DragonWave Inc.

DragonWave Inc.

March 10, 2009 07:30 ET

DragonWave Wireless Backhaul Equipment Helps Bring High-Speed Broadband Access to Rural Georgia

Horizon Compact radios used in five-county network that brings area to top 1% in world in speed and level of access

OTTAWA, CANADA--(Marketwire - March 10, 2009) - DragonWave Inc. (TSX:DWI) a global supplier of high-capacity, wireless native Ethernet backhaul solutions for mobile and access networks, today announced that the South Georgia Regional Information Technology Authority (SGRITA) has deployed DragonWave's Horizon Compact radios in a state-of-the-art broadband network throughout Baker, Calhoun, Early, Miller and Mitchell counties in South Georgia.

Phase I of the network is now complete using DragonWave's Horizon Compact radios on 25 towers, stretching across five counties and covering 2,000 sq miles, providing 190 Mbps of capacity to the region. SGRITA is now able to provide high-speed internet service to area industry, government offices, schools, public safety professionals and other interests. The network is designed to attract industry to the region as well. Applications include VOIP, content filtering and distance learning. Previously, the region was underserved in broadband capacity or had no broadband access at all.

SGRITA founders recognize that technology is increasingly important for education, health, safety, communication, and economic competitiveness. "We believe in wireless solutions for rural broadband deployments," said Lee Conner, Director of SGRITA. "Wireless backhaul presents an affordable and, what we believe to be a more reliable solution. Before deploying this network, our schools were in the bottom 8% in terms of access capability in comparison to the rest of the country. We're now in the top 1% in the world in terms of speed and level of access"

A greenfield deployment, the SGRITA project posed unique challenges to network design in terms of climate. Southern Georgia's sub-tropical climate offers days where 100% humidity is normal and the Gulf of Mexico brings daily thunderstorms or even hurricanes with the potential for lightning and rainfall of two inches or more per hour. "DragonWave's products have the ability to reliably cut through the humid sub-tropic climate of South Georgia," said Dustin Springman, SGRITA's Network Operations Manager. "With the product's adaptive modulation, to date we have had 100% uptime through some of the most severe South Georgia lightning storms. The performance can be considered nothing less than carrier class, and the reliability speaks for itself."

"The mechanical aspects of the Horizon Compact radio configuration show careful design and thought not only from an engineer's point of view, but also from an integrator and operator perspective," comments Springman. "The product's design makes the cost of maintenance much lower."


Founded in 2007, SGRITA's work was funded with grants from OneGeorgia, and direct and in-kind contributions by each of the five participating counties. Phase II of the project will distribute the network further into the field and will take place over the next one to two years. http://www.sgrita.org/

About DragonWave

DragonWave™ is a leading provider of high-capacity wireless Ethernet equipment used in emerging IP networks. DragonWave designs, develops, and markets carrier-grade microwave radio frequency networking equipment that wirelessly transmit broadband voice, video and other data. DragonWave's wireless Ethernet products, which are based on a native Ethernet platform, function as a wireless extension to an existing fibre-optic core telecommunications network. The principal application for DragonWave's products is the backhaul function in a wireless communications network. Additional applications for DragonWave's products include point-to-point transport in private networks, including municipal and enterprise networks. DragonWave's corporate headquarters is located in Ottawa, Ontario, with sales locations in Europe, Middle East and North America. The company's Web site is http://www.dragonwaveinc.com

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