Noob question about wireless distances


#1

I’ve looked over the site and haven’t been able to find any information on the distance limitations on the wireless units. I’m familiar with spread-spectrum radios (use them with a Control Microsystems PLC SCADA system). How does Opto’s wireless compare? Two applications I am looking at are: (1) a water utility with two treatment plants, two remote tanks, & eleven remote wells. Distances are one to five miles, with line of sight and (2) a wastewater system with one plant and 30 lift stations scattered over a five square mile area. Lift stations would be monitor only.

My apologies if this is the wrong section for this or I have over looked something obvious on the site.


#2

Hi bheller,

Welcome to the OptoForums! I’m no expert but 1 to 5 miles sounds pretty far, especially since I’ve heard that rule-of-thumb our 802.11b/g devices have a similar range to something like an iPAD’s wifi (vs. cellular).

If we look at the spec for a SNAP-PAC-S2-W, for example, I see lots of numbers (including 802.11b/g), but what does that all mean? If I were to believe the [URL=“http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IEEE_802.11”]Wikipedia entry about 802.11b/g, their outdoor range is 460 feet. (That sounds far-ish too and of course will vary depending on many factors.)

I’ve also heard it’s possible to extend the range of our wireless devices by replacing the standard screw-on antennae with a bigger one. Still, I think the ranges you’re talking are outside normal “wifi” type ranges.

Perhaps a good place for a cellular modem? Here’s another post about those:
http://www.opto22.com/community/showthread.php?t=349

Hope that helps!
-OptoMary


#3

Thanks for the reply. We have talked with a couple of the pre-sales engineers and they explained that the Opto wireless units were wi-fi with a 200 foot range. One of them did give me a radio source that has been used by several integrators and the equipment looks really promising. Thanks to you and the sales guys for the help.

bheller


#4

For long range applications you can use Boosters, and a directional high gain antenna.
Choose low loss cables if you need a long run to the antenna. Conventional RG58 will not do the job in many cases. RG8 is a better choise for long cable runs.


#5

if you want send me a email with your contact info and i will give you a call thanks cory
i think i can save you some time and money cory@americanwidget.com


#6

bheller, the best you can do is create a network or just expand the actual… I have used engenius outdoors access points with good results over distances of 2-4 miles with the internal antenna, you can get 8-10 if using external yagi antenna…Most of their access points are 500 mw.(adjustable power)
Not shure about weather around your application, but consider that factor if using the access point outside and exposed to elements, I normally apply additional coat of silicone to ensure no water penetration, anyhow they have internal o’ring… They also have POE, the units can be used as a bridge or access point…I mostly use as a bridge and very satisfied with results…