Long Range Wi-Fi Networks – NSW Recreation Centres

Business Profile

The motto of the NSW Government Office of Sport and Recreation is “More People, More Active, More Often” ….and now they can add “More Wi-Fi” to this slogan.

long range wi-fi

The Sport and Recreation Department has 11 Centres across NSW, set in the most beautiful scenic river, beach, bush or alpine locations. Visitors can choose from the serene beauty of the Hawkesbury River and Lake Macquarie, to the relaxed banks of Lake Ainsworth, the snow country of Jindabyne and pastoral serenity of Borambola, Lake Burrendong and Lake Keepit. Each Centre offers a variety of activities and programs that take advantage of the unique features of their location and facilities.

Recently the NSW Department of Sport and Recreation decided to completely review their communication systems for sporting/recreation facilities across NSW; some of the sites had basic Wi-Fi giving limited site coverage but in general the existing set-up didn’t cover the requirements of guests or staff.

Business Needs

The planning and install was undertaken by Advanced Communications Riverina with Stephen Hood as the lead contact. Their brief from the client was to update the existing system to achieve full site coverage, including long range Wi-Fi networks, monitor data usage, collect data plus set up a separate corporate network separate from both the visitor and guest networks.

This was a big project with the following sites planned to be updated – and all connecting – with one of the first sites being Sydney Academy in Narrabeen:

  • Berry
  • Borambola
  • Jindabyne
  • Lake Ainsworth
  • Myuna Bay
  • Point Wolstoncroft
  • Sydney Academy
  • Sydney International Regatta Centre
  • Sydney International Equestrian Centre
  • Sydney International Shooting Centre
  • Sport House

The Challenges

  • Large size and long range Wi-Fi requirements of the sites; coverage numbers for Wi-Fi use ranged from 250 people per site through to over 1000 at some of the Olympic Venues.
  • Foliage/trees limiting RF transmission
  • Sarking (building felt fixed over the rafters of a roof underneath tiles of slate) was discovered wrapped around the walls in the building. This is normally just found underneath roof tiles but results in reflecting RF signal away from the buildings.
  • Large concrete buildings with bunkers (shooting centre)

The Process and Solution

To manage this large project there were a number of steps needing to be done for each site with the first site being Sydney Academy of Sport in Narabeen.  This site was used as the template for moving forward though there were specific challenges to each that needed to be addressed:

Basic steps undertaken for the project included:

  • Full consult with the client to understand their networking requirements particularly how they wanted the corporate and guest visitor networks to run.
  • On-site survey to determine potential challenges for the outdoor Wi-Fi, the best locations and the equipment needing to be used
  • Off-site mapping to determine the best coverage area and planning for the challenges
  • Careful integration and testing of VLANS on site.
  • Design of public Wi-Fi splash pages for each site, ensuring terms & conditions of client were met.

Network Management Solution

Outdoor Wi-Fi

The AltaiCare cloud management system was deployed to provide network management and differing levels of Authentication for Wi-Fi users.

  • SSID 1 for general public access internet usage, with monitored bandwidth, data allowance and secure internet access for groups of users.
  • SSID 2 was for administrative purposes with a suppressed SSID. Other users will not be able to discover this network and it is the only one that allows access to business equipment utilised by staff. It was routed via the pre-existing Corporate Network
  • SSID 3 was the management VLAN for the wireless backhaul, AP and network management.
SSID VLAN Traffic Priority Authentification Encryption Bandwidth Control
1 102 Normal Captive Portal (and optional MAC address) Open Multiple Preset Accounts for Bandwidth and Data Allowances
2 101 Normal WPA2-PSK AES Corporate Users Via Citrix
3 1 Normal WPA2-PSK AES No Bandwidth Control

AltaiCare Data Management was set up and run as a test at the Narabeen site to finalise management requirements before being rolled out to the remaining sites.

Product/s Used

A8n Base Station – The A8n belongs to the A8 series which is the world’s leading 802.11n Wi-Fi outdoor access point optimised for maximum coverage and highest throughput from a minimum number of installation sites. This model has 5 GHz radio upgraded to 802.11a/n/ac standards.

 “The true beauty of the Altai products is their performance in the outdoor environment.”

With the client utilising the world’s leading A8n base station, they received the following benefits:long range wi-fi

  • 8 antenna ports for 4 dual-slant sector antennas, providing flexible 90° to 360° coverage
  • 8×8 MIMO combined with Altai’s proprietary smart antenna technology for the best available uniform large-area coverage
  • The multiple antennas of A8n series can be configured to provide coverage that is optimised for area, pattern and elevation
  • Provides up to 3 times the range and 10 times the area of coverage as compared to standard access points
  • 50 cm co-location with 3G/4G cell sites on a single-pole
  • Up to 300 Mbps (access) plus 867 Mbps (access/backhaul for ac model) /300 Mbps (access/backhaul for n model) capacity per base station
  • Extended reach, with up to a 30 km backhaul range
  • Fast and simple installation using a single-pole mount for radios and antennas
  • Altai’s AirFi technology for higher capacity and efficiency per WiFi channel

AltaiCare Cloud Network Management Services – The system monitors data usage/limits and the offsite management of all the access points.

  • Zero configuration allows a non-technical person to simply unpack and plug APs to WiFi network; the APs will automaticallyAltaiCare Logo_long range wifi configure
  • Owing to AltaiCare’s local breakout architecture and CAPWAP protocol, management data that goes to the cloud is securely encrypted in SSL, while data and control traffic stays local
  • Allows IT managers of enterprises to quickly set up secure access for their internal network, as well as provide hotspots to accommodate guest access
  • Pay-as-you-grow subscription model of AltaiCare results in lower OPEX
  • AltaiCare’s location-aware advertising services enables additional revenue from advertising

Install

Install was undertaken and took 1 week for the first site.  Sites following were each different depending on how large they were.

Business Benefits

As you would expect from Altai Super Wi-Fi products, the coverage was exceptional and the end result is a happy client.

The coverage is fantastic with the Altai units and the penetration is excellent. Ease of management of the splash page for the end user is very simple.

Stephen Hood, Advanced Communications Riverina

 

Contact Us Today about your Long Range Wi-Fi Options

This Wi-Fi Installation was undertaken by Advanced Communications Riverina who specialise in business communications via PABX, telephone systems and Wi-Fi.   They service the larger regional NSW area and are based in Wagga Wagga.

For more information on this install you can contact  Stephen Hood, Unified Communications Sales Adviser directly on [email protected] or call 02 6922 2222.

Powertec have access to a number of installers across Australia who specialise in large area, high traffic outdoor Wi-Fi. 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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Accommodation Park Wifi Case Study

The mining company currently using the site for its FIFO workers noticed that the moral of the workers had increased greatly after the Park WiFi installation due to staff ability to maintain communications with family and friends back home.

Business Profile

The town of Wandoan is situated midway between Brisbane (389kms south east) and Rockhampton (376km North East).  Not a big town, at the 2011 census, Wandoan had a population of 665.  One notable Australian who grew up in the town is Australian, Queensland and Brisbane rugby league captain Darren Lockyer.

The town’s economy is traditionally (since 1853) based on agriculture, including wheat and cattle with mining for coal and gas, growing industries.

The Wandoan Accommodation Park, is just off the Leichhardt Highway on a very popular inland route north heading towards tropical Queensland.  The 3.5 acre landscaped Park caters for caravans and camping but also provides 3 to 4 star cabins, suites and apartments for those who prefer to maintain their standards whilst getting back to nature.

Business Needspark wifi

With the rise of mining in the area, the Wandoan Accommodation Park has of late been used to house mining staff while they work on site on a fly in, fly out basis.

It is usual for a fly in, fly out job to involve longer shifts with little recreation facilities available to staff. However to attract and retain staff, accommodation facilities now need to ensure there are improved after hours facilities available.  By and large, Wandoan Accommodation Park provided an excellent base for staff with a pool, restaurant, BBQ’s and more available to while away the hours while working and away from their homes and families.  The one area the Park did not excel in was provision of Park WiFi services.

Due to the construction of the accommodation the buildings (dongas), signal penetration with traditional access points was intermittent at best which lead to poor user experience.

Business Solution Park WiFi

After site visit and review by telecommunications expert Daniel Davis from Darktime Computer Services, coverage plans were produced and once agreed upon, install was undertaken.

park wifi

Product/s Used

2 x A2Ei – 2.4GHz used for client access and 5GHz used for back haul. The Altai A2-Ei WiFi Dual-band Access Point is designed to be used in Altai Super WiFi systems to provide 2.4 and 5 GHz dual-band dual-concurrent access coverage for both outdoor and indoor areas, and to increase system capacity, extend coverage, fill-in areas of low or blocked signals caused by obstructions. It is capable of providing the highest possible data throughput and capacity that the 802.11n standards can offer.

14 x C1n – In back to back mode complementing Altai’s super Wi-Fi base station coverage solution are the C1n high-performance CPEs, which employ a patented smart-signal processing algorithm and an antenna designed to increase Wi-Fi signal strength (transmission and reception) as well as the client’s throughput.

AltaiCare – AltaiCare is a cloud-based network management and service control software system. It is designed for fast and cost saving service provisioning, as well as location-aware content management and big data analytics to help defining sales and marketing strategies based on customer behaviour.

Darktime Computer Services use the system for managing and monitoring the health of the network. Due to the site being a couple of hours away from their offices AltaiCare assists by providing real time vision and reporting. AltaiCare is used by the site owner to manage and control client access, bandwidth and data allowances. Prepaid, subscription and WPA-PSK access provides multiple levels of access to users and site management.

Darktime Computer Services received calls from the park owner commenting on how painless the 2 day installation had been.

Contact Us Today about your Wi-Fi Options

The Wandoan Accommodation Park Wi-Fi was installed by Darktime Computer Services.  Darktime are Wi-Fi, Computer and mobile coverage experts.  They service the Western and Darling Downs Region of Queensland including Chinchilla, Dalby and Condamine.  For more information on this install you can contact Principal Daniel directly on [email protected] or call 07 466 89 991.

Powertec have access to a number of installers across Australia who specialise in Park WiFi among many types of 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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Wi-Fi Training Darwin & Albury for Powertec Partners in May 2016

Powertec Dealer Wi-Fi Training Darwin and Albury in May 2016.

Ongoing Partner training will continue in May 2016 with Wi-Fi training Darwin, NT and Albury, NSW being at the top of our list.

Per normal we will be covering the important areas of Wi-Fi solutions for Accommodation, Education, Farming, Marine, Medical, Public Spaces, and Warehouses (to name a few).

Darwin wi-fi training
Recent Install Wi-Fi Point to Point Set up

At the end of the day you will have a good grounding in the following topics and be able to access Powertec experts for support when required.

  • Initial Wi-Fi Consultation
  • Wi-Fi Site Survey
  • Wi-Fi Installation Options
  • Product Configuration
  • Wireless Microwave
  • Best solutions for licensed and unlicensed frequency bands
  • Point to Point Wireless
  • Point to Multi Point Wireless
  • Mesh
  • Wireless bridges
  • Wi-Fi Access Points

We recommend you come to the session armed with examples within your area, whether warehouse, marine, education, farming, mining, or hospitality Wi-Fi.  We will run through a number of case studies and solutions that you can take back to your clients.

Wi-Fi training Darwin
Recent Install – Farming Wi-Fi Set-up

We will also update you on the latest ideas and products available in Wi-Fi and mobile coverage.

We very much look forward to meeting our Partners in April.  For more information on the event and to book, please go to our booking engine using the links at the top of the page.

If you have any questions about a particular session, you can contact Muir Groves for Wi-Fi training Darwin – [email protected]; or Grant Best for Wi-Fi training Albury – [email protected] Please ensure you register early as we have sold out the last couple of sessions. Catering is provided along with networking opportunities with other business’ in your area.

Pacific Beach Hotel Wi-Fi install

QLD Wi-Fi Training for Powertec Partners in April 2016

Powertec Dealer Wi-fi Training Gold Coast and Toowoomba, Queensland.

Powertec will be continuing Partner training across Australia in 2016 with the Gold Coast and Toowoomba in Queensland taking place in April 2016:

  • Gold Coast Wi-Fi Training 5th April 2016
  • Toowoomba Wi-Fi Training 19th April 2016

Pacific Beach Hotel Wi-Fi installPer normal we will be covering the important areas of:

  • Wireless Site Survey
  • Wireless Installation
  • Product Configuration
  • Wireless Consultancy
  • Wireless Microwave
  • Best solutions for licensed and unlicensed frequency bands
  • Point to Point Wireless
  • Point to Multi Point Wireless
  • Mesh
  • Wireless bridges
  • Wi-Fi Access Points

Hawaii Wi-Fi Beach install

 

The Wi-Fi training will be flexible enough to allow you to interact with our trainer RF Engineer Geoff Carroll and discuss the situations that affect you in your area, whether warehouse, marine, education, farming, mining, or hospitality Wi-Fi.  We will run through a number of case studies and solutions that you can take back to your clients.

We will also update you on the latest ideas and products available in wi-fi and mobile coverage.

We very much look forward to meeting our Queensland Partners in April.  For more information on the event and to book, please go to our booking engine HERE.  Alternatively you can contact Sales Manager Muir Groves on 07 5577 0500 to discuss your options in more detail.

Images from a recent deployment of Altai SuperWiFi in Hawaii

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.

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.

Commentary

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. 

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”