Department of Homeland Security – Wireless Accelerated Responder Network (WARN)

Enterprise Application Development

The Wireless Accelerated Responder Network (WARN) was the nation’s first city-wide broadband wireless public safety network. This pilot network was unveiled in September 2004 and was first operationally used in January 2005 for the Presidential Inauguration and then for the State of the Union. WARN consists of 12 radio sites and 200 network devices (i.e. PC cards) that facilitate wireless interconnection of Local and Federal public safety mobile devices throughout the District of Columbia. In addition, users of the network can access applications that previously were only accessible from the desktop computers.

u000bWARN was a pilot network run on an experimental license in the 700 MHz band provided by the FCC. The District anticipated that use of this network, in concert with the activities of the Spectrum Coalition for Public Safety, would help persuade Congress to allocate the funding necessary for the deployment of broadband public safety networks by state, county and local governments. In the interim, we solicited feedback from our first responder WARN users to demonstrate the network’s capabilities to the public safety community.

Network Attributes

  • Covers over 95% of the District
  • Uplink rate  — 900 kbps (peak)/300 kbps (average)
  • Downlink rate — 3 Mbps (peak)/900 kbps (average)
  • Low latency (30-50ms)

Full mobility (communications sustained while device mobile throughout the city)

Scalability (Frequency reuse of 1 allows for “plug-and-play” site for capacity increase)

Dedicated Public Safety network – no contention with cellular or commercial users.

All IP network; features include full quality of service (QOS) capabilities, and static IP addresses

Rapidiant helped support the WARN initiative by supplying Technical Support Engineers who prepared hardware for the WARN infrastructure to be deployed. The Engineers were also responsible for installation and management of application software and support for RF testing including pre-testing of demonstration venues and support of drive testing on the network as required. Our Engineers use a Remedy trouble ticket system to respond to and fulfill requests for service as they arise.