Solar Powered Wireless Links Take to the Skies

Business Profile

Chinta Air has been operating Outback Australian tours for over 10 years. This family owned boutique travel agency takes great pride in providing an experience tailored to your wishes. The company offers a wide variety of air tours including whale watching, Uluru from the skies, and Flinders Range Kangaroo Island Air tours to name a few.

CEO Noel Schwarz runs the business on the ground with his partner Felicity Brown, Chief Pilot is in charge of the skies. Felicity is one of 4 females in Chief Pilot roles in Australia and the only one in South Australia.Solar Powered Wireless Links

The business is based 20km outside of Ceduna in South Australia on the shores of Murat Bay on the West Coast of Eyre Peninsula. It lies west of the junction of the Flinders and Eyre Highways around 786 km northwest of the capital Adelaide. It boasts a population of 2,300.

Chinta Air is in the same boat as many other regional business who suffer from #datadrought.

Business Needs

While working out of a beautiful location, access to a reliable and speedy data is not so idyllic. The offices were too far out for an ADSL connection, and 4G mobile speeds (for data) were not up to scratch. Noel was on the search for a reliable, high speed wireless data link.

“The Satellite Sky Muster service had constant daily drop outs anywhere from 5 minutes to 5 days.”

Data speeds on a Sky Muster 25/5Mbps plan varied between 1.5/.5Mbps and 17/2.5Mbps with an average of 9/1.5Mbps and an average ping time of 680 ms…. when it was up and working. This meant skype calls and any video conferencing was constantly buffering and any large files took forever to upload…. when it was up and working.

Sky Muster was also limiting on its data plans with half of a 125gb data allowance being night data and only being available when the office was closed so as a result was never used.

After further research Noel discovered that an NBN connection was available on his property but that the Chinta Air offices were located a frustrating 14.3 km from the NBN tower – 300 metres over the NBN 14km cut off line to supply this service.

This meant that a non-standard NBN install had the potential to be a solution. And it had to be solar powered as there was no access to power in the area.

Chinta Air contacted Mal Fricker Communications, a data communications expert operating in the Ceduna area to put together a solar powered wireless link to get a decent speed of data to the office.

Product/s Used – Solar Powered Wireless Links

Metal enclosure, solar panel, battery supplied by Powertec Telecommunications.  Mast supplied and installed locally.

Altai 2 x C1an in bridge mode –  the C1an high-performance CPEs employ a patented smart-signal processing algorithm and an antenna designed to increase WiFi signal strength (transmission and reception) as well as the client’s throughput.

The Solution

Solar Powered Wireless LinksAfter undertaking the correct non-standard NBN install paperwork requirements, a Solar Powered wireless bridge was erected at the edge of the property 13.6km from the NBN tower.

On the bridge mast along with the equipment to solar power the bridge, 1 x Altai C1an in bridge mode beamed the signal 2km to the Chinta Air Offices where another Altai C1an received the signal and disbursed it.

Mal Fricker Communication set up with system over a couple of days and it was up and running immediately on completion.

Business Benefits

When you next call ChintaAir to book your bespoke Australian Air Tour, you can be assured that your enquiry will be dealt with promptly and efficiently – with no lapse in efficiency due to problematic data issues.   


“Since installing the Fixed wireless solar powered NBN repeater, data speed has increased on our 25/5 plan to 21/4.5 with an average of 15/4 and an average ping time of 65 mbps.  Chinta Air now has unlimited data plan for under half the monthly cost of Sky Muster, and a much smoother receive and delivery of data.” Noel Schwarz CEO/Operations Manager Chinta Air.

 “It was a neat solution that worked relatively easily.” Mal Fricker, Principal Mal Fricker Communications.

#datadrought  #solarsolution #AltaiSuperwifi

Contact Us Today about your Solar Powered Wi-Fi Options

This Solar Wi-Fi Installation was undertaken by Mal Fricker Communications who specialise in business communications in the larger Ceduna area.

For more information on this install you can contact Mal Fricker, Principal [email protected] or call 0427 253 077.

Powertec have access to a number of installers across Australia who specialise in non standard solar NBN installations. For a referral to a local expert on mobile and wi-fi solutions in your area, please contact us at Powertec on 07 5577 0500 or [email protected]

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    Surprising places with Wi-Fi

    Surprising places with Wi-Fi

    The availability of free Wi-Fi is no longer restricted to cafes, bars, restaurants, airports, shopping malls, pubs or hotels.  As the world goes hi-tech, you will be able to find free internet at places where you least expect it. Here are some unusual places across the globe where you will find free Wi-Fi.

    Mount Everest Peak

    The world’s highest peak, Mount Everest, became Internet friendly in 2010 when Ncell, a Nepalese telecom company, provided it with 3G data connection. Climbers can now find Wi-Fi hotspots all along the trek, to a height of 17,000 feet – the last point where you can take that envious selfie and update your social media status.

    The Moon

    The moon may not offer you breathable air but it does promise you a Wi-Fi hotspot! The feat was made possible by the researchers from MIT (Lincoln Laboratory) and NASA. Four separate telescopes were put in used to send signals to a satellite that revolves around the moon. This satellite had a receiver mounted on it. The scientists used a laser transmitter to beam data in the form of pulses of IR light through the four telescopes. The laser transmitter then transmits the IR rays to the telescope mounted on the satellite, which then collects and aims the beam into an optical fiber. These pulses are first converted into electrical pulses using a photodetector and then into data. This Wi-Fi hotspot makes it possible to transmit data between Earth and the moon at a rate of 19.44 mbps and to download it at a rate of 622 mbps.

    The International Space Station (ISS)

    If you are one of the lucky ones with a ticket to travel to the International Space Station, you don’t have to return back to Earth to share your experience with your friends. Yes, you guessed it right – the artificial satellite, ISS also has a Wi-Fi hotspot. The free internet works through the Ku-band, a satellite communications system that delivers output of around 10 mbps down and 3 mbps up from the space station.

    The North Pole

    Digital technology has made its presence felt in the remotest areas of the globe and the North Pole is no exception. One of the coldest places in the world, the North Pole too found Internet connectivity in 2005, when two Moscow-based Intel employees set up a Wi-Fi hotspot here, making it the first wireless connection in the Arctic region. They set up a wireless LAN connection with Intel Centrino mobile tech on four laptops and an 802.11b/g access point at the main camp site. The network connects to the internet via an Iridium satellite phone.

    Mount Girnar

    Mount Girnar, the tallest mountain in the Indian state of Gujrat is home to 30 temples and is a famous pilgrimage site. Pilgrim’s progress to the 1100-metre tall mountain was made Wi-Fi enabled making it easier for 25 lakh tourists to remain connected with their families, friends during the trek to the seven peaks of the mountain.

    Remote Villages of UP (India)

    The strong winds of the digital revolution that are sweeping through India, transformed the lives of 2000 villagers in the state of Uttar Pradesh in India, for whom, till then, the nearest telephone was 6 kms away.  The Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, as part of its Digital Gangetic Plain Project, ensured WiFi connectivity to 10 villages located near the Lucknow-Kanpur highway, making the area a lone island of connectivity in a sea of rural roads, rice fields and thatched roofs.


    Strange as it sounds but Oak Grove cemetery in Paducah, Kentucky has a free Wi-Fi hotspot.  The area was made Wi-Fi-enabled to allow visitors to conduct genealogy research and know more about the people who were buried there. On a similar note, free Wi-Fi connectivity is also provided in San José Cemetery in Granada, Spain.

    Mount Fuji

    The iconic Mount Fuji Mountain in Japan was made Internet-friendly with the launch of eight Wi-Fi spots all along the climb route including one on the summit. Officials say that the move was in response to the requests from American and European tourists who wanted to share their experiences with family and friends while on the move. Besides, the authorities also wanted to attract more visitors to the mountain.

    Donkeys, Kfar Kedem, Israel

    You read it right — Wi-Fi hotspots on donkeys! The innovative move was made a few years back in the historical amusement park in Israel. The park attempts to create life from the first and second centuries AD. The donkeys carry a small bag containing a router around their necks. The tourists can document their experience and share it on the social media.

    Val d’Isere, France

    If you are looking for the best selfies on a holiday, Val d’Isere, in France is a great place to head to. The place now offers a Wi-Fi gondola and so now you can take photos of the stunning views from your ski lift and post them straight to your Facebook.

    National Parks, Canada

    Canada has introduced several Wi-Fi spots in its national parks. Given the stunning beauty of these parks, the authorities are making them more Internet-friendly to attract more visitors and allow them to instantly share their experiences. While there, you will also be able to connect to GPS to get the most value from your visit.

    Waikiki Beach, Hawaii, USA

    Last but not least Waikiki Beach, Hawaii USA – using Altai SuperWifi products! For most people, a beach break is a way to get away from it all. However, if you can’t resist a peek into your social media or emails over the piña colada then Waikiki beach is for you. Along the sun and sand, you also have with Wi-Fi hotspots for company.

    Wi-Fi Deployment in Underserviced Area

    Wi-Fi Deployment in an Underserviced Wi-Fi Area

    Cost Effective Solution for Wi-Fi Hotspots

    This case study has particular relevance to many parts of Australia currently also experiencing underserviced Wi-Fi areas.

    Application:  Free WiFi hotspots for local residents in under-serviced wi-fi areas

    Products used: Altai A8-Ein, A2-Ei, A2, A2e, C1n and AltaiCare

    Result: The Altai Super WiFi hotspots covers a total of 225 areas such as government buildings, schools, taxi ranks, clinics, police stations, internet cafes etc. At peak hours, there are over a thousand of simultaneous users with an average speed of 15Mbps per user.

    Deployment Location: Dr. Kenneth Kaunda District Municipality, South Africa

    In South Africa, the lack of affordable, reliable, high speed broadband access has negatively impacted the country’s development. The high cost of communication has constrained investment in South Africa as a regional business hub.

    To improve the broadband penetration of the country, South Africa Connect, a national broadband policy, has been implemented.

    Telecommunication Holdings (Pty) Ltd (“Galela”) offers internet connection services in underserviced wi-fi areas of South Africa including townships and rural areas. Galela has successfully deployed a WiFi hotspot network in one of the large District Municipalities in South Africa, Dr. Kenneth Kaunda District Municipality (“Dr.KKDM”).

    An Altai Super WiFi solution was chosen for the network deployment as it requires fewer base stations and access points persquare kilometre. Altai Super Wifi Solution uses a patented long range technology. This technology significantly lowers the total project cost and shortens the deployment time.

    The WiFi service in Dr.KKDM was launched in February of 2016; it provides free internet connectivity to local residents. The rollout is part of the South Africa Connect program to provide fast, reliable and secure internet to all citizens.

    Phase two of this program will cover all the provinces in the north-western part of South Africa; it is targeted to be completed by the second quarter of 2016.

    The Challenge

    • Large area coverage with many WiFi hotspots scattered around the district
    • A large number of simultaneous users
    • Lack of Ethernet backbone

    The Solution

    Owing to the huge coverage area and high user capacity, Altai A8-Ein and A2-Ei are deployed on the rooftops of various buildings to provide WiFi access while C1n’s are used as CPE’s to extend the WiFi coverage. In some areas such as internet café s, schools and clinics, A2 and C1n are used to provide small area wireless networks.AltaiCare Logo_High Resolution

    The operator used AltaiCare; a cloud-based network management solution that manages the WiFi network and configuration, due to many base stations and access points installed in different locations. This helps the service operator to manage the network more efficiently.

    The Result

    There are 225 WiFi hotspots in the city of Tlokwe located in the Dr. KKDM. The WiFi hotspots are deployed mostly in underserved areas such as townships and settlements. At peak hours, there are over a thousand simultaneous users with an average speed of over 15Mbps per user. The local residents can now enjoy 24×7 seamless WiFi services for free.

    Ring is Lord of the Wi-Fi – Extending NBN Case Study

    Case Study – Extending NBN

    The install could not have been easier, in fact there was full strength at each end first time and the speed test from the home was running at 55meg, the same speed as the office. Now the family enjoys Netflix, internet, two way CCTV and security, even “in house” IP office telephony.

    Client: Award winning Architect Terry Ring from Ring & Associates built his own home in the suburb of Pialligo, ACT in 2015, in Ring Extending NBNthe middle of a winery estate and had gone with minimal mobile and wireless services since moving in as the site was labelled “off the grid” by all the carriers and the NBN – even though he only lived 5km from Parliament House.   Quotes for the cost of laying lines to access internet, ranged from the tens of thousands of dollars to “Can’t be done”.

    Upon contacting NBN data cabling and installation experts Transfibre P/L, Principal Greg Baker suggested that a point to point bridge be provided from his office to take advantage of the recently connected NBN.

    Business NeedsExtending NBN

    The offices for Ring and Associates Architects are located in Kingston, ACT – approx. 3km away from Terry’s new house.

    The customer needed to work from home and utilising his office NBN and high speed data would solve his home connectivity problems plus allow him to exploit wireless for additional services like a remote IP phone service and connective security including CCTV.

    Product/s Used

    • 2 x 20dBi panel antenna
    • 2 x Altai C1xan

    The C1xan is a key component in wireless broadband access provisioning and perfect for use as a low cost point-to-point bridge. It can be installed outdoors by the side of a window, mounted to a wall, at the rooftop of a building or placed at the desktop inside for fixed broadband access or high definition surveillance cameras.

    The installation took less than 2 days.

    The Solution

    coveragemaps Extending NBNA site survey was undertaken and the path profile between the two sites was determined – the antenna height at the office was
    determined to be 15 metres, with a 6 metre high antenna used at the residence. These heights provided a near clear line of site between the two ensuring a successful point-to-point deployment.

    The first C1xan plus a panel antenna was set up on the roof of the Kingston office building and used as a wireless link. The second C1xan and panel antenna was set up on the roof of his house 3km away.  A 5 gig wireless link was utilised

    Being near the Canberra airport, care had to be taken to ensure that the radio frequency didn’t interfere with the airport radar systems.

    Extending NBN – Contact Us Today about your Wi-Fi Options

    This installation was undertaken by Powertec Wi-Fi Partner Greg Baker from Transfibre P/L based in Townsville St, Fyshwick, ACT 2609. To ask Greg for more information you can contact him by email on [email protected] or direct by phone on 0418 483 000.

    Powertec have access to a number of installers across Australia who specialise in Wi-Fi installations including extending the NBN signal. For a referral to a local expert on mobile and Wi-Fi solutions in your area, please contact us at Powertec. 07 5577 0500 or [email protected]

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      Australians Embrace Guest Wi-Fi – Survey

      Here at Powertec we’ve noticed a huge turnaround in the accommodation industry – where paid guest Wi-Fi was once the norm, free Wi-Fi has taken over and is now considered a cost of doing business.

      Tourist Accommodation Australia (TAA) has recently undertaken an industry wide Wi-Fi survey of 3, 4 and 5 star hotels and serviced apartments revealed that 96% properties surveyed offer some level of free Wi-Fi to guests.

      Tourism Accommodation Australia represents the interests of hotels, motels and serviced apartment accommodation operators across Australia, including city, regional and remote areas.Guest Wi-Fi

      Responses from the survey revealed that:

      • 99 per cent of hotels currently offer Wi-Fi as a service to guests.
      • The majority of hotels (65 per cent) do not charge for some level of free Wi-Fi access.
      • A further 31 per cent offer it free to customers on a conditional basis (such as loyalty program member, upon booking direct, special inclusion)
      • Less than 5 per cent of hotels require all guests to pay for Wi-Fi.

      In the past two years, major Australian hotel groups such as Rydges and Meriton have introduced across-the-board free internet access, while other groups have extended free Wi-Fi access to loyalty club members.

      Tourism Accommodation Australia CEO, Carol Giuseppi, said that there had been a “revolution” in Australian hotels over the past few years with the number of hotels offering some form of free internet access to guests more than doubling. “Today, guests at most hotels in Australia have access to some level of free Wi-Fi coverage, particularly if they are members of a loyalty scheme or have arranged free access via a corporate or conference account,” said Ms Giuseppi. “In the past few years, hotels have had to upgrade their internet provision dramatically as the demand for connectivity has increased with guests often operating multiple devices and demanding ever-increasing bandwidth.

      “Hotels generally accept that a level of internet access should be provided free so that guests can answer emails or update their social media channels, but when guests want to download or stream items requiring massive bandwidth then it is only fair that they should pay for premium bandwidth usage.

      “To offset the high cost of internet provision, hotel groups are more likely to provide access for guests who are members of their loyalty club, so we would recommend travellers join the wide range of hotel loyalty clubs that are available. “Providing high-quality, fast, efficient and secure internet service is an important requirement for guests. Australian hotels have answered demands by guests by extending internet access and our industry is now on par with most hotel sectors around the world.”

      *TAA received responses from over 300 accommodation providers across Australia to their wi-fi survey, representing 3 to 5 star hotels and serviced apartment operators.

      Wi-Fi Gold Coast Beaches?

      Four words for what we want – Wi-Fi Gold Coast Beaches

      With our headquarters based on the Gold Coast, Powertec staff are quite passionate about putting Wi-Fi on the iconic beaches of the City of Gold Coast (if not everywhere on the Coast) in order to move forward as a Smart City. We see the benefits as far reaching; those of health and safety by telling our visitors about surf conditions; to benefits for business’ by offering two for one icecream vouchers; and for those who log in to a city-wide system to share their happy snaps; and there are many other potential uses.

      We’re a city that’s all about tourism and attracting foreign visitors to holiday and study. The one thing they will all have in common is that they want to be connected to their families back home. They want to share their iconic Gold Coast centric experiences with their families…..and showcase our city to the rest of the world.

      And we are not the only ones who want the same thing apparently. Gold Coast Bulletin journalist Alice Gorman recently ‘wrote out’ about wi-fi after being slugged $70 for wi-fi access at her hotel accommodation by a legacy system (old and out of date extortionate wi-fi charging system) being run by her holiday apartment on the Coast.   We spoke to Alice after her initial article appeared and she wrote a follow-up article below:

      Gold Coast Bulletin Wi-Fi gold coast article


      So we are ready and willing to speak to anyone who can make this happen – Wi-Fi Gold Coast Beaches.

      The Hotel Engineer Magazine Wifi Case Study

      The Hotel Engineer Magazine – Altai Super WiFi

      The Hotel Engineer Magazine is the official publication of the Australian Institute of Hotel Engineering (AIHE).  Distributed to all the hotels in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific, we were very happy to speak to them about our hospitality Wi-Fi set up for Peppers Ruffles Lodge & Spa in their January 2016 edition.

      With years of experienced backed by solid and reliable products, Powertec Telecommunications and our trained resellers have the product and skills to deploy internal and external wireless networks.

      Utilising world leading carrier grade equipment delivering distances of up to 80 km, our clients can take advantage of world class coverage distances combined with minimal operating costs to ensure your network is works to its greatest capability and covers your requirements.

      We can recommend the best solution for you in both licensed and unlicensed frequency bands in the areas of:

      • Point to Point Wireless
      • Point to Multi Point Wireless
      • Mesh
      • Wireless bridges
      • Wi-Fi Access Points

      Page1 The Hotel Engineer Magazine Altai Super WiFi

      Page 2 The Hotel Engineer Magazine WiFi

      For the full size article in the magazine, please visit this link:

      Unbroken the Movie Event Wi-Fi

      Event Wi-Fi
      Unbroken The Movie Event Wi-Fi Solution

      The degree of difficulty in the shooting and production of the life story of World War II hero Louis Zamperini was high – between the war and water scenes, aerial combat, and dogfights, they had a real challenge on their hands.

      But not so the internet access for the production site on the Gold Coast set of the movie.

      In October 2013 Powertec was given the opportunity to provide 3 remote data link systems for the “Unbroken” film production directed by Angelina Jolie. As filming was moving between multiple locations through remote areas of the Gold Coast, they required a solution that was both mobile and could be up and running in minutes.

      Product/s Used

      The Ericsson W35 is a Mobile Broadband Router and the natural choice for providing voice, fax and high speed internet using the mobile phone networks. It offers a highly cost efficient solution utilising the 2G/3G mobile network, especially in locations that lack fixed line infrastructure or as an alternative to traditional landline based services.

      This state-of-the-art WCDMA/HSUPA mobile broadband router with integrated design for high quality and performance support the major deployed communication standards.

      The Ericsson W35 is ideal for many applications including, marine, corporate voice and internet backup, call cost reduction, wireless local loop, data applications and home office use.

      The Altai C1an Wi-Fi Access Point/Bridge is designed as an essential component to extend outdoor Wi-Fi coverage into indoor areas for broadband connectivity.

      The Solution

      By using multiple Ericsson W35 3G routers attached to high gain antennas for incoming signal and Altai C1n WiFi Access Points for outgoing high speed Wi-Fi, Powertec were able to provide a secure compact mobile internet system with multiple levels of access for the entire on-set production crew.


      With 26 award nominations and 10 wins, the movie was a critical and box office success.

      Our contribution was like any other member of the production crew, we quietly got the job done and the movie was made. Powertec and our Australia-wide partners are very experienced in one-off production sites so variants of this event wi-fi solution would be suitable for beach events, music festivals, and even Tough Mudder-type events. 

      Scott Hampton, Powertec General Manager. 

      Peppers Ruffles Lodge & Spa – A Wi-Fi Upgrade

      Peppers Ruffles Lodge & Spa can be found near sleepy suburb Willow Vale as you travel past the scenic ridge through the Gold Coast Hinterland. The prime location showcases amazing views of the coastal flats punctuated by the Gold Coast skyline. Reviews on Trip Advisor rightly use words like “tranquil” and “magical” in describing this retreat and very little could detract from the luxury and relaxed ambiance.

      But General Manager Kevin Gong has a business to run and whilst 5 star rated, the remote location, the large number of individual villas and the 50 acre size of the property caused problems for staff, guests and conference delegates wishing to access a 5 star Hotel WiFi connection.

      Business Needs

      The office internet was supplied via ADSL, but the speed was poor (max 1Mbps download and 150Kbps upload) as the business is at the limit of the exchange resulting in slow internet speed. The property consists of two main building separated by 250 metres with no connectivity between except for telephone extensions. Guests had limited or no access to Wi-Fi at all.

      General Manager Kevin wanted to improve connectivity for staff plus connect the two buildings and provide guests with various options for Wi-Fi connectivity depending on their use of the property – whether day spa guests, or short or long stay guests of the retreat.

      The Solution

      The Altai Super Wifi C1n was selected as it was able to provide coverage and penetration through the villas from the outside. With the furthest villas at around 150metres line of sight from the access points we achieved complete coverage throughout the resort and surrounding pathways.

      The C1n can be configured as a Wi-Fi access point for local coverage, a repeater for extending Wi-Fi coverage from an AP or Station mode, similar to a small bridge. With a range of up to 600 metres these access points are premium products.  Five of these weatherproof units were situated throughout the retreat creating a seamless network.

      The Netcomm HS1200 provided the web portal for Peppers Ruffles Lodge & Spa to cater for the differing guest Wi-Fi offerings from 1 hour free to all spa guests, to free service for longer term guests with the inclusion of their email address.  The web portal is also able to be customised by the business to reflect their branding and is flexible enough to update with offers and information to guests.

      The VSDL modems allow up to 100Mbps Ethernet to travel across 1 pair of plain old telephone cable up to 1.6 kilometres in distance. These work similarly to ADSL and have a filter that separates the analogue phone and data. This allowed us to connect the buildings with Ethernet using an existing analogue phone extension off the customers PBX in place of a wireless link.


      Products Used

      • 5 x Altai Super Wifi C1n
      • 1 x Netcomm HS1200 hotspot/billing system/ticket printer
      • 2 x Ethernet over VDSL modems


      Business Benefits

      The final solution resulted in a robust network across the retreat for management, staff and guests. The retreat can now offer free limited or paid premium Wi-Fi access to guests and promote its conference facilities. New POS terminals, extended CCTV and a new Wi-Fi based Push to talk 2 way radio system can be implemented allowing efficient cost effective communications between management and staff.


      General Manager Kevin said “I was impressed by the quick and professional response of Powertec and am delighted with the end result of full Wi-Fi access for our staff, valued guests and conference delegates.”

      As part of the process to improve venue hotel WiFi, Ruffles also needed to upgrade their internet service.

      Powertec Goes to Hollywood – Event Wi-Fi

      Gold Coast is often called the Hollywood of Australia and we are regularly involved in setting up short term event wi-fi solutions for movie productions filming there. One of the movie applications just completed required a full complement of Robustel and Altai products.

      By using these models, we provided a full set of networking and management features that could be installed indoors but also cope with harsh outdoor environments – both needed for this filming environment.

      Continue reading “Powertec Goes to Hollywood – Event Wi-Fi”