The motto of the NSW Government Office of Sport and Recreation is “More People, More Active, More Often” ….and now they can add “More Wi-Fi” to this slogan.
The Sport and Recreation Department has 11 Centres across NSW, set in the most beautiful scenic river, beach, bush or alpine locations. Visitors can choose from the serene beauty of the Hawkesbury River and Lake Macquarie, to the relaxed banks of Lake Ainsworth, the snow country of Jindabyne and pastoral serenity of Borambola, Lake Burrendong and Lake Keepit. Each Centre offers a variety of activities and programs that take advantage of the unique features of their location and facilities.
Recently the NSW Department of Sport and Recreation decided to completely review their communication systems for sporting/recreation facilities across NSW; some of the sites had basic Wi-Fi giving limited site coverage but in general the existing set-up didn’t cover the requirements of guests or staff.
The planning and install was undertaken by Advanced Communications Riverina with Stephen Hood as the lead contact. Their brief from the client was to update the existing system to achieve full site coverage, including long range Wi-Fi networks, monitor data usage, collect data plus set up a separate corporate network separate from both the visitor and guest networks.
This was a big project with the following sites planned to be updated – and all connecting – with one of the first sites being Sydney Academy in Narrabeen:
- Lake Ainsworth
- Myuna Bay
- Point Wolstoncroft
- Sydney Academy
- Sydney International Regatta Centre
- Sydney International Equestrian Centre
- Sydney International Shooting Centre
- Sport House
- Large size and long range Wi-Fi requirements of the sites; coverage numbers for Wi-Fi use ranged from 250 people per site through to over 1000 at some of the Olympic Venues.
- Foliage/trees limiting RF transmission
- Sarking (building felt fixed over the rafters of a roof underneath tiles of slate) was discovered wrapped around the walls in the building. This is normally just found underneath roof tiles but results in reflecting RF signal away from the buildings.
- Large concrete buildings with bunkers (shooting centre)
The Process and Solution
To manage this large project there were a number of steps needing to be done for each site with the first site being Sydney Academy of Sport in Narabeen. This site was used as the template for moving forward though there were specific challenges to each that needed to be addressed:
Basic steps undertaken for the project included:
- Full consult with the client to understand their networking requirements particularly how they wanted the corporate and guest visitor networks to run.
- On-site survey to determine potential challenges for the outdoor Wi-Fi, the best locations and the equipment needing to be used
- Off-site mapping to determine the best coverage area and planning for the challenges
- Careful integration and testing of VLANS on site.
- Design of public Wi-Fi splash pages for each site, ensuring terms & conditions of client were met.
Network Management Solution
The AltaiCare cloud management system was deployed to provide network management and differing levels of Authentication for Wi-Fi users.
- SSID 1 for general public access internet usage, with monitored bandwidth, data allowance and secure internet access for groups of users.
- SSID 2 was for administrative purposes with a suppressed SSID. Other users will not be able to discover this network and it is the only one that allows access to business equipment utilised by staff. It was routed via the pre-existing Corporate Network
- SSID 3 was the management VLAN for the wireless backhaul, AP and network management.
|SSID||VLAN||Traffic Priority||Authentification||Encryption||Bandwidth Control|
|1||102||Normal||Captive Portal (and optional MAC address)||Open||Multiple Preset Accounts for Bandwidth and Data Allowances|
|2||101||Normal||WPA2-PSK||AES||Corporate Users Via Citrix|
|3||1||Normal||WPA2-PSK||AES||No Bandwidth Control|
AltaiCare Data Management was set up and run as a test at the Narabeen site to finalise management requirements before being rolled out to the remaining sites.
A8n Base Station – The A8n belongs to the A8 series which is the world’s leading 802.11n Wi-Fi outdoor access point optimised for maximum coverage and highest throughput from a minimum number of installation sites. This model has 5 GHz radio upgraded to 802.11a/n/ac standards.
“The true beauty of the Altai products is their performance in the outdoor environment.”
With the client utilising the world’s leading A8n base station, they received the following benefits:
- 8 antenna ports for 4 dual-slant sector antennas, providing flexible 90° to 360° coverage
- 8×8 MIMO combined with Altai’s proprietary smart antenna technology for the best available uniform large-area coverage
- The multiple antennas of A8n series can be configured to provide coverage that is optimised for area, pattern and elevation
- Provides up to 3 times the range and 10 times the area of coverage as compared to standard access points
- 50 cm co-location with 3G/4G cell sites on a single-pole
- Up to 300 Mbps (access) plus 867 Mbps (access/backhaul for ac model) /300 Mbps (access/backhaul for n model) capacity per base station
- Extended reach, with up to a 30 km backhaul range
- Fast and simple installation using a single-pole mount for radios and antennas
- Altai’s AirFi technology for higher capacity and efficiency per WiFi channel
AltaiCare Cloud Network Management Services – The system monitors data usage/limits and the offsite management of all the access points.
- Zero configuration allows a non-technical person to simply unpack and plug APs to WiFi network; the APs will automatically configure
- Owing to AltaiCare’s local breakout architecture and CAPWAP protocol, management data that goes to the cloud is securely encrypted in SSL, while data and control traffic stays local
- Allows IT managers of enterprises to quickly set up secure access for their internal network, as well as provide hotspots to accommodate guest access
- Pay-as-you-grow subscription model of AltaiCare results in lower OPEX
- AltaiCare’s location-aware advertising services enables additional revenue from advertising
Install was undertaken and took 1 week for the first site. Sites following were each different depending on how large they were.
As you would expect from Altai Super Wi-Fi products, the coverage was exceptional and the end result is a happy client.
The coverage is fantastic with the Altai units and the penetration is excellent. Ease of management of the splash page for the end user is very simple.
Stephen Hood, Advanced Communications Riverina
Contact Us Today about your Long Range Wi-Fi Options
This Wi-Fi Installation was undertaken by Advanced Communications Riverina who specialise in business communications via PABX, telephone systems and Wi-Fi. They service the larger regional NSW area and are based in Wagga Wagga.
For more information on this install you can contact Stephen Hood, Unified Communications Sales Adviser directly on [email protected] or call 02 6922 2222.
Powertec have access to a number of installers across Australia who specialise in large area, high traffic outdoor Wi-Fi. For a referral to a local expert on mobile and wi-fi solutions in your area, please contact us at Powertec on 07 5577 0500 or [email protected]