Sightlines Not Required

By Amanda Kowalik   March 19, 2014

When we think of wireless broadband, we imagine installations without limits. Distance, water, mountains and foliage should be no hindrance to connectivity. This is why Cambium Networks focuses on bringing wireless broadband to where it’s most difficult, and has been deploying its products in non-line-of-sight (NLOS) situations for a decade. NLOS and nLOS (near line of sight) are nothing new to us, and we have demonstrable expertise in these physically challenging deployments.

Illustrating this is an installation we did for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Our PTP 600 connects NOAA’s underwater lab, Aquarius, to a buoy sixty feet up on the ocean surface, to the National Undersea Research Center located nine miles from the buoy on Key Largo. Previously, NOAA’s wireless link had become too slow to stream live video and communication was choppy, often crashing the servers. The lab needed to triple its bandwidth while increasing the link’s reliability as Aquarius streams live video feeds not only to the research center, but also to media broadcasters and classrooms around the world.

“When reliability is critical and one of your endpoints is a 30-foot (9-meter) buoy on the open sea, you need to have a very reliable system or you could find yourself on that buoy at any time of day and in any weather conditions. The PTP 600 was the only solution that could provide a high-performance, carrier-grade connection in this environment,” said Dominic Landucci, National Undersea Research Center.

NOAA’s new Cambium equipment enables throughput 10-15x greater than the 2-4 Mbps it was experiencing before, giving it enough throughput to deploy a new video conference link between NASA’s international space station and Aquarius – how’s that for NLOS? To read the case study, click here, and to see how Aquarius is using our connectivity, watch this video.