Spangdahlem installs VoIP, reaps $10.7K in average annual savings

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Elizabeth Roman
  • 52nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs

52nd Communications Squadron bids farewell to the Meridian Stored Logic 100, a telephone switching system that has been a cornerstone of the base’s communications infrastructure since its installation in 2000. 

As 52nd CS worked to decommission the MSL-100, the use a more cost-effective system called Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) began ten years ago. The transition from the MSL-100 began in earnest in 2022, and 52nd CS successfully completed the switch on Feb. 21, 2024.

“The new technology utilizes the same fiber optic infrastructure your Non-Classified Internet Protocol Router (NIPR) computer uses,” said Capt. Henry MacGibbon, 52nd CS Operations officer. “Now, it’s the NIPR network switch in each building that provides electrical power to our new Cisco phones, which offers more configuration options and a better user experience and customization.”

Plain Old Telephone System (POTS). This analog telephone switch used electrical current distributed through thousands of miles of copper cables to power phones, fax machines, elevator emergency panels and other applications. It allowed Spangdahlem to make phone calls and connect in ways that were groundbreaking at the time of its installation 24 years ago.

POTS does not rely on an internet connection, unlike its modern alternative, VoIP. With internet access being more accessible than ever before, VoIP allows users to make calls using an internet connection rather than operating traditional landlines.

Prior to the MSL-100 shut down, the wing was being charged approximately $0.13 per kilowatt-hour and used anywhere from 8 to 11 kWh. Now, even without users, the system only consumes 8 kWh, demonstrating notable reductions in energy usage. With the successful transition, Spangdahlem will save an average of $10,750 per year using VoIP as the alternative.

Spangdahlem is the first base in United States Air Force in Europe – Air Forces Africa to shut down the MSL-100.