Nortel Wireless Mesh Boosts Broadband for Patmos Islanders
Broadband Everywhere Aids Patmos Economy
PATMOS – The 3,000 plus islanders of Patmos and its thousands of visitors will soon have the convenience of island-wide free mobile networking delivered by joint venture Uni Nortel using a Nortel* [NYSE/TSX: NT] wireless mesh solution. Uni Nortel is a joint venture in Greece between Nortel and Unisystems, an IT company and leading Systems Integrator.
Patmos, located in the Dodecanese chain of islands in the Aegean Sea, is a global tourist magnet. The monastery of St. John the Theologian founded in 1088 is located on the island and is a place of pilgrimage and Greek Orthodox learning.
The Nortel wireless mesh solution for Patmos – jointly developed in the Media Lab of MIT and the Nortel Solutions Interoperability Laboratory in North Carolina – will be launched this summer to provide wireless broadband and Internet access services across the island. The network includes user-friendly hotzones and indoor Wi-Fi, all delivered with minimal capital expense using Nortel’s affordable mesh technology.
The Patmos wirefree project was initiated under the leadership of Nicholas Negroponte, co-founder and former chairman of the MIT Media Lab, and Michail Bletsas while both were at the Lab. The project is being implemented by local Internet Service Provider (ISP) 12Net working with Uni Nortel which is responsible for the commissioning, design and installation of the network.
Negroponte has a home on Patmos and visits often. In the 1990s his inability to get Internet access prompted him to set up a local dialup Internet service provider – ISP 12Net. In 2001, Bletsas, then research scientist and director of computing at the Media Lab, researched the possibility of providing broadband Internet connectivity to Patmos. Bletsas’ paper “Wirefree in Patmos” was published in the BT Technology Journal in October 2004.
“With the support of Uni Nortel and 12Net, the Wirefree Patmos we envisioned is coming to fruition and the fact that we’ve used a Nortel Wireless Mesh Network solution to do this is exciting because we contributed to its development,” says Bletsas.
The network will deliver the benefits of broadband Internet access across the island and offer access for visitors. This will boost the island’s tourist trade by providing new communications options such as the ability for visitors to keep up with news from home by watching streaming videocasts online. In the Patmos school year starting September 2008, high school teachers and students on Patmos and its surrounding islands will be able to use the new network to access on-line educational resources.
“The Patmos network provides affordable wireless access achieved cost-effectively,” adds Kostis Stavropoulos, managing director, Uni Nortel.
Initially the Patmos network will use eight core nodes wirelessly connected with a Nortel Wireless Bridge 7230 and 50 Nortel WP7220 and WP7215 Access nodes, covering the major area of the island. Nortel was ranked second in wireless mesh market share by Infonetics (Q4’07).
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*Nortel, the Nortel logo and the Globemark are trademarks of Nortel Networks.
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