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Mike Nydam
18434 Technology Drive
Morgan Hill, CA 95037
Phone: 408.776.2846

Farmington Fire Department deploys AIRAYA licensed 4.9 GHz Public Safety WirelessGRID for multipoint communication system.

Farmington Fire takes advantage of proven AIRAYA public safety products to connect central and remote first responder locations.

Morgan Hill, Calif., USA - April 13, 2006 - AIRAYA, a world-class designer of proven fast and affordable outdoor wireless multipoint and backhaul equipment for high capacity public safety networks, and Farmington Fire partner to deploy a secure licensed county-wide communications system.

Meeting the Remote Connectivity Challenge in Public Safety

One of the many challenges for public safety agencies is the cost-effective and timely deployment of reliable and secure high-speed distribution of data between central and remote locations in their communities.

These networks are typically used for video surveillance and location monitoring, TDM and VoIP voice services, and many types of first responder communication such as centralized database access and broad distribution of shared information.

Historically, wide area networks have been very costly to deploy and service. They require long lead-times for deployment with wireline solutions, and have limited or no availability in many rural areas.

Today, this challenge continues to grow in complexity as communities continue to expand, while budgets remain fixed or decline on a per capita basis.

To compound the problem for those responsible for designing and supporting first responder networks, viable solutions have been limited. This ever-changing landscape requires public safety officials such as Randy Wakeland at Farmington Fire to creatively solve their problem by finding timely, proven, reliable and affordable IP-based WAN solutions.

Farmington Fire Background

The Farmington Fire Department is a non-profit municipal fire department for the City of Farmington, New Mexico, provides Fire/EMS services with 75 firefighters working out of 6 fire stations. Randy Wakeland, the Technology Coordinator for the Farmington Fire Department, was tasked with creating a system to provide reliable IP services to these 6 remote fire stations and other remote monitoring facilities.

Previously, they had experimented with dedicated T-1 phone circuits, then expanded to unlicensed 802.11b WiFi links for their Wide Area Network (WAN). Unfortunately T-1’s didn’t have the needed bandwidth for their client server based applications, and 802.11b didn’t provide the security or reliability required by the department.

“The 802.11b 2.4 GHz spectrum was congested and our links were failing. AIRAYA 4.9 GHz bridges were chosen for our ‘last mile’ links because of price and immediate availability of hardware following the FCC release of the 4.9 GHz frequency band to Public Safety” stated Mr. Wakeland. “AIRAYA’s multipoint base stations were affordable on our limited budget and provided connectivity to multiple stations as well as future mobile apparatus” he added. “The integrated outdoor/indoor bridges also provided connectivity to third party antennas for greater flexibility”.

The AIRAYA WirelessGRID™ Multipoint Solution.

Farmington Fire chose to implement an AIRAYA WirelessGRID™ wireless multipoint system operating in 4.9 GHz, the FCC licensed frequency range reserved for the exclusive use of homeland security/public safety entities in the United States.

Co-locating three (3) base stations operating on different channels allowed for the aggregate capacity needed to operate the system. Outdoor subscriber units installed at each remote station allowed Farmington Fire to connect all locations to the main communication tower, thereby meeting the goals set by the department.

Currently, AIRAYA WirelessGRID™ 4.9 GHz bridges are being used as the primary backbone of the Farmington Fire Department’s PC WAN. They found that the radios were easy to configure and install, and provide links ranging from 2 to 8 miles in a point-to-multipoint configuration with no failures. This infrastructure is also capable of supporting 4.9GHz mobile subscriber units such as their command and special response vehicles, once outfitted.

Through careful capacity planning and system design, this installation meets the city’s current requirement and allows for future expansion.

According to Randy Wakeland, Technology Coordinator for Farmington Fire, “AIRAYA’s equipment is the preferred choice for ‘last mile’ connectivity to these departments. We are very satisfied with AIRAYA products and especially AIRAYA’s technical support.”

Currently, an expanded project is underway for the entire San Juan County, in conjunction with the City of Farmington, to expand their WAN to 14 surrounding County Volunteer Fire Departments.

The AIRAYA advantage: Why AIRAYA?

WirelessGRID™ wireless bridges for public safety are designed to provide reliable IP-based communication in licensed public safety frequency bands. WirelessGRID™ bridges for public safety are also capable of operating in the unlicensed 5.3 GHz, 5.4 GHz (ETSI) and 5.8 GHz unlicensed bands, allowing for expanded capacity beyond the licensed 4.9 GHz band. WirelessGRID™ bridges are FCC Part 90 certified for high power radio operation; support multiple co-located base stations or backhaul links for higher system capacity; and allow exclusive channelization of 5, 10, 15 and 20 MHz in 4.9 GHz. AIRAYA’s exclusive bridge protocol and proprietary radio mask also provide additional layers of security in public safety networks.

The types of services actively being utilized across WirelessGRID™ homeland security public safety networks include private government networks, border patrol, video surveillance and location monitoring, TDM and VoIP voice, and many types of IP data communication.

With more than 5000 installations in more than 50 countries worldwide, AIRAYA WirelessGRID™ bridges provide a proven, timely, safe and cost-effective extension or alternative to xDSL and satellite IP networks, as well as competing wireless solutions.


Founded in 2001, AIRAYA is a world-class designer of proven, fast and affordable outdoor wireless multipoint and backhaul products for high capacity public safety, service provider, and enterprise networks. The company is located in Morgan Hill, California and is privately held.

AIRAYA products are available through a network of experienced North American and International distributors and reseller partners.

For more information, visit the public safety area of AIRAYA’s web site at http://www.airaya.com/markets/publicsafety.asp, email info@airaya.com, or call toll free 1.866.2AIRAYA (224.7292), International 1.408.776.2846.

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