Wireless Mesh Covers New Ground for Weather Network

LOS GATOS, CA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jeju Island, a volcanic island off the coast of Korea and a popular tourist destination, now has a new wireless ubiquitous sensor network (USN) for tracking weather patterns. The network provides not only long-term trend data to weather researchers, but also instant alerts about severe weather to help protect residents and visitors from danger. Deployed by Korea's KT Corp. and integrator LANS Co. Ltd., the project—Phase II of a larger Jeju Island weather monitoring system designed for the Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA)—employs Firetide's advanced wireless mesh networking technologies to unite KMA's IP-based USN devices located on the south half of the island.

Jeju Island occupies a total land area of over 700 square miles, making it the largest Korean island and perhaps the most geographically diverse. Over many thousands of years, volcanic activity has turned the island—Korea's only self-governing province—into a sight-seeing paradise, featuring the grand Mt. Halla and its crater lake at the summit in the interior, and steep slopes of lava rock descending toward its shores. KMA compiles weather data from sensors and video cameras, to make sure public safety officials are always apprised of the conditions on the island.

"While tourists enjoy Jeju's geography, it can present enormous challenges for wireless network development," said Kim Myongjin, project manager for integrator LANS Co. Ltd. "Line-of-sight obstructions are the rule on the island—not the exception - and the distances between isolated communities can be several miles."

Jeju's KMA Phase II efforts presented precisely these challenges. In some cases, weather sensor gateways are positioned as far as 3 miles apart, with line-of-sight obstructions appearing along much of the path. To overcome issues of distance and geography, LANS employed 20 Firetide HotPort dual-radio wireless mesh nodes. "So long as we properly position the mesh nodes at strategic locations, Firetide's wireless mesh easily handles the rest," said Myongjin. "We feel the company's combination of radio strength, wireless compression, and traffic balancing can tackle almost any terrain."

Public safety applications require technologies with low—or preferably no—failure rates. Being self-healing, Firetide wireless mesh can easily detect problems with network nodes and adjust traffic accordingly, ensuring data is always available where and when it's needed. That's one reason KT Corp. chose the Firetide solution as the delivery infrastructure for the network. Proof of strength in challenging environments was another.

"Firetide mesh is very adept at multi hop network environments no matter the landscape," says Hyung-Kuen Ryu, Ph.D., project manager of KT Future Technology Laboratory's Next Generation Internet Research Division. "KT has integrated mesh solutions for various applications, yet we are consistently impressed with the performance and ease-of-use of Firetide's linear mesh and network management system." He said it's also worth noting that "the Firetide system has no problem using IPv6 addressing."

"Each phase of a deployment presents its own unique challenges," said Bo Larsson, chief executive officer of Firetide. "We're very pleased that our system could easily link sensor network gateways over distances of several kilometers with unusual line-of-sight characteristics. We look forward to identifying and meeting the demands of unique new challenges during the next phase of the project."

About Firetide
Firetide Inc. is the leading provider of wireless mesh and access networks that enable concurrent video, voice and data for municipal, public safety and enterprise applications. Firetide HotPort mesh nodes, HotPoint access points, HotClient— CPEs, Firetide Mobility Controller, Firetide WLAN Controller and HotView Pro— network management platform provide a reliable high performance wireless infrastructure and access solution for video surveillance, Internet access, public safety networks and temporary networks wherever rapid deployment, mobility and ease of installation are required. Headquartered in Los Gatos, Calif., Firetide is a privately held company with worldwide product distribution. www.firetide.com.

About KT Corp.
The KT Corporation (KT) is Korea's leading telephone service provider with nationwide coverage for fixed-line communication networks and over 20 million subscribers. KT became a high-speed Internet provider in 1999 and just one year later, in June 2000, the company seized the number one position in this market. This was followed by a landmark achievement in September 2000 when KT subscribers surpassed the one million mark, the highest number ever reached among local telecom players. KT established itself as one of the world's best broadband service providers when its number of subscribers grew to four million by March 2002 and five million by January 2003. KT launched Commercial WiBro (Wireless Broadband) service in Korea on 30th.June.2006.