Purdue Discovery Park District (DPD) hopes to be considered one of the most connected communities in the world, and last week announced plans to install a private network in the District. SBA Communications, which specializes in wireless communications infrastructure, will build and manage the network.
The network will use CBRS to be deployed on the neutral host backbone DPD has already established, which will enable any service provider to connect to the network to deliver their services. The availability of a neutral host reduces infrastructure costs for service providers, improves flexibility and visibility for operators like DPD, and improves end users’ access. The CBRS network is expected to go live in the first quarter of 2021.
“This technology is interesting because it captures all the benefits of cell service like security, bandwidth, and mobility, but in a private network model similar to traditional WiFi deployment,” said Troy Hege, Purdue Research Foundation Vice President of Innovation and Technology. “CBRS technology, in conjunction with our neutral host infrastructure, forms the basis of our 5G connected community platform that will drive a terrific user experience based on pervasive, fast, and secure connectivity as well as the development and adoption of novel applications from autonomous mobility and virtual reality to enhanced public safety and energy conservation.”
Companies in the District will be able to establish their private networks within DPD’s CBRS network to run apps for everything from security and communications to transportation, logistics, and robotics. Innovation Partners Institute (IPI), located at DPD, is leasing space on the CBRS network to do testbed applications with its innovation partners.
“As an important partner of the Indiana 5G Zone, DPD is a valuable asset to test near-commercial prototypes in a living lab environment prior to commercial launch,” said Sean Hendrix, Managing Director of Indiana 5G Zone and Chief Technology Officer of NineTwelve. “This is critical because with 5G being so new, there are unknowns driving the need for a dynamic and integrated environment. Timely feedback from this environment is important to enable rapid innovation and rollout of 5G solutions to the market.”
“For SBA, the partnership with Purdue Research Foundation is important for creating a connected community platform at DPD where researchers and developers can utilize our private network infrastructure to test and incubate innovative applications and provide cutting-edge services for residents, employees, and visitors,” said Piyush Raj, Managing Director of Connected Venues at SBA Communications. “CBRS spectrum has created a pathway to community-wide connectivity in places that previously did not have access to this type of opportunity. This is the early stage of a transformation that could be hugely beneficial for communities across the country, both small and large.”