The Challenge and Solution
The key challenge in this project was the lack of line of site. All high speed wireless links require a good line of site and free space around the line of site, known as the Fresnel zone. The link had several large trees blocking the direct line of site and also skirted another set of trees.
This meant all the usual frequencies used for high speed links e.g. 24, 60 & 80 GHz were ruled out. This left only the 5GHz band available. A Ubiquity AF5-U link was selected for 3 reasons:
- The Ubiquity AF5 U uses and extended upper part of the 5GHz spectrum leading to a lower probability of interference with local 5G WiFi networks.
- 100Km+ range with high gain antennas would give the best throughput in a non line of sight application.
- Link performance & price point along with client & our experience with the Ubiquity range of products.
The main end of the link posed problems due to the extreme reach required to access the antenna position.
The remote slave end posed another challenge due to the height required. A drone was used extensively to survey the link and establish initial link orientation.
Our aim in this project was to deliver a minimum connection of 200 MBit/s in each direction. This would provide a four fold increase in bandwidth.
The final test results came in at 340 Mbit/s download and 240 upload. This gave a 6.8x and 4.8x increase in overall link bandwidth. Below shows a drone fly through of the completed link. The old Motorola link is left in place to allow a zero downtime change over from the old to the new.
- Non line of site link at 600m
- Working at height
- 7x Increase in link capacity
- Zero network downtime in office hours
What they said...
Stephen Coombs, IT Manager
Due to a recent office reorganisation we needed a higher bandwidth connection between our main office and the remote warehouse. We called upon Twisted Pair to quote for a new wireless link. They surveyed the site and went through the various options available, explaining the issues in detail that would affect the link speed and why certain solutions would not work for us.
Since the installation despite recent severe storms the connection has been very stable and provided a significant increase in bandwidth. I’d be happy to recommend Twisted Pair and look forward to working with them on future projects.