March 10, 2004

HPWREN increases network robustness with a third FCC-licensed link

A new 6GHz-band licensed link beween Mt. Woodson and the Cuyamaca mountains has replaced an earlier 5.8GHz license-exempt one. This now extends HPWREN licensed connectivity from the coast to the mountains in the San Diego region. The installation was organized and executed by Bud and Jim Hale, and the actual work also involved Pablo Bryant and Mark VanScoy of the San Diego State University's Field Station Programs, as well as Todd Hansen and Hans-Werner Braun.

SDSU's Pablo Bryant and Mark VanScoy doing antenna work

Pablo Bryant and Mark VanScoy guiding the old eight-foot antenna down.

Following significant planning activities due to having to consider unrelated recent installations on the tower, the initial work at Mt. Woodson included the removal of the old equipment, and carefully guiding down the existing eight-foot 5.8GHz antenna. The radio's outdoor unit was installed at an initial tower location, and the antenna cable pulled to the communications trailer.

Moving the new antenna

On a different day, the team moved to the Cuyamaca mountains installation site, removed the old six foot 5.8GHz antenna and cable, and installed the new equipment.

The mountain top location was in a major area of last year's Cedar fire, and the radome of the old six-foot antenna had been consumed during the fire.

Todd Hansen relalacing the melted cable

The cable to the old antenna had partially melted in the fire. Given the upcoming 6GHz installation, the team had previously deferred the replacement. Todd Hansen is showing the old cable, which he was about to replace.

The new licensed radio consists of an indoor unit in the communications building, and an outdoor unit on the tower. Both are interconnected via a coaxial cable.

Jim Hale preparing antenna cables

The antenna cables are cut to the right length, and Jim Hale is soldering the connecter to the end of the cable while on site.

Following initial antenna pointing, the current phase of the Cuyamaca mountains work was finished, and attention refocused towards Mt. Woodson on another day. The new effort included moving the radio's outdoor unit and aiming the antenna.

Bud Hale reinstalling the outdoor unit

Bud Hale is re-installing the outdoor unit of the radio.

The resulting new topology now shows the existing three licensed HPWREN links as white lines:

More installation photos can be found from: March 1, March 4, March 5, and March 10.

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