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Serving The Underserved – Bringing Broadband to Remote Locations

By Dudy Cohen | Feb 21, 2018 8:19:02 AM

Broadband connectivity became a standard when it comes to urban areas in which businesses and customers leverage many options for easily connecting to broadband services (fixed and mobile).

However, in the case of rural and remote areas, broadband connectivity is not always available. This does not mean that these areas don’t need continuous connectivity. They do, but it’s often challenging to achieve for multiple reasons.

In fact, for rural farms and villages, remote gas stations and convenient stores, remote public safety and defense facilities, mining locations, and utilities facilities such as dams and substations, broadband connectivity is a must. It’s required to remotely monitor and operate heavy machinery in mining sites; operate remote, real-time surveillance systems in remote utilities sites; and provide multimedia, mission critical applications to public safety and defense facilities.

Bridging the gap

The gap between broadband availability in urban areas and remote yet important locations needs to be bridged. An example of an initiative taken to bridge this gap is the signing of an agreement between the French government and mobile operators serving France to invest close to €3 billion in infrastructure aimed to increase coverage of mobile broadband services in the rural parts of the country.

The challenge

But bridging this gap is not an easy task. Connecting those remote sites and areas with broadband services can be done with either fiber- or wireless-based solutions.

In most cases, fiber connections are not feasible and certainly not cost-effective, while wireless solutions require the installation of massive systems at the remote sites.

In the case of large utility facilities, this is not an issue. However, in the case of serving remote gas stations, stores, farms or even villages, implementing a massive tower with large antennas and a shelter to accommodate indoor equipment will not be accepted by customers and property owners.

The solution

The optimal solution for this challenge is to implement a high-power, all-outdoor solution that is capable of delivering ultra-high capacity.

The Ceragon FibeAir IP-20C-HP offers customers such as network operators, utility and mining companies, and public safety and defense organization an all-outdoor solution for remote site connectivity.

This facilitates a high-capacity solution (up to 2Gbps when using 4X4 LoS MIMO over 56/60MHz channels) that does not require a shelter or any indoor footprint. It also reduces the antenna size and outdoor footprint by utilizing a high-power radio (with 35dBm transmit power) that enables the use of smaller antennas.

Additional technologies such as traffic splitting between its two carriers, LoS MIMO and Advanced Space Diversity may further reduce the antenna size at the remote location.

The IP-20C-HP also reduces the complexity of maintenance and spare unit management as it feature easy-set-radios. These field-replicable diplexer units allow the operator to keep a single spare unit per band, while diplexers that set the sub-band can be replaced by the operator.

Another capability, which is extremely important for remote sites, is remote 2nd carrier activation. This capability eliminates the need to dispatch a crew to the remote site when network performance requires the activation of the second carrier to gain additional capacity at the site.

To conclude, Ceragon’s unique multicore technology offers a cost-effective, low footprint, remote broadband connection to sites and areas that were, until now, underserved.

 

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Dudy Cohen

Written by Dudy Cohen