FDA’s New White Oak Campus Selects InnerWireless DAS to Utilize Complete Coverage in 10 Buildings, 2 Million Square Feet
Master contractor SMS Data Products Group, Inc. deploys InnerWireless’ DAS to meet the FDA’s requirements for campus-wide, in-building smartphone and BlackBerry® access to all national carriers from one unified system
RICHARDSON, Texas, and McLEAN, Va. – Jan. 26, 2010 – More than 7,000 workers at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) new White Oak campus have complete wireless connectivity to all four national carriers – AT&T, Sprint/Nextel, T-Mobile and Verizon – for their government-issued and personal smartphones and BlackBerry® devices thanks to the InnerWireless distributed antenna system (DAS) chosen and installed by the FDA’s master contractor, SMS Data Products Group, Inc. (SMS) of McLean, Va.
The White Oak campus currently has 10 buildings with more than 2 million square feet of in-building wireless coverage; the campus is slated for ongoing expansion and could reach a total of 14 buildings throughout which up to 12,000 users would have ubiquitous wireless access.
Located in Silver Spring, Md., the White Oak campus is part of the federal government’s efforts to reduce costs by consolidating agency locations, which involves moving from aging facilities into modern and newly constructed buildings that are less expensive to operate and maintain. With four more buildings in line for funding and construction through 2012, the InnerWireless Horizon™ Converged Wireless solution’s scalability and reliability were key to why SMS chose InnerWireless to interconnect all the FDA buildings at White Oak with one unified system.
“FDA had the foresight years ago to ask SMS to find an enterprise-class wireless distribution solution with scalability for the White Oak campus so employees would have in-building wireless access, both for routine and emergency communications, whether they’re walking between floors, in tunnels connecting buildings or inside elevators,” said Doug Jefferson, senior account manager, SMS Data Products Group, Inc. “Because InnerWireless utilizes a passive-hybrid architecture, it has the inherent reliability we need for the client, and there’s virtually no operational cost.”
The massive consolidation of FDA employees at White Oak also required that the DAS have significant wireless client capacity because nearly all FDA employees have both a government-issued device and a personal phone, which means that approximately 14,000 wireless devices can currently connect with all of the major wireless carriers today; upon completion of the White Oak campus, that number could easily reach 25,000 wireless devices.
“To be successful with a DAS deployment as complex as the White Oak project, SMS, InnerWireless and the FDA started working way ahead of the curve, before breaking ground on a new building. InnerWireless has strong RF engineering and computer-modeling skills that enabled SMS to deliver a wireless coverage plan to the FDA that’s extremely accurate to the real-world scenario. For this project to succeed, FDA had to have access to all the major wireless carriers, which they’ve achieved not only operationally, but also within a financial structure that’s very favorable for the FDA. This project has benefited the carriers, the FDA and its end-users. It’s been an all-around successful project, and InnerWireless’ solution is the core of that success,” Jefferson added. Like the government, the private sector is accelerating rollout of enterprise-wide, in-building wireless infrastructures. Nowhere is this more evident than in hospitals and health systems across America where physicians increasingly rely on their smartphones and BlackBerry devices to access patient information, place orders and stay in touch with their practices and colleagues. This clinical mobility enables doctors to be more efficient and to spend more time at their patients’ bedside because their smartphones and BlackBerry devices can access the many voice and data services provided by cellular/PCS carriers.
“Wireless communications has forever changed the way enterprises operate, and the demand for mobility has driven technology to the point where wireless networks are more flexible, secure and cost-effective than hardwired systems,” said Ed Cantwell, president, CEO and chairman of InnerWireless. “InnerWireless continues to receive strong demand from both the public and private sectors. There’s a surging demand for highly scalable and reliable enterprise-wide in-building wireless solutions that can deliver the complete wireless coverage like the FDA enjoys at its new White Oak campus.”