Nectar Product Development

Clearmesh Idealab CM 300

Clearmesh Idealab CM 300

Background and Challenges

ClearMesh Networks, Inc., developed a fiber-grade wireless mesh broadband networking system for metropolitan areas as a more cost-effective alternative to laying hard fiber to carry high-quality voice, data, and video services. The company, with support from Idealab, a multibillion-dollar technology incubator, tasked Nectar with designing the optical nodes, upon which the system operates.


Outdoor Network Node Mounting Challenges

The ClearMesh CM 300 nodes provide citywide broadband coverage to support first responder, video surveillance, transportation, and business community applications. It is an essential component that establishes a citywide wireless network. Designing the node presented Nectar with several challenges, including configuring the optical head for outdoor mounting on roofs, poles, and walls; for accurate aiming to and from connected nodes in the mesh; and for residence to widely varying environmental conditions. In addition to overcoming these challenges, Nectar had to create a design that could be easily assembled and manufactured at low cost.

Simulating Difficult Environmental Conditions

To ensure that the ClearMesh CM 300 node would perform in extreme environmental conditions, Nectar leveraged industry-leading finite element analysis (FEA) and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulation tools to simulate the effects of potential temperature, wind, humidity, and seismic loads. Using these insights, Nectar developed a passive thermal regulation system to withstand extreme heat and cold, a weather-tight sealing system to protect against wind-propelled dust and water, and structural mounting features for secure installations onto rooftops and poles. The firm also labored to utilize low-cost materials and tooling to control assembly and manufacturing costs.