The CSIRO says its Ngara fixed wireless technology could provide coverage of rural areas with as few as one quarter the number of towers required by other systems. It could be used by the NBN in rural areas.
To be demonstrated this week, the CSIRO's Ngara wireless broadband technology has been designed to make efficient use of TV channels freed up with the ending of analogue transmissions. The prototype can deliver a symmetrical 12Mbps service to six simultaneous users over one 7MHz TV channel
"We feel symmetry is important as people interact more using bandwidth-hungry applications such as video conferencing – they could be working from home, participating in a lesson or visiting their doctor online," said CSIRO ICT Centre director Ian Oppermann. "It's easy to see how these services would be particularly valuable in rural areas."
Ngara is said to be one of the most spectrally efficient in the world, achieving 20 bits per second per Hertz (b/s/Hz). For comparison, 802.11n Wi-Fi manages just over 7 b/s/Hz.
The technology is specifically for fixed installations, with the signal being shaped to reach specific locations. CSIRO wants Ngara to be applied to deliver the NBN to some locations outside the fibre footprint, using existing broadcasting towers.
See also CSIRO demos 12Mbps symmetrical NBN wireless technology.