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Motorola in line for social award

Thanks to a project in rural Namibia, Motorola has been short-listed in the category of Best Use of Mobile for Social and Economic Development at the GSM Association’s Global Mobile Awards 2008. The winners are due to be announced at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on 12 February.

The success of a world-first wind and solar power system trial with MTC Namibia has earned Motorola a nomination for the category of ‚Best Use of Mobile for Social and Economic Development‚ at the GSM Association’s Global Mobile Awards 2008.

The winners will be announced at a gala awards dinner on Tuesday, 12 February 2008, during the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

The trial was conducted at MTC Namibia’s GSM macro cell site at Dordabis village in the Khomas region of Namibia.

The trial demonstrated the viability of renewable energy sources year-round to enable operators to deliver services in remote rural areas where mains electricity is not available or prohibitively expensive.

A solar array and a wind turbine jointly generated the electrical power needed to drive a mid-sized cell and supporting microwave backhaul at the installation.

This is considered to be the world’s first live commercial solar and wind powered macro-cell site deployment that is suitable for deployment in both emerging and mature markets. Though the MTC Namibia trial was delivered on a GSM network, the Motorola solutions can be applied to other wireless networks that have rural cell site power issues.

‚With the implementation of cell sites into more remote areas this Motorola solution provides us with an efficient and reliable alternative to the often costly roll-out of mains grid electricity. This is an important project for us and commencement of the wind and solar cell site trial is proof of our commitment to our customers to provide the essential communication services needed in the region,‚ said Albertus Aochamub, corporate services general manager, MTC Namibia, at the launch of the service in May 2007. By incorporating renewable energy solutions into communication networks Motorola is trialling this solution as a feasible option for operators instead of utilising costly fuel generators or waiting long periods for a mains grid connection. The Dordabis cell site will remain a part of MTC Namibia’s live GSM network throughout the trial. Motorola has been working with the GSM Association on this project which was announced at 3GSM Barcelona in February last year.

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