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Michigan Tech Uses Ethernet Radio To Bridge Campus Network

Michigan Technological University has implemented 80 GHz millimeter wave systems from BridgeWave Communications to connect remote buildings across the Portage shipping canal.

The university previously used unlicensed microwave links to connect the remote buildings, but increased demand, such as large research data files and 24-hour streams from security cameras, led to interference issues.

Michigan Tech installed a combination of BridgeWave's AR80-AES, AR80X, and FE80U systems, allowing the university to implement the gigabit wireless Ethernet bridges in less than two days each and avoid trenching under the canal.

The speed of the connections, which feature a secure narrow antenna beam width and Advanced Encryption Standard, has also allowed the IT department to consolidate campus servers while eliminating bandwidth bottlenecks and providing remote users with the same network experience as central users.

"BridgeWave's gigabit Ethernet radios have solved our connectivity needs for sites that were difficult and costly to service with fiber," said Michigan Tech's Senior Telecommunications Engineer Shane Godmere. "Their products have provided us with carrier-grade connectivity, high availability, and worked well within our budget. My team is thrilled with the time we've gotten back that was once wasted troubleshooting. BridgeWave's links have given my team peace of mind that our network won’t go down or experience radio frequency interference. We’ve been able to organize campus IT departments into larger units and, now, services are running out of two main datacenters instead of multiple ones scattered across the campus."

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About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at [email protected].

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