Sunday, May 22, 2011

Closing the Tech Gap

Ciena Corporation, a network specialist partnering with Telamon Corporation, a distributor, system integrator and reseller of telecommunication products, is bringing high-speed broadband access and 4G wireless services to the Navajo Nation. The need for the technology was initiated by the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority (NTUA) a non-profit, multi-utility company that provides services to the Navajo Nation spanning over 27,000 square miles in Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah.

The NTUA project is intended to enable area service providers to deliver affordable voice, video, data and cellular services to nearly 30,000 households, 1,000 businesses, and an additional 1,100 anchor institutions, including 49 Chapter Houses that serve as community centers.

Stimulus funding was made available through NTIA’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program. This new next generation network will include 550 miles of new aerial giver-optic cable and 59 new or modified microwave towers. “The project will certainly close the wireless technological gap that currently exists here in the southwest. This improvement will open many doors that will bring progress to our region,” said Walter Haase, NTUA General Manager.

The Navajo Nation’s new converged optical Ethernet network will be connected by Ciena’s suite of packet-optical transport and Carrier Ethernet solutions. Ciena’s network management software will provide the “middle mile” service architecture.

Last mile wireless services will be offered at speeds between 1 and 3Mbps through the project’s wireless partner Commnet Wireless, LLC. The new network will enable public safety, health, social services, and emergency care facilities as well as local government and administration offices to deliver distance learning, telemedicine, security monitoring, SCADA services, and other advanced applications not possible with the current infrastructure.

“Together with Telamon, we’re building a high-speed packet optical network that will spur economic growth by improving internet access for the Navajo Nation,” said Theresa Caragol, Vice President, Global Alliances and Partners at Ciena. “As grant money from the Recovery and Reinvestment Act starts to flow through projects like the NTUA, this will have a positive and lasting impact on America’s communities for years to come.”

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