Video Blog - How to Assemble a Grid Antenna

March 30, 2017 at 8:00 AM

 

High-performance grid antennas are perfect for point-to-point, point-to-multi-point and wireless bridge applications. L-com’s 2.4 GHz grid antennas can be used in 802.11b/g/n WLANs and feature a rugged design for long-term outdoor operation. Our 5.8 GHz grid antennas are ideal for long-range, highly directional 5.8 GHz ISM and UNII-band operations.

 

If a grid antenna sounds like something you need in your application  but you’re not sure how assemble one, we’re here to help with that too.  In six simple steps, we’ll have you from parts on the floor to high-gain antenna in the sky.

 

The process is easy, but first you should follow some safety precautions to make sure that no one will fall while working from heights, and that nothing will come in contact with power lines. All towers and masts must be securely grounded and lightning arrestors should be used on all coax cable connections.

 

Next, make sure you have all of the parts needed:

 

  • ·       Antenna feedhorn assembly
  • ·       Stainless steel U-bolts with nuts and washers
  • ·       Mast clamps
  • ·       Aluminum “L” bracket
  • ·       Machine screws with nuts and washers
  • ·       Antenna reflector grid section halves


Now, watch our video. In less than 4 ½ minutes, we’ll have you connected and ready to go.

 

 

For more tips and how-to videos, click here.

 

 

Readers' Choice -Top Blog Posts of 2016

December 29, 2016 at 8:00 AM

 

As another year comes to a close, so does another chapter of our blog, Engineering Hub. We covered a wide variety of topics in order to keep you, our readers, in the loop with what’s going on in the world of wired and wireless technology. Here are highlights of the 2016 posts that were the most popular with our readers.

 


1.       802.11ay: 20 Gig Wireless!


The next generation wireless standard will blow you away with triple the speed and 30xs the transmission distance of 802.11ad. Learn about all of the benefits of 802.11ay and what it means for the world of wireless networking technology. (Read more)

 

 

 

2.       Fiber Showdown: Multimode vs. Single mode


Multimode and single mode are the two most common types of fiber optic cables. Both have very different attributes and one may work better than the other, depending on the needs of your application. This post will help you decide which will give you the best results. (Read more)

 

 

 

3.       Cat6 Cable: Shielded vs. Unshielded


Category 6 Ethernet cable is designed to provide high speed data rates, but how do you decide between shielded or unshielded? Here, we compare them side by side so you can choose which will work best for your application. (Read more)

 

 

 

4.       Good Vibrations: Vibration-Proof USB Connectors

 

Universal Serial Bus (USB) is one of the most widely used technologies to connect and power devices. One fundamental flaw of USB is its sensitivity to vibration, causing the connector to dislodge. In this post we show you some solutions to keeping your USB connected. (Read more)

 

 

 

5.      Next Generation Positioning: A look at what’s around the corner

 

GPS apps and positioning technology is something we use everyday to get directions or find something or someone nearby, and that usage is expected to continue to grow at a staggering rate. Here’s a look at what the IEEE has in store for next gen positioning technology. (Read more)

802.11ay: 20Gig Wireless!

March 31, 2016 at 8:00 AM

 

Hold on to your hats – or in this case, your wireless devices – and prepare to be blown away by 802.11ay. The next generation wireless standard promises almost three times the speed of 802.11ad with transmission rates of 20 Gbps, up from 802.11ad’s current rate of  7 Gbps. It will also extend transmission distance from the 10 meter limit of 802.11ad to as far as 300-500 meters!

 

Scheduled for release next year, 802.11ay will increase bandwidth and improve the reliability and robustness of the 60GHz millimeter wave spectrum. It will be designed to improve throughput, range and use-cases.

 

The focus of 802.11ay will be on new applications for mobile offloading, wireless docking and display as well as indoor and outdoor wireless backhaul. It is also expected to include mechanisms for MU-MIMO and channel bonding technologies.

 

The main targets for 802.11ay are DisplayPort, HDMI and USB connectivity, fast synch as well as short-range, high-bandwidth connectivity to TV and monitor displays.  

 

As an amendment for improving the performance of the 802.11ad standard, 802.11ay will support the same broad applications and be backward compatible with the 802.11ad standard.

 

802.11ay is primed to pack a punch with super-charged 20 Gig speeds and greater transmission distance. This revolutionary IEEE standard will surely break records and set the standard for future wireless technology.

 

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Next Generation Positioning: A look at what’s around the corner

March 10, 2016 at 8:00 AM

 

Most of us use GPS apps and positioning technology every day to get directions, find nearby restaurants and for a variety of other applications. Positioning technology has fully infiltrated our lives and usage is expected to continue to grow by up to 50% over the next two years.

 

Pinpointing the pulse of the market, the IEEE is working to develop the next generation positioning standard, 802.11az. 802.11az will enhance and enable indoor positioning systems by focusing on several key concepts. 

 

802.11az:

  • ·       Next-generation amendment to 802.11
  • ·       Designed for new positioning applications to run on wireless local area networks (WLAN)
  • ·       Focused on better positioning and location finding to enhance GPS for indoor locations
  • ·       Enables wireless connectivity for fixed, portable and moving stations within a local area
  • ·       Allows access to one or more frequency bands for local area communication

 

 Improved Accuracy:

  • ·       Increasing accuracy range from <1m to <0.1m
  • ·       As technology usage increases, so does the demand for performance
  • ·       Micro-locations offer a new category of usage models

  

Direction Finding:

· Guiding people through stores to find a specific product on a high  shelf

· Directing museum visitors through the exhibitions

· Providing product location information to customers as they enter a store

 

 

Improved Scalability and Efficiency:

  • ·       Bringing location technology into crowded venues to ease traffic flow
  • ·       Guiding people to their seats in stadiums
  • ·       Showing people to their gate in airports
  • ·       Directing passengers to their platform in metro stations and train stations

 

With such a great need for accurate indoor positioning, the IEEE is working to fulfill market demand by developing a robust, accurate and scalable wireless positioning standard. In the coming years, 802.11az will greatly enhance our personal and professional lives.

 

WiFi Alphabet Soup

December 17, 2015 at 8:00 AM

 

In 1997 the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) released the first 802.11 WiFi standard, 802.11-1997. Since then there have been several follow-on releases that have brought improvements in speed, range and capacity.

 

Here, we give you the A to Z on the 802.11 standards. 

 

Old School WiFi

 

Once widely implemented, especially in business networks, 802.11a supports data rates up to 54 Mbps. It utilizes the 5 GHz frequency band, which has significantly less congestion than other bands and less interference from other devices ensuring better signal integrity and fewer dropped connections. One disadvantage of 802.11a is that its effective overall range is slightly less than that of 802.11b and 802.11g. 802.11a signals are more readily absorbed by walls and other solid objects compared to 802.11b/g.

 

802.11b was released in 1999; the same year 802.11a was released. 802.11b access points, interface cards etc. were less expensive than 802.11a equipment which made it affordable for use in home and small business networks. 802.11b is better at penetrating solid objects such as walls compared to 802.11a but its maximum throughput is only 11 Mbps compared to 802.11a’s 54 Mbps. For outdoor networks 802.11b is not as effective as 802.11a at penetrating trees and leaves as it operates in the 2.4 GHz frequency band. 2.4 GHz signals are absorbed by water found in trees and leaves limiting overall outdoor range.

 

Adopted in 2003 with the promise of higher data rates and reduced cost, 802.11g also operates in the 2.4 GHz frequency band. 802.11g supports a maximum throughput of 54 Mbps and is backward compatible with 802.11b devices/networks. 802.11g experiences the same interference issues as 802.11b as it operates in the crowded 2.4 GHz range. Examples of devices that operate in the 2.4 GHz band include microwave ovens, baby monitors, Bluetooth devices and cordless telephones not to mention a multitude of other 802.11b/g access points.  

 

New School WiFi

 

802.11n, released in 2009, was developed to improve network throughput by utilizing multiple antennas to increase data rates. This standard uses both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands and provides high data throughput of up to 600 Mbps. Additionally 802.11n provides superior indoor and outdoor coverage, essentially doubling the range of its predecessors 802.11b/g.  

 

 

802.11n uses Multiple-input Multiple-output (MIMO) technology which is a technique for sending and receiving more than one wireless signal on the same radio channel at the same time which increases overall throughput (up to 600 Mbps!)

 

The most recently released version of the 802.11 standard is 802.11ac. 802.11ac supports data rates of up to 1.3 Gbps! 802.11ac operates solely in the 5 GHz band, supports MIMO technology and can handle up to four spatial streams (Wave 1) along with wide 80 MHz (Wave 1) channels. 802.11ac also has the advantage of multi-user MIMO or MU-MIMO which is an advanced form of MIMO where an access point can send data to up to four client radios at the same time directing a separate spatial stream to each one compared to 802.11n access points that can only communicate to one client at a time. By implementing MU-MIMO overall WiFi network efficiencies are realized even as more clients are added to the network.

 

Weighing the pros and cons of the different 802.11 standards and being well-versed in the 802.11 vocabulary will help you make an informed decision when planning your next WiFi network.

 

Click on the image below to download our handy 802.11 standards reference chart.

 

 

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