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Evaluation of non-terrestrial cell-on-wheel solution with satellite backhaul in wildfire operations






Mithun Shetty (Lead); Rex Hsieh

Other Collaborator(s):

Advisory Member(s):

Communications is critical part of wildfire operations. Traditionally, the majority of wildfire operations communications are established through VHF FM radios. Capability of data communications through radios are limited, and radio voice communication capabilities of radio networks can often be overwhelmed during expanded wildfire events.

FPInnovations Forest Operations is evaluating communication technologies that could bring connectivity in forest operations in a cost-effective manner. FPInnovations is planning to evaluate a communication solution in Cariboo forest operations during the summer of 2021. This solution is a non-terrestrial Star Solutions LTE cellular network that operates within public safety band 14, creating a private network and a satellite-based backhaul for establishing internet connection.

BC Wildfire Services is interested in this technology because of complex terrain and remoteness within its operational areas. BCWS and FPInnovations Wildfire Operations will use the opportunity to evaluate Star Solutions’ iCell private LTE solution with satellite backhaul in a wildfire operations environment.

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