Communications Networks

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Sectors Utility
Contact Wilfred Pinfold
SchoolBusHotspot.jpg Availability of Connectivity via WiFi
During the COVID-19 pandemic some local governments and companies have made progress through publishing online and through physical postings to map WiFi Hotspots.
SanMateoWiFi.jpg Bay Area Unified Wi-Fi Roaming Security and Ease of Use
As more and more cities deploy public Wi-Fi service, security and ease of use are becoming critical. In addition, the service becomes fragmented and constrained by geopolitical boundaries. This action cluster will deploy and evaluate the impact of new Wi-Fi authentication and access management solutions that deliver not only the highest possible end-user security, but will allow participating municipalities to create a unified regional system that users can automatically connect to when in range, regardless of what city/county they are in.
K-12-teacher.jpg COWs COLTs Aerostats for Emergency Distance Learning and Telemedicine Broadband Connectivity in Rural Areas
This white paper describes COWs (Cell-on-Wheels), COLTs (Cell-on-Light Trucks), and Aerostats (CCAs) used to provide cellular or Wi-Fi connectivity in areas without 4G. They are used to provide emergency communications during catastrophic events such as fighting forest fires in rural areas, and in aftermath of earthquakes, hurricanes, or floods. In California there have been a series of state-level broadband meetings focused on the need to provide an immediate response to fill the distance learning and telemedicine broadband access gaps to unserved rural households sheltering in place during the COVID-19 crisis. Some telecommunications providers and public libraries are offering free Wi-Fi hotspots with 4G service to take home; however, 4G hotspots only work in areas with cellular broadband service.
City of San Leandro.jpg City of San Leandro, CA: “SL Wi-Fiber”
Since the creation of Lit San Leandro – a public-private partnership that yielded an 18mile, fiber optic loop – installing a free, Public Wi-Fi system in the city’s downtown core had been one of the City Council’s long-standing goals.
SchenectadyWiFi.jpeg Connecting Communities with Public Wi-Fi technology and local Tourism mobile applications
Provide areas of Public Wi-Fi for use by residents, employees and visitors while deploying informational mobile application showcasing local businesses and giving real time data for local trolley schedules.

Using technology to collect data which will improve the operation of local governments.

MeshNetworkAlthea.jpg Connecting Rural School Children for Distance Learning
As the SARS-COV-2 virus spreads, and communities work to minimize COVID-19 cases, schools are closing and we expect all school physical facilities will remain closed for some period of time during this emergency. This will affect more than 76 million students across the US.
DentonMobile.jpeg Deployable Communications and Incident Command System for Emergency Response and Disaster Recovery
The integrated system will facilitate communications and information sharing during disaster recovery. It can be deployed in area where communications do not exist or failed due to disasters. The system will include (1) A Deployable Communication System, (2) Onboard Sensors (3) Next Generation Incident Command System and (4) Web Services
Singaporefreewifi.jpg Deployment of user-friendly, secure and sustainable federated public Wi-Fi systems
To deploy a sustainable federated public Wi-Fi solution across Singapore that is has easy to use secure authenticated access and jointly develop a set of best practices with cities, industry players, and the academia to promote coordinated public Wi-Fi deployment, to address signal interference issues, standardizing user experience and security.
Swansea Arena External.jpg Fast Wi-Fi boost for Copr Bay
Fast and reliable Wi-Fi technology is being introduced in Swansea's emerging new Copr Bay district, letting thousands of people stream content at the same time to their mobile devices.
CcnLogoLg.png GCTC Connectivity Covid-19 Resources
The Covid-19 crisis has increased the need for students to distance learn and workers to telework; however, the digital divide remains as an unbridged connectivity and device gap for many. Devices such as mobile devices, notebook computers must be in place or issued that can connect wirelessly to Wi-Fi for distance learning and teleworking. Some local governments and companies have made progress through publishing online and through physical postings to map these sites. Other local governments may be further ahead in advanced connectivity having deployed wireless connectivity delivery systems that can easily scale to more locations such as parked vehicles with Wi-Fi equipment.
Online-learning.jpg Guidance and Resources for Connectivity
This page is the list of available guidances and resources for connectivity during pandemic.
Cell200.png Helping low-cost or free internet connectivity
Programs and organizations helping to identify and provide low-cost or free broadband connectivity.
Link-Oregon-Network-Map-Mar-2021-3MB.png Oregon middle-mile fiber broadband network
Link Oregon, the non-profit, middle-mile broadband network serving Oregon’s

public and non-profit sectors, delivered the first two phases of its statewide network backbone in June 2021, having successfully lit nearly 2,000 route-miles of fiber-optic cable and deployed more than 50 service locations across Oregon.

PA2040 Project.png PA2040 Public Wi-Fi
Create wireless mesh backhaul infrastructure as part of smart city IoT deployment throughout the 1700 to 1900 blocks of Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington DC to enable public connectivity to services and enhanced connectivity for government operations and public safety. Involves city technology, planning, and transportation agencies, local Business Improvement District (BID), federal District planning agency, and technology solution providers.
SCALE.jpg Safe Community Awareness and Alerting Network (SCALE)
* Connect homes to detect emergency events and alert residents via phone or app, and initiate contacting first responders
  • Demonstrate how to extend a connected safe home to everyone at a low-incremental cost
  • Focus on seniors, their care givers, and property managers
SanMateoWiFi.jpg San Mateo County Public WiFi
We live in the heart of Silicon Valley, but even in San Mateo County we have a significant digital divide between those with high speed Internet access and those with slow speed or no access. The County believes that providing high speed Internet access is the 21st century equivalent to building roads. Providing the infrastructure so that all residents have equal access to online resources is critical to supporting our shared vision of a healthy, safe, prosperous, livable, environmentally conscious, and collaborative community.
Sccoelogo.jpg Santa Clara County Office of Education CBRS Networks
Santa Clara County Office of Education and Joint Venture Silicon Valley are cooperating with industry leaders to deploy CBRS broadband networks for addressing distance learning and homework gap challenges.
SmartRuralCommunityAC.jpg Smart Rural Community
The Smart Rural Community (SRC) network is made up of a group of carefully vetted, rural broadband providers who are committed to driving growth and creating opportunities for their communities. SRC providers enable fast, reliable and sustainable connectivity needed to thrive in an online world, especially as the demand for distance learning, telemedicine and remote work grows. And for those who live in these communities, it means equal opportunity for education, resources, entrepreneurship and more.


Communications networks are systems of interconnected devices, technologies, and infrastructure that are used to transmit information and data between different points. They can be wired or wireless and can be used for various forms of communication such as voice, text, data, images, and video.

There are several types of communication networks, including:

  • Local Area Networks (LANs): These networks connect devices within a single location, such as an office building or a home.
  • Wide Area Networks (WANs): These networks connect devices across multiple locations, such as a network of offices in different cities or countries.
  • Metropolitan Area Networks (MANs): These networks connect devices within a metropolitan area, such as a city.
  • Cellular networks: These networks provide wireless communication for mobile devices and are the backbone of mobile communication services such as voice and data services.
  • The Internet: The Internet is a global communication network that connects millions of devices and allows for the exchange of information and data on a global scale.
  • Satellite networks: These networks use satellites to provide communication services to remote areas or to ships and airplanes that are in motion.
  • IoT networks: These networks connect devices that are part of the Internet of Things (IoT) such as sensors, appliances, and vehicles.

All these networks rely on a combination of hardware, software, and infrastructure to transmit and receive data. They are essential for modern communication and have become increasingly important in our daily lives, allowing for the exchange of information and data on a global scale. There are three broad technologies in the above. Wired, Wireless and Satalite technologies. They have various benefits and issues:

Wired networks


  • They generally provide faster and more stable connections than wireless networks.
  • They are less susceptible to interference and signal degradation.
  • They are more secure, as it is harder to intercept data transmitted over a wired connection.


  • They require physical connections, making them less flexible than wireless networks.
  • They can be more difficult and expensive to install and maintain.
  • They are not portable, and can't be easily moved.
Wireless networks


  • They are more flexible and portable than wired networks.
  • They don't require physical connections, making them easier to set up and maintain.
  • They can provide connectivity in areas where it is difficult or impossible to install wired connections.


  • They are generally slower and less stable than wired connections.
  • They are more susceptible to interference and signal degradation.
  • They are less secure than wired networks, as wireless data transmissions can be intercepted more easily.
Satellite networks


  • They provide connectivity in remote and hard-to-reach areas where other forms of communication are not available.
  • They are useful for providing communication services to ships, airplanes and other vehicles in motion.


  • They are generally slower and less reliable than wired and wireless networks.
  • They are more expensive to install and maintain than other types of networks.
  • They can be affected by weather conditions and other environmental factors.
  • They have high latency, which means that there is a delay between sending and receiving data.

Ultimately, the choice of network depends on the specific needs and requirements of the application or service. Wired networks are generally best for high-speed and stable connections, wireless networks are best for flexibility and portability, and satellite networks are best for remote and hard-to-reach areas.