Wireless Applications

Aruba Networks Announces New Ruggedized Access Points

February 6, 2008

The explosion-resistant wireless LAN products are designed for outdoor and industrial applications and feature over-the-air configuration, high-power radios, mesh technology, and solar-power features.


SUNNYVALE, CA /Marketwire/ -- Aruba Networks Inc., a global leader in wireless LANs and secure unified mobility solutions, announced a new series of high-performance, explosion-resistant access points targeted at industrial and outdoor applications. Aruba designed the new AP-85 Dual-Radio Outdoor Access Point family with radio, packaging, and operational features designed specifically for petrochemical, material handling, shop-floor, logistics, and SCADA applications. Robustly constructed yet simple to install, the access points include features targeted specifically at reducing both operating and capital expenditures.

"Field workers need secure access to both business- and process-critical information, and reaching them in the harsh environments in which they work requires a purpose-built solution," said Ken Jensen, Aruba's Director of Product Management. "To meet the needs of our growing base of industrial customers, we created a family of tailor-made access points that leverage Aruba's Adaptive Radio Management and identity-based security technology to reliably and securely work in these harsh environments."

The new AP-85 access points feature dual, high-power radios that deliver up to 200 mW (23 dBm) for wide-area coverage. The weatherproof enclosure and ATEX Zone 2 safety rating enable the access points to operate in explosion hazardous environments and across temperatures from –30°C to 55°C without extra-cost housings.

Industrial access points are typically mounted in inaccessible areas to put them out of harm's way. To reduce set-up and maintenance time, over-the-air management enables the access points to be configured, updated, and repurposed without physically accessing the hardware. High-intensity data, signal, and power LEDs mounted behind a front panel window are readily visible from a distance, providing a simple means of verifying RF signal and link alignment and checking status. These features facilitate fast deployment without the services of highly skilled technicians.

Users have a choice of 10/100Base-T or single/multimode fiber-optic data interfaces. Fiber-optic data interfaces are ideal in hazardous environments, whereas wire connections often work best in retrofit applications. Power options include standard 802.3af Power over Ethernet and 12 VDC, or in the case of fiber models, auto-ranging 90-288 VAC. Low-voltage power (12 VDC) can be drawn from either plant bus power sources used for industrial sensors and actuators, vehicular power cells, or a solar-panel array.

When data cabling is too expensive to install, the AP-85 access points can operate in a secure, resilient, self-healing mesh. In this mode, the radio signals hop from access point to access point, an ideal arrangement for open-field, SCADA, and oil/gas applications. For completely wire-free operation, including tactical deployments, the solar power option can be used. The mesh mode allows networks to be set up quickly and inexpensively in even the harshest environments, without costly site modifications, and is ideal for overcoming difficult installation scenarios in both indoor and outdoor locations.

The AP-85 Dual-Radio Outdoor Access Point family will be shipping in the first quarter of 2008.

A free white paper on industrial wireless LANs entitled "The Indestructible Network: Wireless LANs for Industrial and Outdoor Applications" is available.

About Aruba Networks
People move. Networks must follow. Aruba Networks Inc. securely delivers networks to users, wherever they work or roam. Our unified mobility solutions include Wi-Fi networks, identity-based security, remote access and cellular services, and centralized network management to enable the Follow-Me Enterprise that moves in lock step with users:

  • Follow-Me Connectivity: 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi networks ensure that users are always within reach of mission-critical information.

     

  • Follow-Me Security: Identity-based security assigns access policies to users, enforcing those policies whenever and wherever a network is accessed.

     

  • Follow-Me Applications: Remote-access solutions and cellular network integration ensure uninterrupted access to applications as users move.

The cost, convenience, and security benefits of our unified mobility solutions are fundamentally changing how and where we work. Aruba is based in Sunnyvale, CA, and has operations throughout the Americas, Europe, Middle East, and Asia Pacific regions.

Aruba Networks, The All Wireless Workplace Is Now Open For Business, People Move. Networks Must Follow., RFProtect, Bluescanner, The Mobile Edge Company, and Mobile Edge Architecture are trademarks of Aruba Networks Inc.


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