HVAC system helps provide cell phone reception

Wireless-over-HVAC technology used in the nation's largest convention center provides wireless service in a complex environment.


The nation's largest convention center, Chicago's McCormick Place , needed a wireless service boost, and the HVAC system helped provide it. ExteNet Systems installed a proprietary wireless-over-HVAC system in McCormick Place that uses HVAC metal ductwork to distribute signals and create a new indoor wireless network.

McCormick Place comprises four convention buildings with a combined total of 2.6 million sq ft of exhibit space. A wireless-over-HVAC system allowed a non-intrusive installation that provides coverage to the entire complex, including office spaces and exhibit floors, without interrupting convention or meeting schedules. ExteNet installed an indoor distributed antenna system (DAS) that can extend the reach of conventional cell sites by using discrete indoor antennas, base transceiver stations, remote radio units, and the metal ducts within the building's existing HVAC system.
Nearly 80% of mobile phone calls in the United States originate or terminate inside buildings, according to ExteNet, and wireless carriers are increasingly interested in indoor DAS. They have been installed in suburban corporate campuses, downtown high-rises, hospitals and other health facilities, and institutions of higher education.

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