Oregon Redundant Backhauls Case Study

Episode 2 of “Mesh it Up!” features an example of redundant backhauls using Althea, narrated by Deborah Simpier, CEO of Althea and network operator of Clatskanie co-op. www.althea.net Join us on Discord – https://discord.gg/NbK3Uu3‚Äč Twitter – @altheanetwork

Transcript of video needs editing

hello i am deborah simpier i am the ceo
of althea we
are a platform and tools for community
networks
um and i’m also the
um what we call a network operator for
our network here in my town of klotzkani
oregon
and the network operators function is is
just to be
the manager and support and kind of
curate and manage networks
and in this case this particular network
is organized as a legal cooperative
um so these um people who subscribe to
our internet service provider are um
all all members all voting members um
here
and um kind of the neat thing that
althea enables us to do is actually use
private property
to locate vertical assets and to build
networks in a kind of an agile and
dynamic way as we’ll see in this video
um instead of just using large vertical
assets
um so this video is part of the mesh it
up series
and focuses on different kinds of
network topology
in althea networks and what i’d like to
share
with you here is the um
is is different ways that we can look at
interconnecting wireless
backhauls so for contacts a
backhaul is a wholesale fiber connection
you can see here along here this this
yellow is uh is a is a major highway
that kind of
runs through the wooded area um
here um and this is actually there’s
quite a few fiber providers that provide
wholesale access along here um
but most of the rest of this area is you
know
not served by anything except for for
like an althea network or
there is a little bit of fiber kind of
built out here in these these back hills
here
so what we’ve done is we located a what
we call a gateway which is just the uh
the
kind of head end or the fiber
demarcation point
um here in the marshland area the
woodson area and then one in the center
of town and klotzkanai
and then through a kind of redundant
relay system
we have set up interconnection so that
everyone
that’s either uh connected along
um this kind of relay path or along this
relay path
if one of these links were to be
disconnected or there’s some trouble
they would all
fail back the entire network actually
fails back over to
the the other fiber provider and this is
this is really important and actually
kind of a salient point right
right now because for example one of the
other major
carriers in this area century link has
been down now for
you know uh over i think five days
because some of the because of issues
with their fiber lines so fiber cuts do
happen
um and you know we have two different
fiber providers providing these links
here so
it makes for a much more resilient um
network
um so let’s kind of get into what we’re
looking at here and kind of just the
topology of the area
anyway you can see that this area is
very heavily wooded
has lots of trees let’s see we can even
come down here and
take a look with the street view and
give you kind of an idea about
what uh what classical night looks like
in terms of of obstacles and so forth
as you can see this is the pacific
northwest we have lots of large trees
um new stands of these that we grow
cottonwoods here
for paper products and you have a lot of
these kind of
large hilled areas as well and so there
are no wireless out there that goes
through mountains
um so what’s really exciting about what
althea lets you do is is that we can
locate it kind of like across
private property and then go around the
hills and back through corners where
um with a traditional fixed wireless
system
you would sort of be limited to whatever
you could see from that particular
hillside
and if you can kind of envision if you
had let’s say one
relay here you could get all of this
excuse me one large traditional type of
legacy tower
you could maybe get these customers here
but not necessarily these customers over
here
um so that’s what’s really exciting and
um as an aside that was kind of one of
the really exciting things that we were
able to do is actually
through this relay system here provide
access to all of these kind of customers
along in this little spit area
and that link was created from the
gateway
to this major relay here from the major
relay to another relay here
from that relay all the way out here
to um the waterfront and then from the
waterfront over to these sections of
houses which
was not possible and these folks had
only satellite internet prior to
our solution so
what this this uh what this link looks
like here
um and just for folks’s privacy we’ve
given just sort of general locations
these aren’t uh specific locations for
these relay points um but right here on
top of this
hillside we have you know what we call
like a super hub right so this seats not
kind of
only out into this area and down over
here
but also allows a lot of the folks on
this adjacent hillside to have
connectivity
and i think they probably have about
seven or
actually probably closer to ten
connected clients and the great thing
about althea is that
this um this is this is just a household
a farm here on top of the hill
and um they kind of came together and
helped build out some of that
um the mast and came with the excavator
and and helped us sort of build out that
um relay point there but then they also
earned credit off their bill for being
part of the
literally part of the infrastructure of
the network um which is pretty exciting
i think they pre
pretty much close to nothing for their
internet a month and they may actually
be positive by a few dollars
so then from from there we have um
a uh a prism station that’s facing out
into this part of town that’s a ubiquity
access point and um then out
over over here we have a point to point
um across this uh let’s see here if we
can
see how long this is this is about five
miles
um link
down over to where we essentially have
someone’s home here who is connected
back back to here now the key here is
that this home
also in this area also has and like i
said again these are generalized areas
so
um they have one connecting cpe antenna
and then they have an outgoing antenna
to this other relay
who also has two connecting antennas as
well
so this other relay down by the water
also serves some of these people here
as you can see they’re sort of locked by
these main
um you know large cot stands of
cottonwoods which
i think these trees can be anywhere from
25 to 100 feet tall
these are these are blocking trees um
and then from this relay um to another
relay here
and then finally back across the highway
um
this area this kind of um this is um
affectionately
considered to be called the mar
especially the marshland area
right it’s a low-lying area and the
fiber only had run
on the other side of the street because
of some railroad tracks
so this is another kind of point of
flexibility we were able to kind of make
this hop
across the highway um you know really
just kind of in this little narrow
window of trees
um and then provide connectivity to this
entire area
um and from you know these kind of
interconnected relays this is back to
where we also have another fiber here so
um if um
[Music]
if one of the like for example if this
link got severed
between us and the gateway or the
gateway lost um you know
fiber connectivity along here then
this entire network all of the people
connected to the relays here would fail
back
um or excuse me all of everyone
connected to her
here at this top relay here would then
fail back
to this other
wholesale point
um let’s see if we can’t kind of take a
look at what those
tall kind of trees look like give you an
idea of what we’re up against here
classical night is a beautiful place to
live it doesn’t really give you a sense
of how tall these trees are but
these are trees that are farmed for uh
paper products
um and then you can kind of get a sense
of what um you can see there’s that
railroad tracks and that’s why the
the point of no fiber passed past that
so only fiber was laid along this side
of the
of the highway here um kind of get the
the challenges and then let’s see kind
of looking back over this way as well
you’re gonna you would see
up over here you can’t you can’t
obviously see it but up
way over here about five miles away is
where that other kind of super hub is
going to be back into town
and uh yeah this also kind of gives you
an idea of the kind of lay of the land
here you see these kind of tall hills
and so forth so
i think that is it thanks so much folks
[Music]
bye