Fiber Optic Installation Completed in Nebraska

Great Plains Communications has completed a seven-mile fiber optic cable build to Ashfall Fossil Beds State Historical Park near Orchard, Nebraska. The 360-acre park is home to numerous skeletons of prehistoric animals – including rhinos, camels, three-toed horses and birds – preserved in the area where volcanic ash killed them 12 million years ago.

Because of the park’s remote location, access to adequate communications services to support their mission of virtual education was not a possibility. The park relied on Satellite Internet services and struggled with poor telephone audio quality. To solve these issues, Ashfall, which is part of the University of Nebraska State Museum and the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, worked with Great Plains Communications to install fiber optic cable to the facility. Funding for the project which was completed in late August was provided by a grant from the Nebraska Environmental Trust.

The newly installed fiber services provided by Great Plains Communications will allow the park to educate students all over the world through virtual field trips. In addition to high-speed Internet benefits, the facility will experience a clear, more reliable connection via fiber-based phone service.

“We are honored to bring the dedicated Ashfall paleontologists and staff these improved technology resources to share their fossil discoveries with students both on a national and international level,”  Todd Foje, CEO of Great Plains Communications, said. “We look forward to hearing more about this Nebraska treasure as they implement their virtual field trip program.”

Ashall Fossil Beds State Historical Park is open seven months a year and hosts about 20,000 annual visitors. It is a National Nebraska Landmark.

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