TErrestrial Trunked RAdio (TETRA) is a digital trunked mobile radio standard developed to meet the needs of traditional Professional Mobile Radio (PMR) user organizations such as:

  • Public Safety 
  • Transportation 
  • Utilities 
  • Government 
  • Military 
  • PAMR 
  • Commercial & Industry 
  • Oil & Gas

The TETRA standard has been specifically developed to meet the needs of a variety of traditional PMR user organizations. This means it has a scaleable architecture allowing economic network deployments ranging from single site local area coverage to multiple site wide area national coverage.

Some unique PMR services of TETRA are:

  • Wide area fast call set-up "all informed net" group calls 
  • Direct Mode Operation (DMO) allowing "back to back" communications between radio terminals independent of the network 
  • High level voice encryption to meet the security needs of public safety organizations 
  • An Emergency Call facility that gets through even if the system is busy 
  • Full duplex voice for PABX and PSTN telephony communications

Besides meeting the needs of traditional PMR user organizations, the TETRA standard has also been developed to meet the needs of Public Access Mobile Radio (PAMR) operators.

To meet the ever changing user requirements and utilize the latest technology developments, TETRA continues to be evolved and enhanced with the development of new standards. This includes TETRA Release 2, which includes the TETRA Enhanced Data Service (TEDS) that provides wideband high speed data communication services.

Our Role & Activities

ETSI technical committee TETRA and Critical Communications Evolution (TCCE) produces the TETRA (Terrestrial Trunked Radio) standard which delivers frequency spectrum efficient digital PMR and PAMR system to support voice and data services using techniques such as Trunking, Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA) methods and a variety of efficient modulation schemes for increased data throughput.

In addition to the ongoing maintenance and development of the TETRA standard their activities include:

  • Identifying requirements for mission and business critical broadband services that will enable an evolution of digital narrowband PMR services to mobile broadband
  • The provision and development of proportionate security measures for TETRA and mission critical communications services
  • Proposing and developing solutions for the development of mission critical broadband services
  • The development of interworking interfaces between TETRA systems and mission-critical broadband systems
  • The evolution and enhancement of TETRA and critical communications services as required by the market with the provision of new services, facilities and functionality made possible by new technology innovations and standards

Within ETSI, the work of the TCCE committee depends on effective cooperation with other committees, such as ETSI EMC & Radio Spectrum Matters (ERM) committee, ETSI EMTEL and ETSI SAGE for security matters.

Outside ETSI, the TCCE committee liaises with the TETRA and Critical Communications Association (TCCA) on a number of topics e.g. promotional and technical discussions on how to best advance the TETRA Standard ensuring that the needs of the PMR community for mission-critical broadband services are met. Or with 3GPP on requirements and proposed architectural solutions for critical communications broadband evolution.

TETRA codes and security algorithms

Details of ETSI algorithms (TEA1, TEA3, TEA4, TEA6, TEA7, TAA1, TAA2).

Please see details of TETRA codes.


A list of related standards in the public domain is accessible via the TCCE committee page.