In today’s high speed, always-connected technology world it’s easy to forget that networking can be a major challenge in remote areas and difficult climates. And yet a number of industries specialize in working in remote areas, and many of them require low latency, high-speed networks for critical functionality.
Adexus, a systems integrator in South America, recently faced this challenge when working with a mining company. The customer needed to use seawater for its production operations since freshwater supplies in northern Chile need to be conserved. But since the ocean is 124 miles away, the mining company needed a reliable network to control and monitor its distributed pumping equipment. And that network had to be solid as any downtime or disruptions could cost the mining company as much as $7 million per day.
As if that wasn’t enough of a challenge, there were other difficult variables to overcome for Adexus. For instance, the mine is located in one of the driest deserts on the planet, with daytime temperatures reaching more than 90 degrees and nighttime temperatures dropping to the teens. The mine is also located in the high desert, at an elevation of more than 8,000 feet. And finally, large stretches of the route from the ocean to the mine have no commercial electricity.
Working with long-time partner and optical networking specialists Ciena, Adexus ultimately delivered a network within the mining company’s performance, cost and timing parameters. The network connects the mining company’s corporate offices in Santiago with a central pumping station, all the distributed pumping infrastructure and cameras at key production sites. The network has resulted in lower overall operating costs for the customer, and they were also able to conserve fresh water, a key environmental goal. The infrastructure is also scalable, ready to support additional mining sites and new technologies like remote mining devices, which help ensure miners’ safety.
“I’m very proud of projects like this,” said Manuel Fernandez Pollán, general manager at Adexus. “Not only are we using technology to improve lives, we are working together as trusted teammates. In the end, we aren’t just building networks, we’re building bonds. That’s important to my team and my customers, and that’s why I value working with Ciena.”
Edited by Maurice Nagle