Exalt Communications is offering the ExtendAir microwave backhaul system that is lightweight, compact, and which delivers point-to-point links to a distance of 20 miles. The ExtendAir platform delivers “moderate” capacity at comparatively low cost, $5,000 per system, said Amir Zoufonoun, Exalt’s founder and CEO. Zoufonoun added that the system is targeted to public-safety agencies that are new to microwave backhaul. “Basically agencies that want to divorce themselves from the wireline infrastructure and create their own private networks,” he said.

“In these economic times, money is tight, so this product helps them get on the bandwagon.”

In addition, Exalt is marketing the EX-s series of digital microwave radios that provide Ethernet transport at speeds up to 360 Mb/s with sub-500 μs latency. The radios offer a split-mount design, which means all of the electronics for the signal processing and interfaces are housed in a unit that’s located in the communications center, while the RF converters reside next to the antenna. The configuration gives users the best of both worlds, Zoufonoun said.

“It reduces the RF losses going up to the antenna,” Zoufonoun said. “Typically, if everything was indoors, you’d have to get a bigger antenna to overcome the amount of RF loss. And antennas have issues with loading, and even people — they don’t like to look at large antennas on top of towers and buildings. So, you want to keep the antenna small. To do that, you do the RF conversion at the antenna.”