Maspro pushes Wi-Fi five kilometers

Maspro Denkoh Corp., a Japanese manufacturer of wireless communications equipment, has developed a transmission system that can send Wi-Fi signals as far as five kilometers.

The system relies on high-gain antennas produced by the company and is compatible with standard 802.11b/g communications equipment, it said on Wednesday at the Ceatec Japan 2005 trade show in Chiba, Japan.

There are two types of antenna: One is a tube-shaped model about 40 centimeters long, and the other is a much shorter and square-shaped model. Combining two of the tubular antenna -- one on each end of the link -- will result in a transmission distance of about 5 km, while one of each antenna will work on distances up to 2 km, and two of the compact antenna will be fine for up to 1 km, the company said.

They can be used with standard wireless LAN equipment that support external antennas, said Seiichi Maejima, new products leader in the company's sales department.

Maspro is promoting them for remote monitoring and security applications and is offering a complete system for potential users. The system includes a camera, video encoder and transmitter unit and antenna for the remote site, all of which are suitable for outdoor use. At the receiving end, there is another antenna and WLAN access point. The system comes with software that can support video from up to nine remote cameras.

The product priced depending on the transmission distance involved. The 5-km version costs ¥600,000 ($5,254); the 2-km version costs ¥568,000 and the 1-kilometer version costs ¥537,000. All systems come with a single camera and remote unit. Additional remote kits cost either ¥488,000 for the version with the tubular antenna or ¥457,000 for the square antenna type.

Sales began in Japan in September, and the company has no current plans to offer the equipment overseas.

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