|Long Title:||Easily Deployable A4 Wireless Mesh Networks|
Université de Neuchâtel
|Project Leader:||T. Braun|
(see also A4-Mesh)
|Documentation||Generic documentation is available at the public webpage|
|Specific documentation||Specific documentation is available at the project repository (not public)|
The A4-Mesh project and its extension eA4-Mesh consider several application scenarios of wireless
mesh network technologies. The main application scenario that has been deployed in two Swiss
regions, focuses on support for environmental research.
The first deployment of the A4-Mesh network is in the Crans-Montana-Sierre region in Valais, where the A4-Mesh network is used to continuously transfer environmental data measured by various environmental sensors of the MontanAqua project. The A4-Mesh network solution leads to various benefits such as lower maintenance costs and reduced risk of losing data.
The second deployment of the A4-Mesh network is installed in the area of Emmental to support environmental research, specifically to investigate how groundwater flow systems used for water supply will react to dry periods that are expected to occur more frequently under future climatic conditions. For this, the A4-Mesh infrastructure is coupled to a database feeding a hydrogeological modeling and simulation system to make the environmental research process more efficient.
To allow easy access to the A4-Mesh network, special care was taken to seamlessly integrate authorisation and authentication into the organization's own authentication and authorisation infrastructure (AAI), grouped into a federation: in our case the Shibboleth-based SWITCHaai is used. Furthermore, the accounting function provides specific traffic statistics, which contribute to the traffic based charging module. It operates in a SWITCHaai compatible wireless mesh network, which allows the network administrator to have full visibility of the forwarded traffic including the source, destination, and the forwarding nodes (organizations) involved. With this data the organisations can be properly charged for their traffic.
The A4-Mesh project and its extension eA4-Mesh achieved the goal of integrating a large number of wireless mesh
network (WMN) users, namely the environmental researchers from UniBE GIUB and UniNE CHYN, in addition to the
IT services from UniBE IT and UniNE SITEL.
The project and its extension will continue under the umbrella of Swiss Academic Compute Cloud project.
There are several challenges and problems encountered during the deployment of A4-Mesh, which will bed solved in the extension. The common goal of all work packages consist in providing an easily deployable outdoor wireless network that supports secure high speed network access as well as mechanisms for accounting and auditing. An aim is also to guarantee sustainability of results by applying unchanged measures of the A4-Mesh project.
eA4-Mesh is structured around the following work packages: