New Member
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Registered: ‎05-07-2018

Reccomendations for Backhaul Setup on Remote Island



I am looking to setup a backhaul connection to remote worksites on large island in Australia that has very little access to internet (both land based and via 3/4G or sattelite).


The idea was to setup an internet connection with adequate 4G connection, and then backhaul the connection to the remote site. From what we currently are planning: we are going to setup a 4G antenna / modem in a town approximatley 26KM away from the first backhaul end-point.


The work site currently has radio tower located nearby that we were going to use to attach UBNT radio device(s) to. Another radio device will need to then be used to beam the signal from the tower to the work site (approximatley 8KM from radio tower). From this radio tower, we also need to provide connection to a port on the island located a further 16KM away.


I have used the UBNT link website to roughly determine that our radio locations have line of sight and a clear fresnel zone between each other.


Apart from backhaul, at the remote worksite we will also be setting up a LAN that is connected to the backhaul network. At the worksite, we are intending to combine multiple connections (remote town 4G, Satellite Internet, and on-site 3G device) for load balancing and failover/redundancy incase any of the connections fail.


To establish the LAN at the remote site, we are thinking of using UBNT AC MESH Pro's to create a mesh network with wired access points in relevant buildings. The site is approximatley 200M squared. We are considering this as opposed to wiring each building as the buildings are temporary and will most likely be re-located or expanded upon in the future.


The network will mainly be used for:

  • Office work such as remote-desktop services to their head-office.
  • Downloading / Uploading documents.
  • After hours access to entertainment such as social media, etc.

It is planned that common heavy-data entertainment applications such as netflix, etc will be banned or limited on this network.


The products we are considering:

  • 2x AirFiber 5 Radios to provide the 26KM backhaul link from the 4G device to the first radio tower/mast.
  • 2x Powerbeam AC 2's to beam link from radio tower to remote worksite (8KM).
  • 2x AirFiber 5 Radios to provide the 16KM backhaul link from the first AirFiber 5 mounted on the radio tower/mast to the Port.
  • 4x AC Mesh Pro's to provide wireless LAN network to remote site.
  • UBNT Toughcable to connect the radios together on each tower.
  • Some sort of weatherproof POE adapter that can provide power to the switches needed on each tower/mast (still looking).

Am i on the right track to establish this kind of a backhaul setup? Also, are you able to directly connect the AirFiber 5 Radios with the Power Beam AC2's (with a switch linking them) to continue the link?


I was also thinking that maybe the Powerbeam AC 2's might have a similar-cost alternative that may provide more bandwidth that might be needed in the future (currently on link.ubnt they ar showing a total capacity of 296mbps @ the default 40MHz in our planned location).


Any feedback / tips would be greatly appreciated.

Posts: 134
Registered: ‎02-15-2014
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Solutions: 9

Re: Reccomendations for Backhaul Setup on Remote Island

Its nice to see another Aussie on here.


Yes you can link AirFiber 5's and the Powerbeams ethernet via a switch.


Only thing I would look at, is swap the AirFiber 5's for AirFiber 5x's with big dishes.

Over the longer links this will give you a much stronger signal to use, and more reliable.

Regular Member
Posts: 576
Registered: ‎11-19-2012
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Solutions: 6

Re: Reccomendations for Backhaul Setup on Remote Island

[ Edited ]



You won't be able to use 40MHz channels as the frequencies you can legally use in Australia for links of that distance are limited to 20MHz Channels. About the most you should expect is about 100Mbps, FDX.


AF5's are also not the appropriate device to use for a 26km link under Australian legislation. The beamwidth of the AF5's exceeds the legislated maximums for long distance point to point links, and the gain offered by that product is unlikely to give you sufficient fade margin to ensure a solid link at that distance. Over water - that's another issue.


These kinds of links are my bread and butter, I'm also in Australia. You can see some of my work if you look at the stories in my profile. If you want to do this legally and successfully please PM me.