Developing Multi-destination Video Conferencing


Deployment Diagram

Full project report can be downloaded here
E-Networking Research and Development
(ENRD) is an NGO recognized by the government of Nepal and is the affiliate member of APT since 2009. As part of its mission, ENRD has been running Nepal Wireless Networking Project started in 2002 from the grassroots level. At the beginning it was started with the technical support of national and international volunteers. Still there are some volunteers to help but now it has fulltime engineers and technicians working for Nepal Wireless.

The initial goal of the project was to build local communication system between the villages because there was no modern communication means in most of the remote rural areas of Nepal until 2009. Therefore the project was involved to build wireless networks in the rural areas and to connect the rural schools and village communication centers to the Internet for IP telephony. By connecting one village in 2002, the wireless network is continuously being expanded in many more villages in the mountain region of the Himalayas. Now the project has built wireless network in fifteen out of seventy five districts of Nepal and has connected more over 145 villages.

ENRD is also focused on wireless networking training as part of its capacity building program to produce rural wireless technicians. It provides tr
aining to the village technician wireless installation, computer lab networking and trouble shooting of the network. ENRD also provided training to the village technicians on installing solar and wind power. It is because Nepal Wireless has to depend upon solar power in the major relay stations.

The long-term goal of Nepal Wireless Networking Project is to become one of the biggest rural Internet Service Providers to help narrowing down the digital gap. Therefore Nepal Wireless specifically aims to achieve the following goals, divided into six main goal areas:

  •  Education: Increase and improve educational opportunities in rural communities by creating tele-teaching and tele-training programs, and by making e-learning materials in local languages available to students, teachers and villagers through e-libraries.
  • Health: Connect rural health clinics and health workers to city hospitals in order to provide quality medical assistance through a tele-medicine program and make highly needed healthcare in rural communities available by virtually bringing medical doctors to villages.
  • Communication: Increase communication facilities in rural areas by providing telephone services through Internet phone system (VoIP), make Internet available for email communication, and help villagers to discuss by using Nepali language bulletin boards for community discussion.
  • Local e-commerce: Help villagers to buy and sell their products in the local market and international market through local intranet and Internet.
  • Job creation: Create jobs in the rural areas for younger generation through ICT related services such as communication centers, VoIP phone services, remittance services, and virtual ATM machine.
  • Research and Field Testing: Help researchers of climate change monitoring projects collect data remotely and provide real time weather information about air routes in the Himalayan valleys during bad weather and the monsoon season for airlines. Moreover, provide technical support to the Department of National Park of Nepal to install surveillance system at the parks to monitor the movement of the poachers to save the endangered species in the park.

Nepal Wireless has installed advanced wireless equipment as the backhauls using 5.8 GHz de-licensed band from Alvarion and Motorola. It utilizes Cisco and HP switches for separating network and limiting broadcast. So far Nepal Wireless Networking Project has connected 145 villages in 15 districts of Nepal and it is expanding its wireless network to many more villages.

 As part of its efforts to provide additional services for the benefit of rural people, ENRD had gotten grant from APT under J2 program for installing advanced capabilities in the wireless network to increase its:

a)   Ability to provide multi-destination audio/video conferencing system over wireless network for tele-teaching, tele-training on education, health, agriculture and local e-commerce for the rural population.

 b)   Ability to provide Layer 2 and Layer 1 type connectivity in the wireless network in order to persuade mobile telephone operators to extend their mobile services using Femtocell technology and to encourage commercial ISPs to bring Internet especially in the remote region where it is not financially viable for them to extend their services because of the remoteness of the villages and difficult mountain terrains.

 c)   Ability to deploy IPv6 in wireless network because of requirements for end-to-end connectivity for multimedia conferencing system that will be widely adopted to provide services such as tele-teaching and tele-medicine having multicasting features and prepare the network compatible for the future.

 Thus the focus of the project is to develop multi-destination video conferencing software, to deploy IPV6 in the network and to increase the capacity of the network to connect to mobile services

Full project report can be downloaded here