Hey there! It’s PSERN Mascot Sparky! Long time since you heard from me I know. But for a good reason! Myself along with some  PSERN staff members have been busy making things happen!

As with any project, testing equipment to make sure it is working properly is crucial! So last week myself and the PSERN gang were in Austin, Texas performing the Backhaul Factory Acceptance Test (BFAT).  This is a huge Project Milestone for us because it means that we are moving to the Implementation Phase from the Design Phase.  Design is where the engineers specify, design and order equipment.  Implementation is where we get to bolt equipment down, plug things in, and start the electronics up for the first time.

Why Austin? One of our vendors Aviat Networks has a big facility there that can accommodate all of the PSERN equipment. This is where we test all of the microwave and fiber optic equipment and their connections before the equipment is shipped to the PSERN warehouse.  There are over 80 MPLS Routers, 61 microwave links and 25 fiber optic links to be tested.  It’s all very exciting! (Must breathe, almost short circuited myself) .  The test plan is for this visit is 79 pages and will cover 1764 different requirements.  The testing team is made up of our partners from City of Seattle, Valley Communications, King County and PSERN staff.  These folks are to work with our vendors, Motorola Solutions, Aviat Networks, and Nokia for a successful demonstration of the new network.  And this won’t be the last time all of this equipment is tested.  Once it’s all installed, we will repeat the same test to verify that it works in the field.  And then there will be additional tests after that.  Why do we test so much?  Because PSERN needs to have its best day, when the community has its worst day.

Below are some pretty cool pics! You won’t see me in them because I got elected to be the photographer!

Until next time! – “Mascot Sparky”