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MeshNetworks and NOW Wireless Provide Mobile Broadband Solution for Innovative Public Transportation System for Portsmouth, England.

MAITLAND, Fla. -- City Council project makes Portsmouth, England Europe's First Mesh-Enabled Municipality

MeshNetworks, Inc., an industry leader in mobile mesh networking solutions, and NOW Wireless, a UK wireless and networking specialist, today announced that the city of Portsmouth, England has deployed its MeshNetworks Enabled Architecture (MEA(TM)) mobile broadband solution. The system, part of a citywide public transportation communications network, is designed to provide real-time arrival and departure information to bus passengers in an effort to reduce reliance on cars as the primary means of transport within the city. Anticipated benefits include reduction in traffic congestion, accidents, and pollution across the city. This is the world's largest implementation of a mobile mesh network for an Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) application.

The system, known as the Portsmouth Online Real Time Traveler (PORTAL) Information System, provides real-time travel information to passengers from more than 300 buses and is displayed at 45 locations including 36 bus stops and 9 kiosks throughout the city. Data collected from the On-Board Units (OBUs) on the buses is wirelessly transmitted to central servers at the Portsmouth City Council Traffic Control Center (TCC). The information is processed and wirelessly transmitted to high-tech bus shelters equipped with liquid crystal displays and freestanding kiosks with touch screen displays. Passengers can then see the buses' expected arrival time via these displays.

"Like most major cities, Portsmouth needs to solve its traffic problems by improving public transportation and reducing reliance on the private car," said John Domblides, Team Leader of Intelligent Transportation Systems for the Portsmouth City Council. "MeshNetworks' MEA solution was a key in dramatically improving passengers' travel experience by providing an innovative and cost-effective way of wirelessly communicating between all the elements of the PORTAL system."

The MEA solution is the world's most widely deployed and scalable mobile mesh networking product line. It enables vehicles, roadside devices and handheld computers to connect instantly with each other and to the public telephone network, Internet or other private data networks. MeshNetworks' solution is unique in its ability to support voice, video, data and position location from a wireless IP network. MEA-based ITS systems have also been trialed and deployed in China, Italy, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan.

"Interoperability with existing traffic systems and new leading-edge technologies were an essential requirement for the PORTAL project," said Beril Sener, Project Manager for NOW Wireless. "MeshNetworks' mobile, all-IP wireless products enabled us to meet the project's complex communications requirements, such as keeping a constant connection between the bus OBUs and the central servers while the buses are in transit."

The PORTAL system also provides city administrators and bus operators with real-time vehicle, driver and route information, as well as bus maintenance, speed and route tracking. This information is used to improve logistics management, passenger safety and vehicle maintenance. The City anticipates that improvements brought by the system will bring economic savings and additional enhancements to the local environment.

"Portsmouth has proven itself to be a forward thinking city that has successfully leveraged technology to improve the lives of its residents and visitors alike," said Richard Licursi, President and CEO of MeshNetworks. "We are pleased to have a partner like NOW Wireless whose expertise made the deployment of MEA products such a success. Portsmouth's PORTAL system serves as a powerful example of the benefits that mobile mesh networking brings to the public transit and ITS markets."

MeshNetworks' solutions leverage battlefield networking technology originally developed for the US military under DARPA directed programs. As a result, MEA contains important capabilities not found in competitive solutions, including: a layer 2 routing engine, ultra-fast route acquisition, dynamic bandwidth allocation (fairness), real-time congestion management, QoS, assignable user priority, mobile handovers and proven scalability.

About MeshNetworks

MeshNetworks delivers innovative mobile broadband network solutions based on self-forming, self-healing routing technology. The Company's MeshNetworks Enabled Architecture (MEA(TM)) and Quadrature Division Multiple Access (QDMA(TM)) technology provides wireless broadband connectivity to fixed, portable and mobile devices. Voice, video, data, telemetry and position location are supported to specifically meet the needs of mission critical communications networks. MEA/QDMA technology has been successfully deployed and is in use worldwide. A live network in Maitland, Florida, has been in continuous operation for over three years. MeshNetworks Scalable Routing (MSR) and other core technologies are also available as a complete, high-performance mesh networking solution for 802.11 OEMs via the MeshConnex(TM) software and development suite. This technology currently powers the world's largest mobile mesh networks and is protected by an extensive patent portfolio. For more information visit www.meshnetworks.com.

About NOW Wireless

Established in 1988, NOW Wireless' core business is to supply leading edge wireless and networking infrastructure to Local Governments, Enterprises and ISPs. NOW realizes the importance of integrated interoperable communications systems and as such provide system consultancy services, security auditing, project management and system integration for Local Authorities and Enterprises. At NOW we leverage our considerable IT and Communications expertise to enable local councils and enterprises to reduce their ongoing communication revenue costs. NOW's recent projects include Mesh enabling Portsmouth City's real time passenger information system, managing portal content and wireless infrastructure for Europe's first 3G project on the Isle of Man

For more information about NOW Wireless please visit www.nowwireless.com

About Portsmouth

Portsmouth is a city steeped in history with links to an impressive cast of literary giants, including Charles Dickens, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Rudyard Kipling, and H.G. Wells. From its humble beginnings as a Saxon fishing village, Portsmouth developed into a military garrison town and the home of the Royal Navy, one of the most powerful sea-borne fighting forces in history. Its Historic Dockyard boasts Nelson's flagship HMS Victory, the world's first iron-hulled battleship, HMS Warrior (1860) and the remains of the Mary Rose - Henry VIII's warship which sank off Portsmouth in 1545. It is now home to almost 200,000 people and more than 6 million visitors each year.
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Publication:Business Wire
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jul 27, 2004
Words:983
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