Washburn U Deploys Xirrus 802.11n WiFi Arrays

Washburn University in Topeka, KS has deployed a Xirrus 802.11n WiFi array in multiple buildings, including all of its dorms.

"To improve the connectivity and flexibility of our students, faculty, and staff we set out to deploy a high performance 802.11n network across our 160-acre campus," said Kevin Halgren, assistant director of information systems and services (ISS) at the university. "We researched and tested multiple WiFi architectures, but found only one vendor capable of delivering the bandwidth and throughput to support our high density classrooms, lecture halls, and dorms--Xirrus."

"Xirrus' 802.11n WiFi Arrays are drastically different from traditional access points, which are chained to distant closet controllers," Halgren said. "By integrating 4, 8, 12, 16, and 24 radios with a multi-gigabit switch into a single device, the Xirrus Arrays allow us to efficiently deploy more radios to cover more users than access points from other vendors. For example, we recently installed nine Xirrus 802.11n WiFi arrays covering all five floors of the Living Learning Center, delivering over 16Gbps of high speed WiFi bandwidth for 400 students--that's 56 radios with only seven capable drops--impressive."

Washburn has about 6,900 students. According to a report given by ISS to the board of regents earlier this year, the university was expected to spend about $97,000 on the campus deployment. Other higher education users of Xirrus equipment include Carnegie Mellon University, Chapman University, and Florida State University.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at dian@dischaffhauser.com or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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