12Wireless Mesh Networking: A Key Solution for Rural and Public Safety Applications

12.1 Introduction

During emergency situations, reliable wireless mobile communications that enable real‐time information sharing, constant availability, and interagency interoperability are imperative. One cannot depend on the existing infrastructure, but wireless mesh networking technology can be used effectively to provide broadband wireless communications for rescue operations. Given the shortcomings of current Public Safety and Disaster Recovery (PSDR), wireless mesh networks (WMNs) provide an interesting alternative technology. WMNs have been receiving a great deal of attention as a broadband access alternative for a wide range of markets, including those in the metro, emergency, public safety, carrier access, and residential sectors. This chapter provides the background and the challenges of wireless mesh technology. It addresses some of the technical influences of WMNs and, in particular, focuses on the opportunities that wireless mesh technologies provide for implementing an efficient network for emergency and public safety services.

Wireless technologies have played an important role in our modern world from simple voice and data communications for personal use to sophisticated communications for emergency and military organizations. In recent years, wireless broadband technology has rapidly become an established, global service required by a high percentage of the population. By the ...

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