RF Survey

Site survey is a physical survey of the customer's premises or proposed 'Hot-Zone' to identify the best possible locations to install backhaul equipment and access points to ensure 100% wireless coverage, along with maximum performance, within the desired area.

When considering the use of wireless equipment, it is extremely difficult to predict the propagation of radio waves and detect the presence of interfering signals without the use of specialized test equipment. Even if you are using omni-directional antennas, radio waves do not travel the same distance in all directions. Walls, doors, elevator shafts, people, and other obstacles offer varying degrees of attenuation, which cause the radio frequency (RF) radiation pattern to be irregular and unpredictable.

As a result, one should have an RF site survey performed to understand fully the behavior of radio waves within a facility or outdoor site before installing any wireless devices. The goal of an RF site survey is to gather enough information and data to determine the number and placement of access points that will provide the coverage required. Coverage required usually means the support of a minimum data rate in a given area. An RF site Survey will also detect the presence of radio interference coming from other sources that could degrade the performance of the wireless system.

The need and complexity of an RF site survey will vary depending on the size of the facility or site and the work that is to be accomplished.

A site survey is a good idea for the use of any wireless device because without a survey, users could end up with inadequate coverage and suffer from low performance in some areas. The purchase of wireless equipment is no small expenditure, so it is best not to leave any portion of the project up to chance.

To ensure the accuracy of the final site survey report that Bailment delivers, only the latest and most sophisticated equipment is used to check for Signal Level, Noise Level, and more importantly SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio). After the site survey, we will design the network infrastructure to fit your specific needs. Using the information obtained during the site survey, Bailment will design a wireless network infrastructure for your specific environment that will ensure complete propagation to each of your devices.

With wireless systems, it's very difficult to predict the propagation of radio waves and detect the presence of interfering signals without the use of test equipment. Even if you're using omnidirectional antennas, radio waves don't really travel the same distance in all directions. Instead walls, doors, elevator shafts, people, and other obstacles offer varying degrees of attenuation, which cause the Radio Frequency (RF) radiation pattern to be irregular and unpredictable. As a result, it's often necessary to perform a RF site survey to fully understand the behavior of radio waves within a facility before installing wireless network access points.

The ultimate goal of a RF site survey is to supply enough information to determine the number and placement of access points that provides adequate coverage throughout the area. In most implementations, "adequate coverage" means support of a minimum data rate. A RF site survey also detects the presence of interference coming from other sources that could degrade the performance of the wireless system.

When conducting an RF site survey, we consider these general steps:
  1.    # Visual inspection of the area. Walking through the area do reveal facts about the site plan. This is a good time to note any potential barriers that may affect the propagation of RF signals. For example, a visual inspection will uncover obstacles to RF such as metal tanks towers, mountains. . . .

  2.    # Identification of the user areas its good habit to mark the areas of fixed and mobile users on the diagram as well as illustrating where mobile users may roam. Determine preliminary access point locations. By considering the Location of wireless users and range estimations of the wireless system used, approximation of the locations of spots that will provide adequate coverage throughout the user areas will be possible. Planning for some propagation overlap among adjacent access points may seem necessary when number of subscribers grow. Mounting locations should be considered, which could be ground or rooftop towers. Recognizing suitable locations for installing the tower, antenna, cables, and power line is a vital task in any access point location phase.

  3.    # Data gathering Once the surveyor is satisfied that the planned location of access points will provide adequate coverage, data regarding site installation peripherals, covered spots and barriers should be gathered. Panoramic photos of site boundaries with steps of 45 degrees as well as photos in the direction of antenna azimuth predictions should be taken to provide an asset for the site planner. Such photos must be orderly placed in the site documentation. Data regarding existing and/or reusable site installations should also be included in the document. Any reusable container, room for indoor equipment or existing tower must be listed. The survey document should also contain information about the area, environment, site address, ways to access the site place and available access time to reach the place