University launches inter-governmental TV White Space project

Accra, Feb 19, GNA – Ghana Technology University (GTUC) has launched TV White Space project aimed at exploring ways to provide internet access and connectivity to majority of people on the wrong side of the digital divide in the country.

The project focuses on building TV White Space test-bed network that will connect five senior high schools in the Accra Metropolis with two GTUC campuses.

Dr Osei Darkwa, President of the university college, performed the launch at the opening of a three-day workshop geared towards building capacity in TV White Spaces and Dynamic Spectrum Wireless Broadband Networks.

The workshop is the initiative of Ministry of Science, Environment, Technology and Innovation, Ghana Technology University College and Centre for Scientific and Industrial Research of Meraka Institute in South Africa.

The National Communications Authority and the MESTI provided the College with license and legal framework to facilitate the work while Meraka Institute is providing the technical support for capacity building.

Dr Darkwa said technological revolution brought about by the use of information systems had entered a new dynamic phase ‘that is new beginning to alter our institutions in ways that are unprecedented in the history of humanity.’

He said the escape from poverty and other development challenges would require information and communication technology to transform basic institutions and change people’s ways of working, governing and thinking.

TV White Space is the unused TV channels between the active ones in the Very High Frequency (VHF) and the Ultra High Frequency (UHF in the range between 300 MHZ and GHz, also known as the decimetre band) spectrum.

This unused spectrum can be used to provide broadband Internet access while operating harmoniously with surrounding TV channels.

There is growing recognition across the globe that dynamic spectrum sharing, especially on the television white spaces (TVWS), enabled by geo-location databases has significant potential to increase the availability and ubiquity of broadband access.

Dr Darkwa said a pilot has begun to show the value, ease of installation, flexibility and limits of the new free public broadband resource by wirelessly delivering broadband connectivity over long distances.

Dr Fisseha Mekura of CSIR Meraka Institute of South Africa said wireless communication was the most convenient and cost effective way of providing information and urged African leaders to utilise the spectrum.


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