Liberty is the largest university in Virginia and has a record of being tech-forward and implementing one of the most progressive on-campus Wi-Fi and mobile strategies in education today. Already staffed with a sophisticated IT department, Liberty chose to hire the M S Benbow team for their deep and broad experience in implementing Aruba HD Wi-Fi networks in large public venues that must support massive event-day peaks in demand.
MSB was responsible for designing a cutting-edge converged wireless network that provided a rich and engaging fan experience for the larger crowds now expected at the Liberty Flames football games. This massive design and build project was completed in less than a year and features:
- High-definition streaming video and Wi-Fi calling for 25,000 spectators.
- Future expansion and deployments such as location-based services to further enhance the fan experience.
- Planned integration of all 11 of the university’s large public venues, including baseball and softball fields, an indoor track, and a natatorium.
The move to Division I football represented a heightened opportunity for Liberty University: high performance, high risk, high visibility and high payoff. In developing this high-technology venue, Liberty ignited their sports fans, empowered their students, and positioned Williams Stadium as a sought-after venue for events of all kinds. Using sophisticated technology as a brand differentiator in the 21st century is a winning strategy in Division 1 and beyond!
TechTalk: How WeConnect Fans, Teams, Owners and Venues.
MSB responded to Liberty’s need for blazing speed and network upgrades. MSB created a system that was efficient to construct and adaptive to future technologies. A perfect and innovative example is the 624 under-seat wireless access points that deliver a distributed, strong Wi-Fi signal throughout Williams Stadium while remaining virtually invisible to fans and students. MSB’s design also accounted for the University’s investment in existing infrastructure, seamlessly integrating and leveraging legacy systems and investments. Project management was a critical component to the project’s success in tandem with hardware integration testing, commissioning, and optimization.
MSB partnered with Aruba Networks to design and construct a massive wireless network upgrade as part of Liberty University’s Williams Stadium expansion project. The infrastructure project incorporates fiber optic cable and more than 624 wireless access points to provide robust Wi-Fi coverage and capacity as part of an overall remodel of the venue. The project was completed in less than a year in preparation for the season-opener of the Liberty Flame’s new NCAA Division 1 football classification. MSB’s expert telecommunications engineers designed the state-of the-art wireless network to extend the stadium’s bandwidth to support high-definition streaming video and Wi-Fi calling for 25,000 spectators. The network upgrade was designed to ensure the infrastructure can handle future plans for expansion, such as location-based services to further enhance the fan experience and integration with all 11 of the university’s large public venues, including baseball and softball fields, an indoor track and indoor swimming complex.
MSB and Aruba Networks completed the installation of a Wi-Fi upgrade and expansion project at Pimlico Race Course in advance of the 143rd running of the Preakness Stakes that increased network capacity tenfold. The new Wi-Fi network at Pimlico delivers reliable coverage throughout the clubhouse and infield, and expands the system’s capacity from approximately 5,000 users at a time to 50,000 concurrent users. The Wi-Fi upgrade features a new 10 Gbps backbone pipe to support the network and 330-plus access points (AP), allowing guests to comfortably surf the web, engage in social media or view video from their mobile device. Typically completed over a period of months, the telecommunications project was deployed in just three weeks.
Utah Jazz at Vivint Smart Home Arena deployed Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology to engage fans attending sporting events and concerts. MSB & Aruba Networks were contracted to design, install and optimize BLE beacon technology to provide a richer, more mobile experience for its 1.8 million annual guests. MSB’s approach required an on-site engineered solution to develop a robust design approach for the arena bowl, concourses, entry points and general public areas. To ensure inconspicuous placement of BLE devices, MSB applied trade tactics such as vinyl-wrapping components to match surface color and strategic placement of approximately 1,100 beacons in the venue. The location-based wayfinding network provides a solution for fans to help navigate throughout the venue using interactive mapping on their smartphones. The BLE technology integrates with cloud-based software and a new mobile app that leverages mobile analytics to deliver indoor navigation, in-seat ordering, location-aware push messaging, and venue-specific notifications to customers.
MSB’s knowledge and experience with Aruba Network’s Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacon technology was instrumental in the design and implementation of a wayfinding network to help patients and visitors navigate a large multi-site Medical Complex including a hospital, medical pavilion and parking areas. The technology allows guests to utilize their mobile device in combination with a custom application and cloud-based software to wayfind throughout the complex. The application leverages the location-based navigation capabilities of smartphones and other devices to help people find their way to appointments and amenities, providing detailed routes between buildings and within the facilities to patient rooms, testing centers, cafeterias and medical offices. MSB’s combined expertise with BLE beacon technology, hardware installation and RF systems led to a successful deployment that has helped provide efficient and accurate wayfinding, alleviated patient frustration, and increased patient, staff and physician satisfaction.
Venue management group SMG, decided the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, Smoothie King Center, Champions Square and Club XLIV required a state of the art, High Density WiFi network to provide superior service for Superbowl XLVII. MSB was selected as SMG’s technical representative and overall project manager for the design, construction and commissioning of the network.
A private college made the strategic decision to develop a pervasive neutral host cellular distributed antenna system (DAS) that provides service from the four major cellular carriers. The business model was unique in that the university elected to own the DAS infrastructure and make it an asset of the IT department. MSB was selected to perform the RF and Headend design, create construction documentation, and oversee the carrier BTS and Headend integration, in addition to performing carrier performance testing and system sweeps.
An international offshore exploration and production company retained MSB to develop a video surveillance standard for its Gulf of Mexico assets. MSB developed the video standard and led the design and implementation of a new video management and recording system. MSB designed the offshore video monitor and control system to be managed by the onshore operations center.
Venue management group SMG, the New Orleans Saints and the New Orleans Pelicans decided the Mercedes-Benz Superdome and Smoothie King Center sports complex required a state of the art wireless cellular network for the sport arena campus. SMG required a project consultant with extensive prior experience with large public venue DAS projects, so they selected MSB to lead development of the specification for the campus wide network, solicit proposals and provide a technical recommendation for project award. As a result, the SMG campus had the largest DAS in the U.S. at the time of commissioning in early 2012.
In 2014, an oil & gas client’s current microwave network reached end of life. The network provides communications to all onshore and offshore site locations. MSB was hired to investigate current technology, perform site assessments and develop an overall budget and scope document for the design and implementation of a new communications network.