In Australia, the federal government has had an ambitious plan to connect all citizens to a national broadband network (NBN). However, in some of the more remote parts of the country, of which there are more than a few, the incumbent provider, Telstra, cannot deliver that subscriber experience. This leaves it to alternative access providers to fill the gap.
One of these providers, Aviat partner MIMP Connecting Solutions, decided to use Aviat Networks microwave solutions to reach remote customers beyond the NBN fiber footprint. This is important as many vulnerable subscribers need to be connected to doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals for help. Literally, this can be a matter of life or death.
The public safety market has relied for many years on Aviat Networks to be a supplier of mission-critical microwave backhaul equipment. For example, since the introduction of the Eclipse microwave radio a few years ago, it has been received very successfully in the Australia public safety market. In the last five years, Aviat has sold and deployed thousands of radios (i.e., TRs) in the public safety and life critical radio ecosystem.
“The cutting-edge Gigabit Ethernet and IP capabilities of Eclipse were critical for Australia government agencies,” says Raj Kumar, vice president, sales and services, Asia Pacific, Aviat Networks. “As radio sites rolled out across Australia, Eclipse has enabled efficient deployment of multiple radio carriers in a single chassis—a mission-critical advantage for the simulcast trunking sites.”
As we have seen recently, microwave radio continues to find new and niche applications beyond the archetypical mobile operator and public safety markets. Long time Aviat partner/customer Vertel has been working on microwave broadband in the Australian healthcare sector for many years. And with the recent emphasis placed on servicing the healthcare sector by the rollout of the National Broadband Network across Australia—as NBN lumbers along toward a 2019 completion date—Vertel has been able to re-energize this niche application in microwave radio for its support of telemedicine and telehealth, as outlined recently in Pulse + IT Magazine.
- November 1, 2013
- Adelaide, Australia, Aviat Networks, Broadband, high-capacity bandwidth, Life Care, Local area network, microwave networking, National Broadband Network, South Australia, WAN, Wide Area Network
Aged care provider Life Care decided not to wait seven years for Australia’s National Broadband Network to reach the Adelaide suburbs. Instead, it commissioned an Aviat microwave radio high-capacity WAN. Photo credit: Douglas Barber [CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0], via Wikimedia Commons
Microwave radio is many things: It is an enabling technology in support of the mobile phone revolution and all its dependent social networks. It is a dedicated system that provides the skeleton and musculature (i.e. infrastructure) that allows police, firefighters and other first responders to react in a coordinated fashion to both routine and emergency public safety incidents. But it also serves in lower profile but nonetheless very important niche applications around the world. Take for example the experience of a regional healthcare provider in South Australia.
In a recent article in the national newspaper The Australian, the networking story of Life Care, the umbrella organization for a series of five aged care facilities and 12 retirement “villages” in and around Adelaide, Australia, was detailed. With the rollout of the National Broadband Network slowly progressing across Australia and not anticipated to reach the Adelaide suburbs for seven years, Life Care decided it could not wait so long to connect its locations via high-capacity telecoms. It chose to bid out a project for its own private Wide Area Network (WAN). Aviat Networks partner MIMP Connecting Solutions won the contract as the incumbent vendor. The clincher on the deal: the capability of Aviat radios to connect the farthest outlying facility, at some 50 kilometers, in Aldinga with high-bandwidth wireless. Furthermore, MIMP could offer a licensed spectrum solution, free from interference, whereas the competitors could not. And with a breakeven ROI of just two years, an Aviat-powered microwave WAN was a no-brainer—the others were four-years-plus to payback.
Scale of MIMP’s mobile microwave radio infrastructure can be gauged by observing the installer at the very top of the 25-meter radio mast.
In the past, we have seen microwave radio installations at zoos, auto races, and on mountaintops reached by funicular and other one-of-a-kind implementations. This time, one of our partners, MIMP Connecting Solutions of South Australia, is in the process of completing an installation that is at the same time completely novel and tremendously important in the struggle to preserve indigenous cultures.
Currently, MIMP is rolling out microwave backhaul for the Australia Pacific LNG (APLNG) liquefied natural gas joint venture in Queensland, Australia. However, in Queensland, and other parts of Australia, legislation in recent years such as the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act 2003 has sought to preserve culturally significant Aboriginal places from development. This impacts the installation of the APLNG microwave backhaul network because conventional radio sites cannot be constructed under the auspices of this legislation on protected Aboriginal land.