Recently, the Ente Nacional de Comunicaciones (ENACOM) of Argentina granted the certification to the LibreRouter.
This procedure, which took a lot of dedication and joint effort among several actors, is an important achievement. The homologation certifies that the technology built for community networks is at the level of the current regulations, that its features are measured and certified, granting a guarantee of quality and that, in addition, it is possible to be commercialized in Argentina.
Why to certify?
In most of the countries of the world it is necessary to carry out a certification of the equipments that make use of the radioelectric spectrum. The certification verifies that the equipment complies with the corresponding technical standards.
In Argentina, the Ente Nacional de Comunicaciones (ENACOM) is the body in charge of the standardization of communications equipment. This standardization is carried out through the dictation of technical standards based on user safety, efficient use of the radio spectrum and compatibility with authorized communications networks and systems.
An achievement of teamwork
Obtaining the certification was a process that implied a sustained work during several months. To achieve this, LibreRouter and AlterMundi worked as a team, together with the valuable participation of the National Institute of Industrial Technology (INTI) and ITon Consulting.
As this is the first time that we have manufactured our own technology, and there are not many other similar experiences, the contributions, services and accompaniment provided were key to successfully completing the certification.
On the other hand, it is worth mentioning that INTI is a decentralized organism of the Ministry of Production and Labor of Argentina that supports the development of the industry throughout the country through the transfer of technology, the strengthening of measurement capacities and the impulse to innovation in all productive areas. At the same time, with more than 60 years of trajectory, it is the national institute of reference in the field of innovation with an important role and prestige in terms of services, quality and metrology for the industry in order to face the competitive technological challenges at an international level.
The relationship with INTI began years ago when they also explored, participated in and accompanied some experiences in community networks. They could not be sustained over time, among other reasons, due to the lack of appropriate technology to deploy networks that are decentralized and managed by the people. That is why now, with LibreRouter in hand and working, they put all their measurement work to achieve the certification of our router created specifically for communities that organize themselves to connect and build their bits of the Internet.
Along with the contribution and excellent work of Miguel Mourad of ITon were the participations that made possible to get the homologation. We emphasize that the organized work and teamwork among actors interested in the subject was a decisive factor to achieve it.
A certification that opens doors and proposes challenges
For those of us who work on the LibreRouter Project and AlterMundi, having managed to certificate our technology is both motivating and valuable. On the one hand, because the measurements show that it works and very well and that the technology and open source hardware developed through collaborative work by organizations that are not companies, can live up to the highest international standards.
We understand that this first certification in Argentina shows the need to carry it out in other countries of the Global South where LibreRouter will be used. We understand these processes as part of the necessary actions to continue on the path to build technological sovereignty and generate favorable conditions for communities to really operate and manage their own Internet networks in rural and disconnected places where the digital divide currently excludes about 4 billion people in the world.