Microwave Radio Propagation

Technical Center Group NEC India


RF Microwave Fundamentals 2 .

Frequencies >15GHz are essentially used for short-haul transmission. 3 .Basic Microwave Radio System A communication system that utilizes the radio frequency band spanning 1. Small capacity systems generally employ the frequencies less than 3GHz while medium and large capacity systems utilize frequencies ranging from 3 to 15 GHz.5 to 50 GHz.

Basic Microwave Radio System Ways of communication in Telecom industry: 1) Cable 2) Microwave radio 3) Optical fiber 4) Satellite Advantages of Microwave : 1) Easy and quick installation 2) Medium is free Disadvantages of Microwave: Medium is exposed to many uncertainty 4 .

Wave Propagation in the atmosphere For No atmosphere With atmosphere Snell¶s law: Ray bends towards the denser medium of the two media 5 .

nearly no will reach the receiver 6 . Multipath can happen when dN/dh varies with height. Ground based duct: The atmosphere has a very dense layer at the ground with a thin layer on top of it. dN= Atmosphere dh= Height. There will be nearly total reflection from this layer boundary. multiple rays will reach the receiver. Multipath transmission is the main cause of fading. If one is inside and other is out side the duct. If both the Transmitter and the receiver are within the duct. Elevated duct: The atmosphere has a thick layer in some height above ground.Atmosphere Multipath Propagation Multipath propagation occurs when there are more than one ray reaching the receiver.

and the convection starts near ground. This in turn gives a region near ground where dM/dh<0. The ground based duct rises. giving temperature inversion. the ground is heated by sun again. A calm night will give radiation from the warm ground. Just after sunrise in morning. resulting in an elevated duct. dM/dh>0 This region is Cooled by ground dM/dh<0 Daytime Convection mixes The atmosphere Calm night No Convection temperature inversion Morning Ground based duct rises to become an elevated duct 7 . resulting in a ground based duct.Formation of a duct : During day time the sun heats the ground giving convection and a well mixed atmosphere.

33 for (5 to 15 Kms) and 0.74. The modification of terrain heights is given by (d1.d2)/(12.66 for longer path lengths (15-30 Kms) There must be a clearance for the first Freznel zone to avoid diffraction loss in addition to free space loss.Terrain Profiles 1) Line of sight 2) Fresnel Zone Line of sight between transmitter and receiver is a straight line and ray bending due to K-value variation is added to the terrain heights. 8 .k) K=1.

3 (d1.D) Where f is the freq in GHz D=d1+d2 the total path length in Km 9 . =wavelength D1 D2 F1 d1 d2 For practical application the radius F1 May be approximated by the formula: 1/2 F1= 17.antenna to Receiver Antenna d3-(d1+d2)= /2 Where d3=D1 + D2 refer to figure.d2/f.Fresnel Zone First fresnel zone is defined as the locus of Points having maximum energy lobe from Trans.

Difficult areas for Microwave link Over water paths High reflection coefficient. High ducting probability. Rice and wheat fields Strong ground reflection Desert area Multipath fading 10 . road access Availability of power (Exiting shelters and towers) Propagation condition Make interference measurements Finally prepare a report with required optimum tower heights.Survey: Field work: Confirmation of LOS (checking critical obstacles) Verification of position and altitudes of the sites Checking of site.

8 + 20 log (D.06 typically VSWR= Reflected power/ incident power 3) Cross polarization: A good cross-polarization enables full utilization of the frequency band by using Vertical and Horizontal polarization.Microwave Antenna The parabolic Antenna is the most commonly used antenna in Microwave Radio-relay systems.f) dBi Where D = Antenna diameter [m] & F = Frequency in GHz 2) VSWR Standard type Antenna : 1.04 to 1.15 typically High performance Antenna : 1.06 to 1. 11 . 4) Beam width: The half power beam width of an antenna is defined as the angular width of the main beam at ±3 dB point. Antenna parameters: 1)`Antenna gain : Gain is approximated by the formulae Gain = 17.

5 dB Free space loss = 130 dB Rx Antenna Gain = 36.0 dB Tx Antenna Gain = 36.5 dB Feeder loss Rx = 1.8 dB Rx 12 .Free Space Loss and Power Budget Power received at any point from a radiated antenna is inversely proportional to square of distance between them and radiating freq.2 dB Receiver Threshold = -80 dBm Fading margin = 39. It can be defined by formula: Lfs= 92.45 +20 log(f.2 dB Nominal input level = -40.d) Where Lfs= Free space loss Power budget: Tx Tx power o/p = +21 dBm Losses (feeder + branching) = 3.

For freq. Scattering Radio waves are a time varying electromagnetic field. The energy is attenuated due to radiation (scattering) and absorption(heating).5mm 2mm 2. Absorption When the wavelength becomes small (High freq. the incident field will induce a dipole moment in the raindrop. The rain drop will also have the same time Variation as the radio waves and will act as an antenna and reradiate the energy.5mm 13 . < 18GHz) relative to the raindrop size more energy is absorbed by heating of the raindrop.Precipitation Transmission of microwave signal above 10 GHz is vulnerable to precipitation. Why vertical polarization favorable at high freq.: As the rain-drop increases in size they depart spherical shape and get extended in the horizontal direction. So these rain-drops attenuate horizontally polarized waves than the vertical polarized. Raindrop shapes 1mm 1. higher than 18 GHz the wavelength is generally in mm. As rain drop-antenna have low directivity it will radiate energy arbitrary direction and add to loss.

the radio signal is affected by the free space conditions and characteristics along the propagation path. propagation across a mountainous path is generally more stable. Deeper fading may occur when the path height is low. Fading usually occurs during night time or early morning rather than daytime. 8. 1. Propagation conditions are more stable during winter than in other seasons. 7. signal level fluctuations are larger during clear and calm weather conditions than those during foul weather. Normal propagation conditions exist when there is no fading or when there is minimal signal fluctuation. In addition. However. deep fading occurs with high correlation to ducting. there are exceptions to this depending on the geographical location. 14 .Fading Since microwave communication uses free space as the propagation medium. Compared to areas located in plains and coastal areas. 6. 5. propagating at a steep elevation angle is more stable. 4. Generally. The probability and extent of fading increases with hop distance. When ducting exists along the propagation path. 3. 2.

Why Fading Margin : Nominal I/P level Rx I/P level -40dBm Atmospheric disturbance Receiver Threshold -80dBm outage Fading events are mainly caused by multipath fading and fading due to precipitation. Multipath Fading: Fading due to layering of the atmosphere is the dominating factor of degradation of radio-relays. larger (Gain) antennas.lower threshold level And reduced path length etc. 1) Flat fading= complete link length fading 2) Selective fading= selective lengths of link 15 . Transmitted waves that receives at the receiver refracted from the troposphere or reflected from the ground other than wanted signals are added to it. So larger the fading margin better the system performance. This can be achieved by higher tx o/p.The phase and amplitude relationship determines the resulting I/p signal at the receiver.

Lately angle diversity is also introduced.Overcoming the effects of multipath Diversity: The common forms of diversity in LOS links freq. And space or combination of both. Space Diversity: Placing two antennas vertically separated at the receiver tower so only one antenna Is located in a power minimum range. 16 .

Angle diversity: Two antenna feedhorns are slightly off the boresight. Bandwidth is costlier in India this technique is rarely being used. Combined Diversity: When using space diversity and frequency diversity at the same time. Diversity: This protection technique takes advantage of the freq. giving a duelbeam parabolic dish antenna. Diversity)/ Rx. But the as the freq. 17 .Freq. Hot Standby configuration: Reduces the system outage due to equipment failures. signals (from main antenna and space diversity antenna) carrying the same signal. Hybrid Diversity: 1+1 hot standby system having space diversity at one of the radio sites. Selectivity of the multipath Fading. it is possible to attain an improvement. Switching sections: By switching or combining the different channels (in freq.

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