http://www.engineeringnews.co.za
  SEARCH
Login
R/€ = 13.04Change: -0.16
R/$ = 12.07Change: -0.10
Au 1204.60 $/ozChange: 1.40
Pt 1170.50 $/ozChange: 4.00
 
 
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?








Start
 
End
 
 
And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
 
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Letters Contact Us
 
 
 
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
 
 
Apr 12, 2013

Trial connects ten Cape schools to Web using ‘television white spaces’

Back
Cape Town|Africa|Building|Education|Industrial|Projects|Systems|Africa|South Africa|Meraka Institute|Broadband Internet Access|Correct Hardware|Education Services|Egovernance Services|Internet Using Television White Spaces|Service|Services|Systems|Ntsibane Ntlatlapa|Power|Broadband|Time-division Multiplexing
|Africa|Building|Education|Industrial|Projects|Systems|Africa|||Service|Services|Systems|Power|
cape-town|africa-company|building|education-company|industrial|projects|systems-company|africa|south-africa|meraka-institute-facility|broadband-internet-access|correct-hardware|education-services|egovernance-services|internet-using-television-white-spaces|service|services|systems|ntsibane-ntlatlapa|power|broadband|timedivision-multiplexing
© Reuse this



Ten schools in the Cape Town area have been connected to the Internet at speeds of 4 MB/s using unused ultra-high frequency spectrum between 480 MHz and 690 MHz reserved for television broadcasting, says Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) Meraka Institute manager Dr Ntsibane Ntlatlapa.

The ten schools are participating in the first trial in South Africa to study the effects of connecting and the potential to connect underserviced regions to the Internet using television white spaces (TVWSes), which comprises the currently unused frequencies reserved for television broadcasting. Unused frequencies vary, depending on regions, channels and time of day.

A second trial will aim to demonstrate the use of TVWSes to connect rural regions in Limpopo.

A possible third trial will involve machine-to-machine communication and possible remote meter reading using TVWS frequencies in a time-division multiplexing format, where different signals are sent at different times, or the study of the functionality and use of TVWS channels with regard to machines only sending signals periodically.

The Meraka Institute is studying several different concepts, including the interference of such TVWS connections with frequencies in use, the use of existing television antennae to connect rural and township residents to the Internet and the effective ranges of TVWS broadband connections, he says.

The Department of Communications has issued a licence to Meraka, which enables the institute to conduct studies of these TVWS frequencies in the Cape Town region.

TVWSes are more abundant in rural areas, owing to fewer television channels broadcasting to these regions; therefore, more TVWSes are available to deliver services.

Further, TVWSes are significantly cheaper to use than 2.6 GHz frequencies because the signal travels farther using the same power for transmission. This may enable easier entry for new users, such as broadband service providers or content distributors, in different regions, says Ntlatlapa.

Much of TVWS research pertains to future applications of the frequencies, specifically to provide channels to distribute education services, to enable egovernance services, including rural municipalities having direct communication channels to residents and rural residents interfacing with the Department of Home Affairs without travelling great dis- tances, and to provide entertainment, broadband Internet access and connectivity to more people in South Africa.

“An antenna is not only a receiver and, with the correct hardware, every house’s antenna can be connected to a base station. However, we have several research projects at Meraka to iron out the details and applicability of different technologies,” he notes.

The purpose of the study, however, is to help the Department of Communication to draw up regulations for the use of TVWSes by licensed operators, he says.

Dynamic Access
Operators currently lease spectrum, such as that monitored by Meraka, over fixed ranges according to spectrum databases. However, Meraka has conducted several studies on newer technologies, specifically dynamic access and beaconing.

Dynamic access involves base stations searching for unused frequencies and providing services to connected devices on these unused frequencies.

Beaconing searches for channels used by other base stations and, using a complex algorithm, determines how the different channels will be used by base stations should possible interference be probable. A PhD researcher at the CSIR has developed a viable algorithm for this emerging technology.

Further, the capabilities provided by improved connectivity in rural and remote areas should foster the development of more industry and businesses in these regions, he adds.

“There is now a demand for this TVWS spectrum to deliver improved WiFi-like systems for broadband; these devices are known as white space devices. White space devices are based on a combination of spectrum sensing, geolocation and beacon techniques for interference avoidance,” Ntlatlapa notes.

These frequency bands are attractive to potential broadband users owing to the availability of a large amount of spectrum that can be used to provide connectivity, propagation qualities that provide for non-line-of-sight performance and in-building penetration, as well as large coverage areas, thanks to the long-range propagation of the signal at these frequencies.

The Meraka Institute’s research will help the Department of Communication to develop effective regulations for using the TVWS spectrum in South Africa; it may also have future implications for the licensing, use and sharing of spectrum for all telecommunications, he concludes.

Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Other ICT News
The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) on Friday published the findings of a discussion document on South Africa’s television and radio local content environment. Icasa last year requested industry input as it reviewed and revamped...
South Africa is progressing its ambitions of transitioning from analogue to digital radio broadcasting as two 12-month-long trials make headway in efforts to establish a starting base to keep radio relevant in a digital age. The trials evaluating the DRM and DAB+...
Communications Minister Faith Muthambi
Communications Minister Faith Muthambi on Friday placed an 18-month deadline on the implementation of South Africa’s migration from analogue to digital broadcasting – despite no digital switch-on and analogue switch-off dates having been set yet. Speaking on the...
More
 
 
Latest News
Two influential US senators, central to the so-called ‘chicken war’, have announced their intention to pursue amendments to the African Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa) to secure greater access for US poultry into the SA market. “We believe passionately in Agoa’s...
The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) on Friday published the findings of a discussion document on South Africa’s television and radio local content environment. Icasa last year requested industry input as it reviewed and revamped...
Buying the catering unit of cash-strapped state airline South African Airways (SAA) could work for Bidvest Group, its chief executive said on Friday. SAA is considering selling some of its units including its inflight and airport lounge catering business, Air Chefs,...
More
 
 
Recent Research Reports
Steel 2015: A review of South Africa's steel sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Steel 2015 report provides an overview of the key developments in the global steel industry and particularly of South Africa’s steel sector over the past year, including details of production and consumption, as well as the country's primary carbon...
Projects in Progress 2015 - First Edition (PDF Report)
In fact, this edition of Creamer Media’s Projects in Progress 2015 supplement tracks developments taking place under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, which has had four bidding rounds. It appears to remain a shining light on the...
Electricity 2015: A review of South Africa's electricity sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Electricity 2015 report provides an overview of State-owned power utility Eskom and independent power producers, as well as electricity planning, transmission, distribution and the theft thereof, besides other issues.
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
 
 
 
 
 
This Week's Magazine
Today’s organisations execute projects within increasingly complex environments – particularly in the engineering sector. The ability to successfully execute these projects is what drives the realisation of successful projects and, ultimately, the achievement of...
SMART DISTRIBUTION Providing funds to introduce smart grid technologies in the absence of a clearly defined strategy will not result in the desired outcome
South Africa’s distribution grid is a twentieth-century relic, which must be changed to serve the country’s modern electricity needs, says South African National Energy Development Institute (Sanedi) Smart Grid Programme manager Dr Minnesh Bipath. “What we are...
There is a disparity in government funding provided to integrated transport networks – bus rapid transit (BRT) networks ¬¬– and that given to conventional bus services, says Putco executive director Thys Heyns. “We have neglected and strangled conventional bus...
The Johannesburg Social Housing Company (Joshco) is building 502 rental housing units, valued at R200-million, in Dobsonville, Soweto, which are scheduled for completion in June 2016.
Automotive component manufacturer and distributor Metair is centralising its research and development (R&D) work in Turkey, in an attempt to bolster the company’s ability to produce affordable start/stop batteries. The new R&D centre is part of an expansion plan in...
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
content
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
 
 
Close
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks
Subscribe Now for $96 Close
Subscribe Now for $96