Most microwave communication systems can be engineered to go thousands of miles, as in communicating with a satellite. Practically speaking, terrestrial microwave shots are limited to line of sight constraints. Usually this is limited by trees, terrain, buildings or the earth’s curvature. If you can visually see the other end, it usually is a valid application.
Up until recent history the answer is yes. A company called Orthogon Systems (now owned by Motorola) and a couple of others adopted Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM) technology. OFDM takes advantage of reflections that occur from buildings and other objects and essentially recombines these at the opposite end of the path. Performance is extremely good, up to 300Mbps.
The FCC regulates all radio transmission, whether licensed or non-licensed. With that said, there are frequencies set aside by the FCC for non-licensed situations. Basically, you can install a system without the time and expense involved in getting a license. The problem with non- licensed technology is that ANYONE can put up a system that might interfere with another system. There’s no such thing as “squatter’s rights”. If you have interference, and you can’t arbitrate or eliminate the problem, then you’re stuck. As a rule, SideBand Systems does not recommend PTP non-licensed technology in urban areas, particularly shots over one mile.
Unless they are really big birds, the answer is NO. Obviously, anything that blocks the transmission path for a substantial length of time will affect performance. Properly designed systems are virtually unaffected by rain, snow or fog. Design engineering includes an availability statistic which states a given percentage uptime. Our design goals are so-called “5 nines” or 99.999% availability due to rain or fog. This translates into a few minutes annually.
As stated above, microwave systems can be designed to provide “5 nines” availability. Other than the effects of atmospheric conditions, the only other variable is the equipment itself, which is no different than any other electronic device.
Bandwidths from as narrow as 10 Mbps to 1.4 Gbps are supported from a variety of manufacturers. Formats in IP or “t” Carrier are available
Depends. If the customer owns the land, not through a public or private way or built up, and not too far, we recommend fiber. This is usually not the case, and the customer has to contend with permits, police details, variances, town meetings etc.
The FCC requires licenses for licensed microwave. This is a multiple part process that involves frequency coordination and license submission to the FCC, usually taking several weeks. It is transparent to the customer as SideBand Systems takes full responsibility for completion. Permits are usually required for antenna installation, from the municipality in question. If towers are involved, the process can be lengthy and expensive.
SideBand Systems designs systems from the ground up, and antenna sizes, types are a function of distance, application and frequency. Usually, the longer the distance required, the larger the antenna size.
Manufactures include Aviat, Ceragon, Cisco, Bridgewave, NEC, Dragonwave, Firetide, Motorola and a dozen or so others.
SideBand Systems maintains and repairs systems on a 7 X 24 hour basis. We carry a complete inventory of spares and test equipment, so a customer will have one of our Field Technicians on site, with spares, in under (2) hours. We also provide remote monitoring included in our standard maintenance agreements for all system components. In some cases, we are able to predict product failure through trending and analysis, and repair the system without the customer ever making a call.
SideBand Systems has worked in the microwave communications industry since 1992. Our Field Technicians have CCNA, CCDA certifications as well as FCC First Class Radio Telephone Operator’s License. We also comply with all OSHA required training and are vendor trained for the systems we install. The company has supplied systems to over 800 accounts, and currently maintains such notable accounts as Partners HealthCare, Harvard University, the Rhode Island State Police, MassPort, and many other mission critical accounts in the New England area.
We can support any system in the (6) state New England area. Most accounts are supportable with on-line monitoring and/or on-site Field Technicians in under (2) hours.
The first is the requirement to transport large amounts of bandwidth from one customer location to another. Usually, the customer is paying a substantial amount of money to the telephone company for leased lines. Microwave can replace these lines at a substantial savings, and eliminate recurring charges (except for optional maintenance agreements). Another complaint is poor performance, either service or statistics. It’s very tough for a competitor to compete with SideBand’s Systems ability to provide on site service, with spares, monitored services.
Absolutely. The degree of latency is very low, since microwaves travel near light speed. Consider a microwave path as just another piece of plumbing, except that instead of water, you’re delivering bits of information.
It’s very rare that interference occurs in licensed systems. These frequency specific licenses are an FCC ” Sacred Cow”. The fines for spurious or intentional interference are substantial.
It depends on what you’re sending, whether IP or T Carrier, and the system that you use. When it comes to IP, if the information is encrypted before it is transmitted, then depending on the type of transmission, it can be very secure. In some cases, manufactures equipment can sense when a potential hacker attempt is made, and will shut both ends down. In other cases, specific matches between transmitting and receiving are part of a design, so unless there is an exact match, hacking of data becomes impossible.
Microwave transmission at these frequencies is called “non ionizing”, and is not harmful to human tissue at these power levels. In some cases (2.4GHz) microwave system operate at the same frequencies as microwave ovens. Ovens depend on the microwaves making the water molecule resonate, creating heat. At these power levels (500-750 Watts output power) microwaves cause damage from the creation of heat. With wireless/microwave transmission devices, the power output is generally described in fractions of a watt. Also, microwave power dissipates substantially as the distance from the source, so virtually no impact on health occurs.
Systems include an antenna, usually parabolic, but sometime flat, coaxial cable from the antenna to an indoor unit, and then some connection to CPE, sometimes fiber or 100BaseT.
Antennas are either mounted directly to building structures, or with the application of a “gravity” mount, which does not get attached to the building.