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Cleared for Takeoff: Aviation Services Operation Gets Failover Wireless LAN

At any given time, hundreds of private aircraft are in the air. From takeoff to landing, pilots and planes rely on fixed-base operations, or FBOs, to ensure aircraft is properly stored and maintained. Serving non-airline owners/operators, FBOs offer maintenance and management of private aircraft and must provide secure electronic communication for filing flight plans, assessing weather conditions and the like.

With more than 70 of its own FBOs located nationwide, this large aviation services company needed an enterprise-class, failover wireless WAN on which to provide a secure VPN (virtual private network) for approximately 1,000 users. Located in both urban and remote areas, FBO wireless connectivity varied widely from some to none, depending on the local area and availability of broadband. With a long relationship in place, the company turned to Joseph Baca, MicroAge Solutions Expert, to explore and develop a customized solution. “It was important to the client that its public network stay separate from the pilot network and it had to be totally secure,” recalls Joe.

Given the numerous scattered sites, system complexity, security requirements, and cost considerations, Joe proposed a unique enterprise-class, secure wireless application utilizing a combination of routers and wireless technology. As Joe explains, “With MicroAge’s sourcing capabilities, we have incredible access to a range of resources that enables us to present clients with truly innovative solutions.” The network provides wireless infrastructure that supports the company’s existing sites with plenty of room to add on; powerful dual-radio transmission for signal access, streamlined remote management from a single console for all locations; and the highest level of VPN security possible.

“When you are looking at 70-plus sites, you’re looking at the economics of that too… this custom solution offered a hardened, enterprise-level option that was tailored to the client’s needs at the component level,” says Wyatt Bowman, MicroAge Director of Technical Sales and Professional Services. As a custom build, the solution incorporated robust, military-grade quality components—from its radio technology to router functionality—that safely supports hundreds of users at any of the various FBO points. Test units were fully evaluated prior to deployment and since then the solution has addressed the client’s complex wireless issues by delivering a ruggedized, enterprise-level wireless VPN adaptable to future growth. Fast and vast, the system allows users to access a completely secure network, anywhere, anytime as they take off or land.

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Joe Baca
20 Years Experience
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