The Capacity Access Point – Airai (CAP-A) project was a highlight of our 2018 Business Plan. The concept is to extend the network through a micro-ducted optic fiber link from CAP-N at Ngeremlengui, where access is limited, to the airport at Airai. This will provide easier fiber connections for BSCC’s Retail Service Provider (RSP) customers. Importantly, there is limited fiber access available at Ngeremlengui, both in terms of number of available connections, robustness and overall capacity throughput, but there are already two different fiber networks available in Airai without those limitations.
CAP-A will include BSCCnet access facilities, a customer meet-me space and the BSCC office. BSCC is currently hiring an architect to design the building. Once we have the design, there will be a competitive process under ADB procurement guidelines for the building construction contract. We are currently finalising the extensive documentation to open a tender for the outside plant work, again under ADB guidelines, including a Technical Specification, Environmental Evaluation, contract terms and conditions, supplier requirements and bid process.
The CAP-A building will be small, but will have a larger footprint than the modular cable landing station that houses CAP-N. With only three customers, BSCC does not need a public office, but we do need workspace for our two full-time and one part-time staff, plus a meeting space, storage for spares and a test workbench. We also want to provide space for national ICT infrastructure and for our customers to interconnect.
So far, BSCCnet has been 100% available. There has been no interruption to service since we started the confidence trials back in September 2017. Our operational arrangements are still being finalised, but will be completed shortly, now that the VSAT equipment has been delivered. That provides a completely independent path for communications, so we can remain in contact with our Network Operations Center (NOC) in Davao even if there is an interruption to service on BSCCnet itself.
To save a drive out to Ngeremlengui, this is what CAP-N looks like these days:
Once we have the VSAT dish installed, CAP-N will no longer be a work site, and we can spruce it up a bit!