Ermanno Pietrosemoli has set a new record for the longest communication Wi-Fi link .

Posted by Michael Kanellos

ermannominiatura.jpegResearcher Ermanno Pietrosemoli has set what appears to be a new record for the longest communication link with Wi-Fi.

Pietrosemoli, president of the Escuela Latinoamerica de Redes (which means networking school of Latin America) established a Wi-Fi link between two computers located in El Aguila and Platillon Mountain, Venezuela. That’s a distance of 382 kilometers, or 238 miles. He used technology from Intel, which is concocting its own long-range Wi-Fi equipment, and some off-the-shelf parts. Pietrosemoli gets about 3 megabits per second in each direction on his long range connections.

Most Wi-Fi signals only go a few meters before petering out. Conventional WiFi transmitters, however, transmit signals in all directions. By directing the signal to a specific point, range can be increased.

Honing the signal, however, means that the receiver and transmitter have to be aligned. Trees, buildings and other objects that get between them can sever the link. The curvature of the earth, mis-alignment between the transmitter and receiver, as well as shaking and any sort of movement at the transmitting or receiving end can also impair the signal. (To ameliorate some of these factors, Intel has created a way to electrically steer the signal, which in turn increases bandwidth.)

Geography was on Pietrosemoli’s side. El Aguila and Platillon Mountain sit in the Andes, which form fairly jagged peaks in this part of the range.

The old record was 310 kilometers. Swedish scientists made a link between a balloon and an earth-bound station. We say “apparently’ on Pietrosemoli’s record in case there’s someone out there we haven’t heard of that?s done better.

More details can be found in an article at the web site for The Association for Progressive Communcations. (Mark Summer, co-founder of Inveneo, which is trying to bring PCs to emerging markets, co-founder told us about Pietrosemoli’s achievement.)

Intel along with organizations like Inveneo are testing the feasibility of long-range Wi-Fi as a communication link in Uganda and other emerging nations. Long-range Wi-Fi isn’t as robust at WiMax, but the towers cost a lot less. Some hobbyists have done long range Wi-Fi, but with low bandwidth.

There are experiments going on in the U.S. as well. A long-range Wi-Fi link connects Intel’s Berkeley lab and a lab in Sun Microsystems on the Peninsula more than twenty miles away on the Peninsula.

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2 comentarios

  1. This is great news.
    There are a lot of areas on the globe where the geography causes a lot of difficulties to provide an adsl connection by wire.

    Let’s hope that Intel and Inveneo can cum up with a feasible system in short time..it would really help communicating in the above mentioned areas.

  2. Hello

    Well we have done one longer flight in 2005 and reach 420 Km width our WiFi equipment.

    http://www.ssc.se/?id=7117

    The 10 000 m³ balloon type Zodiac 10 ZL, was successfully launched at 15:21 UTC on the 22 of March.The balloon reached an altitude of 28,5 km after 1 ½ hour of flight time.
    The cut down command was given at 19:40 UTC and the landing took place 43 km west of the village of Vilhelmina. The range of the high speed data link was more than 400 km.

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