The Purdue Discovery Park District is planning to install a private network it says will make it a leading smart community. The network, which will be built and managed by Florida-based SBA Communications Corp. (Nasdaq: SBAC), will be designed to allow companies within the district to establish their own private networks.
Purdue says the network will use CBRS, the new wireless spectrum that has been authorized by the Federal Communications Commission for commercial use. The spectrum had previously been reserved only for government and military use.
“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 Wi-Fi deployment,” said Troy Hege, vice president of innovation and technology for the Purdue Research Foundation. “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.”
In addition to providing fast service for district tenants, Purdue says the network will also serve as a testing ground for various applications, including 5G.
“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. “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.”
The district’s CBRS network is expected to go live later in the first quarter.