Sestriere Boosts Ski Operation with Motorola Wireless Solution
Italian Ski Resort Deploys Fixed Wireless Broadband to Bolster Operations and Provide Platform for Future Applications
Piedmont, Italy - Motorola, Inc. (NYSE: MOT) announced that the Sestrieres SpA ski resort in Italy has implemented its 400 Series fixed point-to-multipoint (PMP) wireless broadband technology. The solution provides a high-speed platform for a distributed data access system and other key applications such as VoIP and Webcam. The technology will be implemented by Motorola partners BPG Radiocomunicazioni and ICA-NET.
Sestriere is a mountain village situated about 70km west of the provincial capital of Turin, in the most western part of Italy. It attracts thousands of visitors annually and has become one of the foremost resorts of its kind, being the venue for countless alpine skiing and snowboarding events including races during the 2006 Winter Olympics.
The entire ski area, also known as Vialattea, offers more than 400 km of ski runs that are accessed via a network of technologically advanced cableways and ski lifts that demand around-the-clock monitoring and maintenance to ensure the smooth running of this vast operation.
To assist with trouble-shooting and to streamline processes across the resort, Sestrieres SpA, the company operating the Vialattea resort, sought a solution that would bolster communications by providing a sophisticated platform on which to link vital applications such as video-based monitoring, data transfer to and from ‘skipass’ access areas and cost-effective VoIP. Various networking solutions were considered and after optic fibre cabling was eliminated due to the inherent high costs, a number of wireless technologies were evaluated, resulting in Motorola’s solution being chosen.
“Sestriere is one of the most reputable resorts in Europe that covers a vast area and requires quick and seamless communication. The PMP 400 wireless broadband system helps enable staff to quickly and effectively solve issues ensuring the smooth running of the entire resort,” said Henrik Asbjorn, vice president Channel Growth Operations, Motorola Government & Public Safety, EMEA.
The PMP 400 Series fixed wireless broadband system of access points and subscriber modules operates in the 5.4 GHz spectrum and offers throughputs of up to 21Mbps, with a range of up to approximately eight kilometers. Based on Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiplexing (OFDM) technology, which provides improved near-line of sight (nLOS) coverage, the 400 Series allows service providers and enterprise network owners to extend broadband network coverage into areas where obstructions and foliage have limited system expansion.
Historically, troubleshooting and maintenance of the resort’s facilities involved technicians having to walk, drive or take ski lifts to specific hot spots. The labour- intensive method resulted in unnecessary periods of downtime, while data collection from the skipass access areas was done manually using USB dongles or via GPRS, which was not available across the entire operation. This was exacerbated by adverse weather conditions whereby personnel had to wait days to gain access to specific areas of the resort.
Now a technician can troubleshoot and gain access to system data by remotely logging into the Skilift Control System via the wireless network. It also allows for weather monitoring via webcam and has reduced the cost of telephone calls through the introduction of VoIP.
Future applications include wireless broadband access for ski patrols and medical services, extending the coverage of a planned digital two-way radio system (analogue and mobile phones are currently being used) and to enhance advertising through remote access to onsite billboards.
Vittorio Salusso, director of operations at Sestrieres SpA said: “We expect the wireless network to provide a quick return on investment as it allows us to manage our operation remotely, which has boosted efficiency significantly. And from an expansion point of view, the networking equipment is compact in size, making it easy to install while high scalability and large bandwidth supports many users and new applications.”
Motorola is known around the world for innovation in communications and is focused on advancing the way the world connects. From broadband communications infrastructure, enterprise mobility and public safety solutions to high-definition video and mobile devices, Motorola is leading the next wave of innovations that enable people, enterprises and governments to be more connected and more mobile. Motorola (NYSE: MOT) had sales of US $30.1 billion in 2008. For more information, please visit www.motorola.com.
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