CIN awarded federal grant for rapidly deployable Large Area WiFi solution

We are excited to share that CIN, in collaboration with Pivotel and Roobuck, has been awarded a $1.5 million grant under the Telecommunications Disaster Resilience Innovation (TDRI) program.

The Australian Government TDRI program promotes the development of new technologies to provide solutions for telecommunications disaster resilience, particularly in our regional, remote and First Nations communities.

This funding will support the next phase of the pilot Large Area WiFi project, an innovative, world-first initiative designed to address the challenge of ubiquitous connectivity through WiFi over a very large area.

Previously funded by CIN in November 2022, this project has already delivered rapidly deployable voice and data services with increased WiFi coverage, incorporating novel WiFi protocols and antenna designs with resilient satellite backhaul. The Large Area WiFi solution is designed to connect operational sites or entire communities when unforeseen events disrupt traditional communication services, providing coverage for up to two square kilometres and supporting up to 100 simultaneous users at speeds of up to 10Mbps per user. This service is also well-suited for underserved communities in regional, rural, and remote areas where connectivity challenges are well-known.

The solution leverages Pivotel’s satellite backhaul services, including LEO satellite constellations OneWeb and Starlink, as well as NBN Co’s Sky Muster, with potential LTE network integration. An SD-WAN solution supports network bonding and Multi-Path Transport Protocol for essential data transmission. Innovative WiFi protocols designed by the University of Sydney address the hidden node problem and enhance long-range high data rates, while unique high-gain and wide-beam antennas designed by the University of Technology Sydney enable high performance over a large area.

UTS Distinguished Professor Jay Guo, CIN’s Technical Director, added, “The Large Area WiFi project leverages CIN’s A’s world-leading capabilities in the connectivity space, particularly in wireless communications and antennas. The earlier success of the previous CIN-funded pilot project exemplifies how Australian universities, industry, and governments can collaborate to tackle national challenges and meet community needs. We are confident that the TDRI grant will propel the technology to the next level, delivering meaningful societal impact.”

For more information on our rapidly deployable Large Area WiFi solution: www.connectivityinnovationnetwork.com/lawifi

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Assoc. Prof. Peiyuan Qin (UTS), Tian Qiu (USYD), Dr Tianyi Zhang (USYD) and Zhaoqi Cui (UTS)

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Tricia Wilson, NSW Business Development Manager at Pivotel Group