Mesh WLAN technology will be pushed along a little further this week when groups present their proposals for the upcoming 802.11s specification.
The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 802.11 Task Group S (TGs) is meeting on wireless mesh in San Francisco, and will have 15 proposals to sort through over the course of its business this week.
The goal of mesh technology is to provide a way to extend a WLAN's coverage throughout large areas like cities, campuses and airports, allowing users to move from node to node on the network without any apparent service disruption.
The Wi-Mesh Alliance, composed of several companies and organizations, including InterDigital Communications Corporation, NextHop Technologies, Nortel, Thomson, and others, will present a proposal focusing on the future 802.11n high throughput amendment, which it says will support existing WLAN installations while furthering the goal of extending their reach. Nortel will be pointing to its own wireless mesh deployment in Taipei to underscore the value of the Wi-Mesh Alliance's proposal.
Also presenting this week will be SEEMesh (Simple, Efficient and Extensible Mesh), which has the support of Intel, Texas Instruments, Motorola and Nokia. Intel has been behind the idea of so-called "Mesh Portals," which would allow mesh networks to connect to non-mesh networks.
Industry watchers expect a final 802.11s specification some time in late 2006 or early 2007, with ratification of the standard arriving the next year.