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First eduroam connection in Greenland is on the air

By Nicolai Devantier , 15/05/20

First Published by DeiC at: https://www.deic.dk/da/news/2020-05-15/eduroam

Greenland has received its first eduroam connection and has thus joined the wireless network club comprising more than 100 countries.
Just over a year and a half ago, an email dropped into eduroam’s mailbox.

The sender was the Greenland Institute of Natural Resources, and the content addressed a query as to whether it was possible to get the wireless Internet service, eduroam, to Greenland.

“It came out of the blue a little bit, but it was a query that we were obviously happy with and were very interested in making it happen, not least because it was the first eduroam setup in Greenland,” says Morten Kjeldgaard, who is project manager for eduroam in DeiC.

The Greenland Institute of Natural Resources works with raw materials research, and has hired researchers from many parts of the world. It was thus a project that can also provide really good value for both Greenland, the researchers and eduroam.

Great distances and incomprehensible mail signatures

Of course, there are some geographical challenges associated with the very large distances and the rocky nature that hamper the mobile signals, but one of eduroam’s strengths is precisely that one can create a stable and controllable network.

The distance between DeiC’s office in Lyngby and the Greenland Institute of Natural Resources in NUUK is 3,532km. However, it has not caused any problems.

“When working over such great distances, most of the time, of course, takes place via mail and video, but the process itself was not so much different than it would be with a Danish setup. The only thing that stood out was the mail signatures, which were quite incomprehensible to a person with no knowledge of the Greenlandic language, ”he says with a smile on his lips.

However, the project was not completed overnight, but lasted for over half a year, which is mainly due to personnel replacements and other practical problems that can be encountered in all projects of this kind.

“After adjusting to the requirements with the local IT department, things fell into place, and Greenland has now been connected to the outside world via eduroam since May 1,” says Morten Kjeldgaard.

eduroam’s wireless networks exist in over 100 countries, and there are more than 13 million who sign in every month – in Denmark alone.