WiBACK Deployment Scenarios

Fraunhofer FOKUS NET4DC

A typical scenario for WiBACK

One or multiple edge nodes connecting to a fixed and reliable network infrastructure are available. These can be provided by a commercial service provider or they can be interfaces to the existing network of an operator.

Located far from these edge nodes, multiple locations require high-quality connections to a voice or data network / the Internet. What “far” means depends on the local situation. In particular, the challenge cannot be easily solved by a simple point-to-point radio-link or by digging cables into the ground.

WiBACK provides the technology to connect infrastructure edge nodes to (many) user access points.

Examples for this deployment include temporary wireless networks for large events, fast network deployment in disaster areas, broadband Internet services for rural areas, and wireless wide-area infrastructures in emerging regions.

Key features that make Fraunhofer’s WiBACK unique are the combination of

  • a wireless network that can span huge distances (several hundred km);
  • provisioning of carrier-grade (guaranteed) service qualities for voice and data traffic;
  • low capital expenditure (CAPEX) due to the use of commercial off-the-shelf hardware (typically IEEE 802.11 mass-market components);
  • low operational cost (OPEX) due to auto-configuration and self-management capabilities, as well as low energy consumption;
  • the possibility to run most nodes in the network on solar energy due to their energy efficient hardware and software, and the integrated solar charger.

WiBACK is not an alternative to a mobile operator network. It provides a transport infrastructure and complements existing technology, rather than replacing it. While WiBACK supports different types of access technologies (including GSM) at the user front-end, it expects an IP-based network at the back-end. Typical mobile-operator services such as roaming or hand-over need to be implemented on-top of WiBACK.