Line of Sight Requirements for Reliable Low-Power RF Communication
Nov, 18 2014
Line-of-sight is defined as the straight line distance, clear of any objects, between the gateway antenna and each monitor it communicates with. Poor communications between a gateway and any monitor can cause two adverse effects: missed reports and a shortened battery life. If a monitor has trouble communicating with a gateway it may have to re-establish a connection while reporting a level. This process prolongs radio on time and further drains the battery. If a connection cannot be established, the tank level reading will be skipped.
TSM8000 monitors and their X2e, X2, and X4 gateways operate at 2.4 GHz frequency band and contain 18 dB (63 mw) radios. In addition, the X2 and X4 models have an additional 2 dB of gain from their antennas to provide 100 mW of output power. This allows for a 1,000-ft range with true line-of-sight conditions. However, few installations have perfect line-of-sight and some installation guidelines need to be observed. The following information will aid in antenna installation and positioning.