The WiMAX Forum has established a North American testing base — The MAXWell Lab — at the University of Maryland so companies, especially in the U.S. but others throughout the world, will be able to develop and test new WiMAX applications.

The university’s Institute for Advanced Computer Studies will partner with the MAXWell Lab to initially focus on “location-aware applications,” especially as Sprint Nextel is rolling out WiMAX-based applications in nearby Washington, D.C.

“With a community of some 45,000 people at the University of Maryland, this is going to be a unique facility because of the size of the potential test bed and the large number of live users,” said Ashok Agrawala, director of the MAXWell Lab and professor of computer science in a Forum news release. “Our students, in collaboration with professors, industry leaders and WiMAX Forum members, will use the new lab to develop breakthrough applications and services, most of which we cannot yet imagine.”

In addition to the MAXWell Lab, the Forum endorsed the M- Taiwan Application Lab in Hsinchu, Taiwan in October 2007.