated installation accessories and antennas, RF MAX is the brand you will be wanting and requesting next time you have to install/upgrade your antenna or installation hardware.
RF MAX products are put under strict scrutiny by ZCG to ensure only the best for you the customer, to assist in hassle free installation, maintenance and service life.
ZCG offers the following RF MAX products, with the range growing so keep an eye out for new additions.
The newest addition to the RF MAX catalogue are the ZD8Z-XP-716-MIMO & ZD8Z-XP-MIMO, which are purposely built for MIMO applications within the GSM, NextG, 4G and 3G frequency range with the added benefit of future proofing for the up-and-coming 700MHz addition to the cellular band.
The RF MAX brand, prides itself in supplying high quality, reliable products for all applications.